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Appleby's End (Sir John Appleby #10)

3.96  ·  Rating details ·  281 Ratings  ·  21 Reviews
Appleby's End was the name of the station where Detective Inspector John Appleby got off the train from Scotland Yard. But that was not the only coincidence. Everything that happened from then on related back to stories by Ranulph Raven, Victorian novelist - animals were replaced by marble effigies, someone received a tombstone telling him when he would die, and a servant ...more
Paperback, 211 pages
Published July 1st 1983 by Harper & Row (first published 1945)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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John Frankham
Feb 13, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime-detective
One of the best John Appleby crime novels from Michael Innes, this one from just after the war: surreal, fantastical happenings in deepest rural England. Cows, dogs and village idiots turned to stone, a servant of the Manor found dead with only his head showing above the snow, a family of impoverished Ravens whose servants and village members seem to resemble them, pigs sold on the never-never, and only Scotland Yard's Appleby to solve and obfuscate. Erudite and intellectual in the telling, in t ...more
Leslie
Feb 21, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mysteries, british
If you can put up with the writing style, which is erudite to the point of pretention, and have a taste for the bizarre, then Innes will be your cup of tea.

While I am generally not sure I do like the writing style, I do appreciate the references and the plots always intrigue me. This one doesn't disappoint and there is a twist in the last sentence!
Sally
Jul 15, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobooks
I've read a few of Michael Innes' Appleby stories, and I have enjoyed them, but perhaps not as much as they could be enjoyed had I more familiarity with the many literary references that Innes rolls out in the course of the story-telling. This book is not one to listen to (audiobook) at bedtime, as it requires more attention than a drowsy listener/reader would likely give it.

One reviewer mentioned that this story reminded him of Jerome Jerome's "Three Men in a Boat . . ." and I had had the very
...more
Linda
Even though it was necessary to read this book with a dictionary nearby, I found the zany characters and situations humorous and entertaining. We will be contrasting and comparing the book with Donna Andrew's Murder with Peacocks. Further comments to follow to follow the discussion in Nov but I must admit I enjoyed the book in spite of the polysyllabic vocabulary. It brought to mind another book--Three Men in a Boat Not to Mention the Dog--and the cleverness of a Jasper Fforde novel.
Contrarywise
Jul 01, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
In a class by itself. Donnish humor. Obscurely criminal behavior. I've read it well over ten times in the last forty years, and only wish I could read it again for the third or fourth time. Contains one of the most unusual courtships in literature.
Ann
Feb 26, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, anglophilia
I like the Appleby's novels because they are so fantastical, so far-fetched that I can't help but smile when I read them. In this particular story, Inspector Appleby starts out on a long train journey, at the end of which he realizes he can't get to his final destination. As it's the middle of winter, he accepts an invitation to stay with a freshly made train acquaintance, Mr. Raven. It turns out that several of Mr. Raven's family members were also in the same compartment, and they all set out f ...more
Nick Phillips
Aug 12, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Isn't it funny how a novel written and set in the early decades of the 20th century reads nothing like we would expect it to. Our own distant knowledge of times such as the 1930s is coloured by the prejudice of 90 years and we expect writers of that time to write in the same way as a modern writer setting a novel then would. References should be to Art Deco and the rise of Hitler, not to Meccano and Sherlock Holmes which are our things.

Anyway, great book, as if Poirot had been created by PG Wode
...more
Eric Tanafon
"Appleby's Dream"

"Appleby's End" begins with the eponymous Inspector taking a train journey. The reader is quickly plunged into a dreamlike atmosphere. Crossing the dark winter landscape, the train passes places with names out of some strange allegory: Drool, Snarl, Linger, Long Dream Manor, and of course, Appleby's End itself. On the train the Inspector meets a Mr. Raven, who is working on an encyclopedia, and is therefore nearly omniscient about everything that begins with the letters A throug
...more
Emily
May 18, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Appleby's End was the name of the station where Detective Inspector John Appleby got off the train from Scotland Yard. But that was not the only coincidence. Everything that happened from then on related back to stories by Ranulph Raven, Victorian novelist - animals were replaced by marble effigies, someone received a tombstone telling him when he would die, and a servant was found buried up to his neck in snow, dead. Why did Ranulph Raven's mysterious descendants make such a point of inviting ...more
Avd.Reader
Inspector Appleby of Scotland Yard is on his way to investigate some thefts and practical jokes in the English countryside in the middle of winter. His journey takes a strange turn when he meets the members of the eccentric Raven family on the train, accepts an invitation to spend the night at their country manor, and winds up getting out with them at a station named Applebys End. What follows is a truly bizarre adventure. Michael Innes mysteries are usually great fun to read. This one was good ...more
Dave
Oct 02, 2013 rated it it was ok
Can't deny the wit, or the erudition, or the sure hand of the author. But my early excitement and interest based on those qualities dwindled as I read, because this really isn't a book about real people--it's mysterious whimsy about the donnishly quirky. Which is OK, but not as funny as P.G. Wodehouse. Nor as academically wacky as Edmund Crispin. Nor as mysterious as Dorothy Sayers, or any of a hundred other golden age authors. I finished reading it and am glad that I don't have to read it any m ...more
Susan
Feb 07, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Scotland Yard detective John Appleby is trapped on a slow train, to investigate "strange happenings," when he meets first Everard Raven, the noted encyclopedist, and then the rest of the Raven family, most notably Everard's cousin Judith, a sardonic but lovely young woman. Soon Appleby finds himself puzzling over the relationships among various rustic families. In this case, Appleby must not only figure out what's going on, but also let his colleague come to an erroneous conclusion, the better t ...more
Connie
Nov 01, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I wish I had bought this for my Kindle because then I would have had a dictionary handy. I consider myself fairly well read but this was a challenge. I did enjoy the humor throughout the book and the character of the Scotland Yard detective. Read it for my book group in Oxford. Had never heard of this series or the author before.
Michelle
Wow, I didn't think I'd learn so many big words from a mystery book! The verbose writing was sometimes tedious, but I appreciated the combination of well-structured sentences in the mystery genre. The mystery itself wasn't so intriguing, and the solution/resolution wasn't crystal clear. I enjoyed reading this 1940s detective story more for the writing than the puzzle.
spisok_korablei
Mar 19, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
At the end there came a feeling that I had been having my leg pulled the whole time. Not because of the briskness the curtains fell with, but rather because of the appalling tameness everyone lined up with to hear the chiding for their mischief.
Nevertheless the book is insanely readable even by Stewart's high standards and by far the weirdest of his I've read so far.
Cindy
Sep 03, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: vintage English mystery fans
Shelves: mysteries
Just finished rereading this one. Inspector Appleby of Scotland Yard is sent to rural England in the middle of winter to investigate some mysterious thefts and practical jokes. On his way he meets the eccentric Raven family and discovers a dead body. One of the funniest in this series, with that dry English humor that you might miss if you read it too quickly.
Kathleen
Mar 23, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015
What a strange, funny book! It's hard to describe, but it's a bit like some early Hitchcock movies (39 Steps, The Lady Vanishes) that combine romance and comedy with mystery. I love the absurd sense of humor and dry writing style.
Mary Kay Kare
Very distressing. I have read this book at least twice before & remembered it being hilarious. This time it was a joyless slog. Maybe I should wait until my spirits are higher, much higher, before trying to read it again.
Particle_Person
One of the best Appleby mysteries. I do love romance and mystery mixed together.
Linda Chrisman
Mar 24, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of my favorites. Witty, intelligent and a great story. A very elegant writer who can turn a memorable phrase. A Marx Brothers plot written by an Oxford Don.
Tatiana
rated it really liked it
Jul 09, 2007
Brackman1066
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Les Blatt
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Kathy Moore
rated it it was amazing
Dec 30, 2011
Christopher Tookey
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Solita Storia
rated it it was amazing
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Connie
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Kim
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87958
Michael Innes was the pseudonym of John Innes MacKintosh (J.I.M.) Stewart (J.I.M. Stewart).

He was born in Edinburgh, and educated at Edinburgh Academy and Oriel College, Oxford. He was Lecturer in English at the University of Leeds from 1930-1935, and spent the succeeding ten years as Jury Professor of English at the University of Adelaide, South Australia.

He returned to the United Kingdom in 19
...more
More about Michael Innes...

Other Books in the Series

Sir John Appleby (1 - 10 of 36 books)
  • Death at the President's Lodging (Sir John Appleby, #1)
  • Hamlet, Revenge! (Sir John Appleby, #2)
  • Lament for a Maker (Sir John Appleby, #3)
  • Stop Press  (Sir John Appleby, #4)
  • The Secret Vanguard  (Sir John Appleby, #5)
  • There Came Both Mist And Snow  (Sir John Appleby, #6)
  • Appleby On Ararat  (Sir John Appleby, #7)
  • The Daffodil Affair  (Sir John Appleby, #8)
  • The Weight Of The Evidence  (Sir John Appleby, #9)
  • A Night Of Errors  (Sir John Appleby, #11)

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