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Murder Under the Christmas Tree: Ten Classic Crime Stories for the Festive Season

(Murderous Christmas Stories #1)

3.56  ·  Rating details ·  605 ratings  ·  80 reviews

Murder most festive...


A locked room mystery solved with a flourish on Boxing Day.
Blackmail on Christmas Eve.
A missing jewel discovered in a very festive hiding place.
A body slumped in a chair on Christmas morning, still listening to carols.
The midnight theft of a gift intended for a saint.


Crime doesn't take a holiday, so these - and many more - are the puzzles that

...more
Kindle Edition, 288 pages
Published November 3rd 2016 by Profile Books
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Average rating 3.56  · 
Rating details
 ·  605 ratings  ·  80 reviews


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Kirsty
Dec 08, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: december-2016
When Akylina and I met up in Edinburgh at the end of November, we decided to purchase two copies of Murder Under the Christmas Tree to read together. With essay deadlines and the like, our collaboration didn't quite go to plan, but I thought I'd post my review of the book regardless. I decided to open it on the first of December and read one of the ten stories per day, as a kind of constructive advent treat.

With regard to crime novels, cosy crime is definitely my favourite sub-genre; I adore
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Theresa
Dec 15, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: crimes
If there's one thing better than Christmas it's probably a lot of things, because at Christmas I have to spend all my money and work too many days without one off and also it's too hot. But one of the better things I guess is Christmassy murders. Someone died, but festively. If you're going to die, you might as well ruin everyone else's Christmas on your way out I guess.
Akylina
Even though the lovely Kirsty and I initially planned to read this collection of festive short stories upon the beginning of December, due to essay deadlines and a very hectic schedule, I began reading this on the 14th of December instead, making it just in time for Christmas Eve by reading one story per day.

It is no secret that I adore mysteries and crime stories and I do admit to having a very soft spot for the classic, cosy ones, like Agatha Christie's or Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's. Upon
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Jo Jenner
Dec 26, 2016 rated it really liked it
A great collection of ten Christmas related murder mysteries. Some are very loosely linked to Christmas and others could only happen during the festivities. The tales move through the ages and through the great writers. Enjoy the tales of Lord Peter Wimsey, Brother Cadfael, Campion and Father Brown and come right up to date with a story from Val McDermid and even enjoy a trip to the panto with Inspector Rebus.
I wouldn't recommend this for only old time of the year but definitely worth a read to
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Donnah Brown
Jan 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
An enjoyable mix of short stories to suit all tastes. I found a couple very spooky, there were some old fashioned tales, along side more modern mysteries. An eclectic assortment of characters, some odd, some wicked, some difficult, while others are definitely more likeable. Easy read, you can dip in and out of at leisure.
Dee Gurganus
Jan 07, 2017 rated it liked it
I am not much on short stories, but what intrigued me about this book was the Christmas theme and the authors. The mysteries themselves were interesting and for the most part kept me guessing.
Pamela
May 24, 2017 rated it really liked it
Charming collection of crime stories linked by a Christmas theme. The Golden Age favourites such as Marsh and Allingham are represented here, with famous characters such as Sherlock Holmes and Father Brown putting in an appearance. Modern authors Ian Rankin and Val McDermid also feature. Theft, murder, blackmail and espionage figure in the list of crimes so there really is something for everyone.

Easy and enjoyable read for the Christmas season.
Nancy Ellis
Nov 18, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Entertaining collection of classic short stories set around Christmas time. My two favorites were by Margery Allingham (featuring Inspector Alleyn, of course) and the always wonderful Ellis Peters with another Brother Cadfael tale. I never tire of revisiting Brother Cadfael!
Elizabeth
May 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: christmas, own, england
Excellent book. I didn't even try Holmes and there was one other I didn't like, but the other eight were most excellent!
I highly recommend this book.
Katrina
Dec 12, 2016 rated it liked it
I found this one difficult to rate because some of the stories are a bit disappointing, including the one by Dorothy Sayers - but others are good.
Karen
An enjoyable collection of stories. My favourites were by Carter Dickson, Ellis Peters and Val McDermid.
Eleanor Luhar
This is the third and final book I was given for Christmas, another collection of classic crime stories. It's similar toMurder On Christmas Eve, so I'm not going to write too much in this review. Out of the two, though, this is my favourite collection.

The stories in this collection are, for the most part, very good. The last couple weren't as engaging, but there's always going to be one or two you don't like. This collection even includes a tale about Sherlock Holmes (and Watson, of course) bt
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Iona Sharma
Dec 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018
I really enjoyed this, largely because the line-up is completely stellar: among others, it includes Ian Rankin, GK Chesterton, Dorothy L. Sayers, Ngaio Marsh, Val McDiarmid and Margery Allingham. The Chesterton story is a Father Brown story and delightfully unhinged - while it doesn't want to acknowledge it, it's steampunk SF as well a detective story - I also really liked the McDiarmid story, which has incidental queerness. Surprising no one, though, the best story in this collection is the ...more
Mark
Dec 30, 2016 rated it really liked it
Another good read. This is a collection of short stories, all with an element of crime involved and all taking place around Christmas time. The settings vary, but could mostly be described as classic, given that most of the authors featured here come from the early 20th century. The most modern tale is a Rebus short story from Ian Rankin.
The settings invariably invoke a nostalgic feel for Christmas past - most of them are set in big country houses and feature a range of characters all gathering
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Lisa Kucharski
Dec 06, 2018 rated it liked it
Would rate this 3 1/2 if I could. I’ve read some of the stories before, but I do like them quite a bit. The one had hadn’t read were good and a bit more contemporary but fit well with the older mysteries.

The book doesn’t have the usual number of stories since they are all a bit longer than shorter- which also makes for a bit richer experience.

If you have a mystery lover who likes Xmas stories, this would be a good book to get. Also if they like both older and newer mysteries.
Zoe
Jan 11, 2018 rated it liked it
Solid collection of short stories, including a few classics. Several stories could have used an introduction--The Price of Light, for example, is the last story in the collection and the only one set in the 12th century. That was a little jarring for me, and I imagine it would be even more confusing for someone unfamiliar with Cadfael.
Katie
Dec 04, 2019 rated it it was ok
I wanted to enjoy these short stories but I just couldn’t get into them, the only one that I particularly enjoyed was the one written by Ian Rankin. I found most of them a bit dull and uneventful. I thought perhaps maybe the short story format isn’t for me as I don’t read many short stories however I can’t imagine that I’d have enjoyed any of these if they were longer. Not for me.
David Pearce
Dec 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is a very good anthology with no real dips in quality, which you always expect in these cases. The range of writers is very interesting, moving from the classic stories involving Sherlock Holmes, Lord Peter Wimsey and Campion to more modern short stories. I would say that seven of the stories are genuinely engaging and three pass the time pleasantly. A real festive treat.
Lucy
Dec 25, 2017 rated it liked it
Really fun anthology with many great mystery short stories. A handful of stories were led by characters I recognized and loved, like Sherlock Holmes and Father Brown. Sadly, some were a chore to get through, and others didn't even have murder. Still a worthwhile anthology for some holiday-themed mayhem, though.
Karen
Apr 03, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Nine out of ten excellent stories is a very good score for an anthology, the only one I didn't like was the G K Chesterton, and I've never managed to get into his books. They range from Sherlock Holmes, and an early Dorothy Sayers/Peter Wimsey through Ngaio Marsh and Edmund Crispin to Val McDermid and Ellis Peters. Several do not involve murder but have another puzzle to be solved.
Linda Kenny
Jan 20, 2018 rated it liked it
We spent Christmas in Edinburgh and this was one of our presents. One doesn’t get to sit down very often to read a collection of short stories so I enjoyed that change. The stories varied in quality but quite a few authors were featured were ones I’ve read. Even thought the holidays are past, I’d still recommend.
Lotte
Dec 03, 2017 rated it liked it
Difficult to rate and difficult to write a review about. Some stories were great, funny, well-written and exciting. But others were just disappointing. There were one or two that I found barely had a plot or a point, and did not deserve to be in any anthology of a kind, but others were good to read so it's really a mixed bag.
Susan
Dec 26, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: mysteries
A mix of modern and classic mystery authors pose ten holiday puzzles to amuse and challenge. The collection includes stories by Val McDermid, Ian Rankin, Ellis Peters, Margery Allingham, Carter Dickson, Arthur Conan Doyle, Dorothy L. Sayers, Ngaio Marsh, Edmund Crispin, and G. K. Chesterton.
Carol
Apr 13, 2018 rated it liked it
Reserved in Nov, but only just available from my library :( Worth the wait? Nope...not my genre at all. Too cosy, too predictable, too polite, too much going on. A bit like Christmas really....bah, humbug.
Mike
Jul 24, 2017 rated it liked it
A reasonable handful of crime stories set at Christmas. All evoke the spirit of Christmas quite well but the last of them, a Brother Cadfael mystery, towers above the others in quality of writing.

I'll add this one to my list of Christmas stories I read every year.
Jan
Jan 30, 2019 rated it liked it
Actually read Murder Under the Christmas Tree-Ten Classic Crime Stories for the Festive Season, but that title doesn’t show up on Goodreads. A couple really entertaining stories (The Necklace of Pearls and Persons or Things Unknown), but the others were just so so.
Sammeh
Mar 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Review to come!
Ann Goodwin
Dec 02, 2018 rated it liked it
Interesting mix of classic and newer stories.
Teresa
Jan 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
Nice easy read... a collection of short stories from big names in the mystery genre.
Sheila Howes
Some stories better than others. There are 10 in the collection.
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Murderous Christmas Stories (3 books)
  • Murder on Christmas Eve: Classic Mysteries for the Festive Season
  • A Very Murderous Christmas: Ten Classic Crime Stories for the Festive Season