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Tom Brown's Body (Mrs. Bradley #22)

3.47  ·  Rating details ·  116 Ratings  ·  15 Reviews
Murder at an English public school requires the attention of Mrs. Beatrice Lestrange Bradley. First published in 1949.
Paperback, 192 pages
Published May 1st 2008 by Rue Morgue Press (first published 1949)
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Gillian Kevern
I always have mixed feelings about Gladys Mitchell's mysteries. On the one hand, I love her wit, her irreverence, and the way she toys with the boundaries of detective fiction. On the other hand, I am old-fashioned with regards to those same boundaries, and I want to feel that I could have solved the mystery myself. I don't think Tom Brown's Body was entirely successful in this respect, but it was a good story, and there were touches of her usual amusing self.

Recommended for fans of the classic
Oct 22, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: i-own-it, whodunnit
This murder mystery was enjoyable to read for several reasons but reasons that I do not feel much relate to the prime quality one presumably expects from a "whoddunit", namely interest in finding out/guessing/deducing who the murderer is before the end of the book. I feel that this story suffers from what most murder mysteries suffer from, namely a feeling of indifference to the identity of the murderer compared to the fascination in the pursuit and discovery of the guilty party. I think this is ...more
May 31, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio, 100-in-2012
Gladys Mitchell was one of the British Crime Queens working in the first half of the 20th century. She was about as prolific as Christie or Marsh, but hasn't remained quite as popular. I found her becasuse of a small series of videos that were made featuring her primary detective, Mrs. Bradley. Mrs. Bradley is a psychologist and widow who has lived a dreadfully interesting life. She has a wide circle of friends and oftentimes they draw her into murder investigations. The mini series was produced ...more
Jul 28, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A murder mystery set in a boys' school, Gladys Mitchell weaves an enthralling story around vivid and lifelike characters. An unpopular teacher dies and suspicion points to different people one after the other. A second murder attempt takes place midway through the book and then things become clearer and the book winds to its conclusion. This is the first Mrs Bradley mystery I have read, and I am now eager to watch the show as well.

What I liked:

The characters were wonderful. Every person had a
Aug 09, 2011 rated it really liked it
I had never read a Gladys Michell book before. This was an autographed copy. I like the idea she had actually touched this book back in 1949. The style is very different. She starts a new paragraph with something that seems to have happened recently that doesn't synch with what she has written earlier, she then goes back to tell about the past occurence. I would rate this between a three and a four and will try another by Mitchell.
Steven Heywood
Jul 13, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It took me a while to get into this book — the schoolboys who feature largely at the beginning are well-crafted clichés — but I'm glad I did. With her fondness for playing the game by the rules while turning it on its head Gladys Mitchell's always an engaging and interesting writer. In this case, although the murder mystery dominates nearly every page of the book the murder and its solution are incidental to the occasional glances at the nature of Mrs. Bradley. Only the murder is fathomable.
Another outing for Mrs Bradley & her entourage - a slightly more straightforward plot this time but some of the comments & descriptions hark back to a less politically correct era so not a book for the sensitive.
Feb 06, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
but not good enough to finish reading.....the school boy banter was almost incomprehensible (but I have the same problem on the school bus).
Nice references to witches as bring quite 'normal' but overall tedious.
Mind you I don't like Agatha either (shock horror)
Sep 21, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not as muddled as many of her other novels, I actually got some idea of how the murder was done in this one, and it has the virtue of excellent characterisations of small boys and elderly schoolmasters. I do wish Mitchell had bothered to reread and tie up her loose ends, though.
Mar 29, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, fiction
Definitely one of the Gladys Mitchell novels I have enjoyed most, but that's not actually saying that much. It's funny, I definitely want to read all her books, but she's not what I'd call a favourite.
The mystery aspect of the book is good enough but I just can't warm to the character of Mrs Bradley, and that spoils the books for me.
Audiobook. Bit complicated. Deals with school boys realistically.
Verity W
Pfft. I'm still not sure about this series. The book was ok - I wasn't sure about the mystical element and the solution came out of no-where practically.
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Aka Malcolm Torrie, Stephen Hockaby.

Born in Cowley, Oxford, in 1901, Gladys Maude Winifred Mitchell was the daughter of market gardener James Mitchell, and his wife, Annie.

She was educated at Rothschild School, Brentford and Green School, Isleworth, before attending Goldsmiths College and University College, London from 1919-1921.

She taught English, history and games at St Paul's School, Brentfo
More about Gladys Mitchell...

Other Books in the Series

Mrs. Bradley (1 - 10 of 66 books)
  • A Speedy Death (Mrs. Bradley, #1)
  • The Mystery of a Butcher's Shop (Mrs. Bradley, #2)
  • The Longer Bodies (Mrs. Bradley, #3)
  • The Saltmarsh Murders (Mrs. Bradley, #4)
  • Death at the Opera (Mrs. Bradley, #5)
  • The Devil at Saxon Wall (Mrs. Bradley, #6)
  • Dead Men's Morris (Mrs. Bradley, #7)
  • Come Away, Death (Mrs. Bradley, #8)
  • St. Peter's Finger (Mrs. Bradley, #9)
  • Printer's Error (Mrs. Bradley, #10)

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