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A Few Right Thinking Men

(Rowland Sinclair #1)

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3.70  ·  Rating details ·  877 ratings  ·  200 reviews
Rowland Sinclair is an artist and a gentleman. In Australia's 1930s the Sinclair name is respectable and influential, yet Rowland has a talent for scandal.

Even with thousands of unemployed lining the streets, Rowland's sheltered world is one of exorbitant wealth, culture and impeccable tailoring. He relies on the Sinclair fortune to indulge his artistic passions and friend
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Paperback, 349 pages
Published June 1st 2010 by Pantera Press
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3.70  · 
Rating details
 ·  877 ratings  ·  200 reviews


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Phrynne
Feb 16, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 5000-books
This was a very interesting introduction to a series which I think I am going to like very much. Why only three stars then?

The three stars are for:-
* The characters, especially Rowland who has the makings of being a book hero. He is charming, rich, honest, thoughtful and smart. What more could you ask for? His friends and family are all interesting characters as well.
* The period setting 0f Australia during the Depression years. We get to visit the city and the outback and see the vast differen
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PattyMacDotComma
3.5★

‘Don’t you do anything?’ asked Edna.

He smiled. ‘I’m the youngest son, Ed. . . My role is to keep bad company and squander the family fortune.’


And Rowland Sinclair does. Well, he keeps some pretty questionable company, and although he’s not squandering the family fortune, he’s housing several dissident artists in one of his wealthy family’s homes in Sydney. By dissident, I mean left-leaning and Communist (far left) activists who love nothing better than orating from soapboxes in the park.
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Brenda
Rowland Sinclair – Rowly to his friends – was dining with his elderly uncle, Rowland Sinclair and as usual, enjoying the lively banter between the two of them. But when Rowly was informed a day or two later by the police that his uncle had been murdered, he was shocked and saddened. With the police seemingly doing nothing to find his killer/s, Rowly vowed to find them himself.

With the country in the throes of tensions caused by the Depression, and agitators on both sides of Parliament firing th
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Carolyn
I enjoyed this introduction to Rowland Sinclair and his artistic friends. Set in the Great Depression of the 1930s with high unemployment and poverty, political factions (communist, fascist, conservative) are competing for power and either trying to disrupt or defend the current government. As the son of a wealthy grazier, Rowland doesn't want for money but lives a bohemian life as an artist, sharing his wealthy home with fellow artists and poets. When his favourite uncle is assaulted and killed ...more
Ingrid
Jul 17, 2019 rated it did not like it
DNF. I gave up after 150 pages. It's very slow going, so much so that I really got annoyed with it and the subject of politics didn't help.
Marianne
Mar 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
4.5 ★s
A Few Right Thinking Men is the first book in the Rowland Sinclair series by award-winning Australian author, Sulari Gentill. When gentleman artist Rowland Sinclair’s favourite uncle dies following a savage beating in his own home, the police seem fixated on his elderly housekeeper at the expense of doing any real investigating. Information volunteered by the victim of a similar attack leads Rowly to suspect that it’s the work of the New Guard, the face of an increasing fascist presence in
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Irene Sauman
Jan 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Life throughout the world was unsettled in the 1930s, with the Great Depression, mass unemployment and political unrest. In Australia, depending on your own circumstances, you were a part of, or feared, Communism, Facsicm or the Old Guard conservatives who wished to maintain the status quo established pre-World War One.
The story of these unsettled times in New South Wales is told through Rowland Sinclair, wealthy young gentleman who has turned his back on his privileged upbringing and works as a
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Shelleyrae at Book'd Out
Sulari Gentill’s historical mystery series featuring Rowland Sinclair has long been on my radar. I regret that it has taken me a decade to start it, though on the plus side, there are a further eight books ahead of me to enjoy.

A Few Right Thinking Men is set in New South Wales, Australia during the early 1930’s. It is a period of great political upheaval where, in the wake of The Great Depression, tensions are mounting resulting in the rapid growth of extremist organisations.
Rowland Sinclair, a
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Rebecca
Jul 28, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I was given this book as a gift; I have no working knowledge of Australian history, so I felt a little intimidated, but that disappeared as soon as I read, "Rowland wiped his hands on his waistcoat. Not so many months ago, it had been a quality item of gentleman's attire. Now, it was stained with paint and smelled of turpentine. Rowland preferred it that way. He looked again at the painting with which he had battled all day and which, in the end, had defeated him."

This is Rowland Sinclair, a you
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Debbie Robson
Feb 15, 2015 rated it really liked it
As some of my review followers may be aware, I have begun to read more crime fiction over the last year or two. Generally it is crime fiction written in the forties and fifties and occasionally the odd Agatha Christie - more for setting than anything else and a break from the literary fiction I generally read.
When I came across a review for a Sulari Gentill (it wasn’t for the first in the series) I immediately took note. Here was an Australian woman writer, (I belong to the Australian Women Writ
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Calzean
The author has cleverly picked an interesting period of Australian history. The 1930s. The country is still recovering from WWI, is experiencing the great depression and there are patriots forming para-militias to fight the scourge of Communism. Amongst this setting Rowland Sinclair a man from a wealthy family and who lives well, but is also an artist and lives a life of Bohemian rhapsody. He has "adopted" three Communist aligned close friends, a sculptress, a painter and a poet. These three cha ...more
Lady Alexandrine
I enjoyed this book very much! Especially I liked the atmosphere of the New South Wales in the early 30s and the extremely likable bunch of characters. Rowley, Ed, Milt and Clyde are lovely misfits and I can't wait to read more about them.

What I loved most about this book were the characters and the dialogues. The main character is a wealthy artist Rowland Sinclair, known as Rowley to his friends. His friends are also artists, they are funny and charming. For the most of time they are just drif
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Nicole Alexander
Mar 25, 2015 rated it liked it
There’s nothing quite like the bohemian life in 1930s Australia. Throw in a wealthy gentleman artist, Rowland Sinclair, a mix-match of creative types living in his palatial home, and the murder of a much-loved uncle and you have the setting for Sulari Gentell’s historical crime novel. While A Few Right Thinking Men starts out with a murder, it soon devolves into an examination of the politics of the time. Fascism, communism, The New Guard, the Old Guard, the landed gentry …. Yes, there’s a lot i ...more
Pamela Shropshire
3.5 stars. This is a really fun first installment to an Australian crime fiction series roughly contemporary to the wonderful Phryne Fisher series by Kerry Greenwood. Like Phryne, Rowland Sinclair is from a posh conservative background but has, let’s say, more colourful friends.

Rowland is an artist, a serious one, not just a dilettante, and his closest friends in Sydney are from the artistic community. (In typical Aussie fashion, he is usually called Rowly.) These friends include Edna, a sculpt
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Rob Kitchin
Dec 04, 2012 rated it really liked it
I wasn’t really sure about A Few Right Thinking Men for the first 150 pages or so. Not a whole lot happens except the characters are introduced and the scene set for what follows. It is only with Rowly’s friends turning up at his brother’s house that the book sparks into life and then it’s a thoroughly enjoyable romp all the way to near the end. The strength of the story is its characterization, and its sense of place and history. Rowly and his friends are very engaging, and the other main chara ...more
Barb in Maryland
3.5 stars.
Interesting and entertaining start to a series set in 1930s Sydney, Australia. The main characters are engaging young members of the bohemian art set. Rowland Sinclair is the one with money and a posh background--he's also a rather good painter. He shares the Sinclair family house with Edna, who works in sculpture, Milton, a poet and Clyde, who also paints. Milton is also a fervent Communist. Rowland's older brother Wilfred does not approve, at all, of the house guests.
While the murder
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Dillwynia Peter
Apr 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
The early 1930s were a turbulent time in New South Wales: along with the world gripping Depression, the state was run by a very Left leaning Labor government. The fear was palpable, particularly amongst the monied people who were worried of a Communist revolution. These same people were war veterans and they had been militarised and knew how to organise a militia. The results were the Old and New Guards, and the worker Communist factions. The state was not a happy place.

This is the setting of A
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Silke
May 28, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Rowland Sinclair, an artist and youngest son to a respected and wealthy New South Wales family starts investigating the death of a close family member amid the rising political tensions of Australia and the world in the 1930ies.
I thoroughly enjoyed following Rowland's investigation, getting to know his family and close friends and also learning a lot about the society and political situations in Australia during said time. Thanks to the brilliant writing, an interesting cast of characters and a
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Kate
Dec 15, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I throughly enjoyed this mystery novel that delved into the political struggles in 1930s Sydney in the midst of the depression. It was a brilliant read and I was fascinated by Rowland Sinclair’s pursuit and expertise in painting - such a different occupation compared to other amateur detectives.
Karen
May 11, 2010 rated it liked it
A FEW RIGHT THINKING MEN introduces Rowland Sinclair to fans of Australian historical crime fiction. Set in 1930's Sydney and Yass, A FEW RIGHT THINKING MEN takes a reader into a world where the affects of the Great Depression are being felt, and the tension between the Proto-Fascists and Communists in Australian society veers dangerously close to civil war.

Not that the central character of this novel, Rowland Sinclair, is feeling any of the Depression affects. He is the youngest son of an extre
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Stacey DiFazio
Despite the far-too-many similarities with Kerry Greenwood's divine Phryne Fisher series, A Few Right Thinking Men still pales in comparison. Gentill's characters are not especially interesting, the plot wanders aimlessly and then fizzles out, and the editing is less than scrupulous. The author struggled to intelligently resolve the crime and the red herrings and detours and pointless scenes have only threads of historical context to weave them together. The first in this series did not impress ...more
Kate Forsyth
Jun 19, 2012 rated it liked it
The first in a series of murder mysteries set in 1930s, featuring the artist and dilettante Rowland Sinclair, whose fortune allows him to support his friends – a Communist poet, an alluring sculptress and a painter. With newspaper snippets of the times heading each chapter, the mood of the times is well-expressed. I must admit I was hoping it would be funnier and faster-paced, with less about politics and more about parties, but it was an engaging read.
Elisa
Oct 20, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Brilliant book, so well written... it just flows beautifully. This was never something I thought I'd be interested in (politics in 1930s Australia) and yet I found it fascinating. It was also hilarious in parts and I absolutely adored the characters. Really looking forward to the next one. Highly recommended.
Merry
Jun 10, 2017 rated it did not like it
Shelves: partly-read
I was pretty disappointed. It took me a while to realize that I wasn't getting any reading done, and after a few more tries I gave up and treated myself to something that promises to be more enjoyable.
Anjana
Jun 17, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I randomly read the book: Gentlemen Formerly Dressed (Rowland Sinclair #5) and enjoyed the concept. It is rare that I pick up a country and a time and social complications that I did not encounter in any earlier books. Rare mostly because I tend to stick to known people and places. 
This is the introduction of Rowland Sinclair and his band of merry men (and woman). It is a highly complex situation that they find themselves in. Rowland is from a family high on society's ladder but the antics of th
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Laurie
Jun 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Sydney Australia in 1931 is in the midst of a depression and political turmoil. Rowland Sinclair, an artist from a wealthy family, doesn’t take sides in the unrest that surrounds him. But when someone close to him is killed and rumors point toward one particular faction he is determined to find the culprits.

I loved this book! Why have I never heard of this series before? I can tell you right now…even before I finish this review, I will be reading more of this series.

Rowland Sinclair, or Rowly as
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TheMadHatter
A friend at work recommended this book as a must read in the historical murder mystery fiction genre. Set in Sydney (and Yass) in the 1930s it captures a time in Australian history that I know very little about (main focus was the depression and fear of communism spreading to Australia). Most chapters started with newspaper exerts that came straight from newspapers of the day (with the exception of a few) which was a great hook.

Roland Sinclair was a great lead - although I was frustrated it too
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Anna
Apr 03, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was an interesting novel, but I didn't enjoy it as much as I'd expected to. It took a while for the story to get going, and some episodes didn't really seem to contribute to the plot. The historical setting is interesting, and it's clear that a great deal of research has informed the book. While I liked some of the period detail, at times it seemed overdone, as if the author wanted to cram every bit of her research into the story.

Rowland Sinclair is a well-drawn character, and the author ni
...more
Tundra
Mar 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
I’ve read the Rowland Sinclair novels out of order (this is the first and I’ve read it 3rd) but I still really enjoyed romping along with Rowland and his friends even though I was already familiar with their backgrounds. I actually think this book was slightly better than the other two (which I did enjoy) because I learnt quite a bit about the politics that were occurring in 1930’s NSW - and yes it is all a little bizarre. Of course Rowland and his friends are all predictably highly likeable off ...more
Rebecca
A fun murder mystery set in 1930s Sydney, one of the many aspects of history I had absolutely no idea about until I read a fiction book set then. Very interesting, and I enjoyed getting to know the characters. A solid start to the series.
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Not so long ago, Sulari Gentill was a corporate lawyer serving as a director on public boards, with only a vague disquiet that there was something else she was meant to do. That feeling did not go away until she began to write. And so Sulari became the author of the Rowland Sinclair Mysteries: thus far, six historical crime novels chronicling the life and adventures of her 1930s Australian gentlem ...more

Other books in the series

Rowland Sinclair (10 books)
  • A Decline in Prophets (Rowland Sinclair #2)
  • Miles Off Course (Rowland Sinclair #3)
  • Paving the New Road (Rowland Sinclair #4)
  • Gentlemen Formerly Dressed (Rowland Sinclair, #5)
  • A Murder Unmentioned (Rowland Sinclair #6)
  • Give the Devil His Due (Rowland Sinclair #7)
  • A Dangerous Language (Rowland Sinclair #8)
  • All the Tears in China (Rowland Sinclair, #9)
  • A Testament of Character (Rowland Sinclair #10)
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