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Death in Cyprus

(Death in... Series #3)

3.91  ·  Rating details ·  1,212 ratings  ·  99 reviews
Twenty-year-old Amanda Derrington is on an extended cruise with her uncle when she decides to make a short side trip to the sun-washed island of Cyprus. But even before the ship arrives in port, there is a suspicious death. Once the passengers reach the island, it soon becomes clear that the death was in fact an act of murder. What Amanda had meant to be a pleasant excursi ...more
Hardcover, 214 pages
Published May 1st 1984 by St. Martin's Press (first published 1956)
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Average rating 3.91  · 
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 ·  1,212 ratings  ·  99 reviews


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Bobby Underwood
Nov 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
M.M. Kaye wrote this most enjoyable mystery novel set in an enchanting Cyprus that Kaye realized was too good to last. Years later when memories of places like Kyrenia had begun to fade, she made the sun shine one last time on the Cyprus she had seen and experienced in this marvelous mystery-romance. Those who love the scope and beauty of Kaye's grander, heftier works will find much to love in this old-fashioned mystery and romance set in an exotic locale. M. M. Kaye made sure the sun would neve ...more
Jaline
May 12, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: xx2018-completed
M. M. Kaye’s descriptive writing always makes me feel like I have been there myself – and that I want to return!

Despite the fact that there are murders happening, and that somehow Amanda has gotten caught up in them, the enigmatic Steve Howard seems to always be on hand to muddy the waters and prevent Amanda from being hauled off to prison.

The group of characters around which this novel revolves is fairly large. At the same time, the characters are well drawn and uniquely
...more
Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽
M.M. Kaye wrote six romantic suspense/murder mysteries back in the mid-20th century, all titled (or in some cases retitled) "Death in ___" and set in different exotic locations around the world. I binged on them all like so many potato chips. This time we're in beautiful scenic Cyprus, an island off the coast of Turkey and Syria with a large Greek population.

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  <span id=M.M. Kaye wrote six romantic suspense/murder mysteries back in the mid-20th century, all titled (or in some cases retitled) "Death in ___" and set in different exotic locations around the world. I binged on them all like so many potato chips. This time we're in beautiful scenic Cyprus, an island off the coast of Turkey and Syria with a large Greek population.

description

It's the 1950s, and 21 year old Amanda Derington is traveling on a ship to Cyprus for a vacation. She kindly exchanges cabins with the loud, whiny, miserable Mrs. Julia Blaine, who has a terror of the number 13 assigned to the cabin. Amanda nearly drinks a nice cold drink left in the cabin before realizing it had to have been left for Julia. Julia then comes to Amanda's cabin (to complain about her neglectful husband), drinks the drink and promptly falls dead. I guess the number 13 really was unlucky for her ...

It looks like suicide to everyone, except that Amanda and the mysterious and cynical Steven Howard, who appears in the night to help Amanda out, have some extra clues that make them realize it wasn't. But even after they disembark on Cyprus, the unknown murderer is following Amanda, presumably to tie up the loose end that she represents, in ways that involve hair-raising incidents(view spoiler).

description
Historic Hilarion castle, where ... never mind!

I guessed the murderer in the other two Kaye mystery novels I read before this one, but Death in Cyprus fooled me completely. The clues were there; I just didn't put them all together.

This was an enjoyable, light and quick read, though nothing deep or profound. There's just a dash of romance, but it's nothing to write home about: it's the old-fashioned standard virginal ingenue and the steely-eyed alpha male who takes charge. Given the 1950s publication date I didn't mind it too much, though some readers might. I did want Amanda to be a little less helpless and a little more clued in, but I liked the main characters, in spite of their shortcomings.

A fun murder mystery, in a distinctly old-fashioned kind of way. It gives you a nice historic glimpse into Cyprus as it was in the 1950s.
...more
mark monday
Mar 11, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: murdertime
This was pure pleasure from beginning to almost the end. M.M. Kaye drew on her own stay in Cyprus - including using the house she stayed in as the novel's central location - to paint a portrait of a certain place during a certain time, and the actual experience with the locale and the home made this a memorably immersive experience. But immersive in the lightest of ways! Death in Cyprus is a light, fizzy delight, full of fun dialogue and enjoyable characters (predominately the women, many of the ...more
Wanda
***2017 Summer Lovin’ Reading List***

I love these older murder mystery/romance mash-ups written by writers like M.M. Kaye and Mary Stewart. Dating from the 1950s, they were written in an era where book heroines were more innocent (and worried about their reputations) and the social classes were more firmly entrenched.

I owned all the Kaye’s Death in … series at one point in my life and read them all multiple times. I wasn’t more than three pages into this one when I realized that I already
...more
Hannah
Rating Clarification: 3.5 stars

M.M. Kaye's 6 book "Death in..." murder mystery series takes the reader to the island of Cyrus, circa late 1940's/early 1950's. Sheltered orphan Amanda Derington is eager to see the world, so when her straightlaced Uncle Oswin asks her to visit one of his far-flung business concerns, Amanda jumps at the chance. But she can't even set foot on the fabled island before death comes calling and reaps one of the passangers on board the S.S. Orantares, the ship Amanda booked passage
...more
Dorcas
Oct 15, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, mmkaye, europe
Another great murder whodunnit by M.M.Kaye! I find it close to impossible to guess the bad guys in her books, they're never predictable and always keep you guessing. In fact I have to force myself not to peek at the last chapter.

This book is set in Cyprus and it made a nice follow up after finishing the Moonspinners by Mary Stewart. The descriptions of Cyprus are real but not the focus of the book. Its a mystery and the author doesn't let us forget it or allow us to get sidetracked.<
...more
Andrea
One of the weakest heroines of this series (exacerbated rather by the breathy young girl voice used by the audiobook narrator). Spends a lot of time being scared, and doesn't have a clue what's going on.

By contrast, there was a wonderful cynical romance novelist character called Persis, who I would have loved watching find a happy ending.
Alisha
May 17, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This author does suspense REALLY well.
I enjoyed this story from start to finish.
I've read two M.M. Kaye books now, and it amuses me to see that her lead male characters are very alpha male, always telling the girl what's good for her, bossy, with a tenderness for the heroine barely concealed by a businesslike exterior, always doing the rescuing, etc. You get the idea. I personally don't mind it (I guess I'm a sucker for that soft heart under a gruff surface thing, and hey, if I were afrai
...more
Suzannah
Full review to follow!
Judith
Sep 24, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
M.M. Kaye is best known for her wonderful book "The Far Pavilions, but I urge readers to give her Death in... mystery series a try. Kaye's gift is in the rich details of the exotic locations she writes about. In her forwards she tells the readers when she lived or visited there. Her Death in... mysteries are usually set when the British were still a strong presence in some of these places,

Twenty-one-year-old Amanda Derington has decided that she has been under the thumb of her strict, opp
...more
Ioana
Mar 18, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Wavering between 1 and 2 stars... Kaye writes so well, and the mood and settings she describes leave me breathless, and while the mystery-plot itself is decent, unfortunately her work suffers from extreme misogynistic tendencies that pretty much disintegrate all magic she weaves in other ways.

I really just wanted to walk up to the heroine (or to Kaye?), take a hold of her and shake her vigorously while admonishing her to get a hold of herself. I mean, the characterization was ridiculous: beauti
...more
Lisa Brantly
Sep 23, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
2.5 stars... Rounded down. Doesn't handle dialogue as well as Mary Stewart & do not feel I have visited Cypress.
Jannah (Cloud Child)
25/04/18
As suspenseful and entertaining as before, though i hadn't forgotten the real culprit.

28/01/17
On the last few of rainy days I spent with the hubby in Barcelona, this was a good comfort addiction while the rain pouuuured outside and he was ill and I was tired and bored. Trust me to go in the wrong season. At least I got a decent read out of it. I think I even had a dream about it.
I'm starting to get the template for M. M. Kayes books now the beginning eith the girl unaccount
...more
Sophie
Dec 21, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016, open_library
Entertaining story. It was a little obvious who the bad guy was (view spoiler) but his motivation was well hidden (withheld?). I liked the characters, though, and the setting. M. M. Kaye used to be a favorite author of mine, and it's fun to revisit the mysteries she wrote as she and her husband traveled the world.
Connie D
Sep 30, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a fun series, a sort of YA series before such a thing existed. I enjoy the historical travel, romance, mystery, etc., but now that I'm much older it's not quite as appealing to experience all that through the eyes of someone so young and pretty.
Bev
Oct 01, 2011 rated it really liked it
In Death in Cyprus (1956) by M. M. Kaye, Amanda Deringting has been under the thumb of her rather Calvinistic and Victorian-minded uncle ever since her parents died when she was young. He believes in the pure life and that he (a bachelor) knew better how to raise a girl than her aunts. But when he takes Amanda on a trip so he can visit outlying posts of the Derington empire (branch offices in all sorts of outlandish places), she turns twenty-one and decides to kick over the traces and go her own ...more
Avid Series Reader
Death in Cyprus by M.M. Kaye is the third book of the Death in... mystery series, set in post-WWII Cyprus (when the author lived there; the house in which the author lived is featured in the story).

Amanda is a young Englishwoman on an extended trip with her uncle to oversee his foreign business offices. She decides to take a holiday by herself on Cyprus. On the boat to Cyprus, Amanda travels with a group of people all headed to Cyprus for a change of scene. She swaps rooms with a fellow travele
...more
Jenny
Dec 28, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Inspired by a line from a poem, Amanda Derington decides to visit Cyprus. But when a fellow passenger dies in her cabin on the voyage there, her pleasant journey turns into a nightmare. It soon becomes clear that it was no accident, but rather, murder. And Amanda can't help but be swept up in the middle of it.

A delightful read. An Agatha Christie-like plot with great characterization and a splendid setting. Definitely recommended.
corpho
Oct 18, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
There were some funny lines, and a variety of characters, but I was so tired of Amanda's frightened stuttering. "I--I don't know. Wh--why?" There was far too much of that. And the preposterous episodes where her hair kept saving her from being killed -- oh, brother! I enjoyed the descriptions of Cyprus, though. It's a light, fun read, but the plot is a bit ridiculous.
Lee Roberts
May 27, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A fun romp - which is a bizarre thing to say about a whodunnit, but this series are very light hearted whodunnits with a dash of very british stiff upper lip romance thrown in. Excellent way to spend a lazy Saturday.
Doris
Sep 03, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: british-lit, mystery
Probably 2.5 stars. I had fun reading it, but it's a bit outdated and predictable. Still, fun travel literature.
Michael
While not without flaws, this was a perfectly acceptable bit of escapism. It's not destined to be a personal favorite, though.

M.M. Kaye seems to have done the same kind of writing as Mary Stewart, but not quite as well. For instance, in this book there are a few pleasant descriptions, but in general, the exotic locale isn't as finely painted as in Mary Stewart's best work. I don't come away from the book feeling as though I'd visited Cyprus. The main thing I remember is that Kaye fal
...more
Homerun2
3.5 stars

M.M. Kaye's books were a recent discovery. I quite enjoy this genre once in a while, the romance and mystery mix. They are clearly dated, which is often part of their charm but which can be a barrier at times. This one is set in Cyprus where young Amanda is visiting as a tourist. Before she even reaches land, one murder has occurred.

All books feature a winsome young female lead who is intelligent, perceptive, usually level-headed and fairly brave. The down side to books wri
...more
Naomi
Jun 18, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Like all of MM Kaye's "Death in..." series, I liked the storyline of this book. I just didn't like Amanda as a character. She is very short tempered, especially with Steve. All those times he tried to help her and she just got crabby with him. She gladly sought his help when she needed it, and when she didn't, she was rude, snobbish, slapping him etc. I just didn't understand at all what he saw in her.
Buffy
Oct 19, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Good enough diversion whilst sanding down what felt like 843 pieces of oak cabinetry. I enjoy old-fashioned mysteries, and this one fit the bill. Heroine was a little too helpless for my taste, but again, it’s a 1950’s mystery. I adore M.M. Kaye, and while this doesn’t even remotely approach her historicals, she still expertly sets a scene and creates wonderful characters.
Liz
Classic cosy mystery. I read all of this series many times as a teenager, so they hold a sense of sentimentality for me over and above the nostalgic sense of setting. Although I loved it back then, the dated attitudes to gender are more irritating on this reread.
Jai
Jun 02, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Oh man, so much fun. A bit old fashioned, like stepping into a dusty sunlit story with shades of Agatha Christie, but with a wonderful sense of place. I want to read all Kaye's "Death in" books now (there are only 6, which feels like a shame)!
Robyn
Aug 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great mystery writer
Christine
Aug 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A mystery full of suspense and set in a unique and vivid place
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M. M. Kaye (Mary Margaret) was born in India and spent her early childhood and much of her early-married life there. Her family ties with the country are strong: her grandfather, father, brother and husband all served the British Raj. After India's independence, her husband, Major-General Goff Hamilton of Queen Victoria's Own Corps of Guides (the famous Indian Army regiment featured in The Far Pav ...more

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