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Oscar Wilde and the Nest of Vipers

(The Oscar Wilde Murder Mysteries #4)

3.68  ·  Rating details ·  800 ratings  ·  119 reviews
Oscar Wilde and the Vampire Murders opens in 1890, at a glamorous party hosted by the Duke and Duchess of Albemarle. All of London’s high society—including the Prince of Wales—are in attendance at what promises to be the event of the season. Yet Oscar Wilde is more interested in another party guest, Rex LaSalle, a young actor who claims to be a vampire.

But the enter

Paperback, 426 pages
Published May 1st 2011 by John Murray (first published 2010)
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Särah Nour
It’s easily discernible by its title that Oscar Wilde and the Vampire Murders provides mere cheap entertainment and little substance. Gyles Brandreth has written a whole series centered on Oscar Wilde solving mysteries, and judging from this one, the series has little to offer besides the fun of characterized famous figures.

The novel opens in 1890, where the Duke and Duchess of Albemarle are hosting a glamorous party. Among the guests are Oscar Wilde and journalist Robert Sherard, and they encou
Jay Wright
This book works best if you approach it not as a murder mystery but a very elaborate character study of Oscar Wilde. The depiction of Oscar and all the other historical figures is spot-on but the mystery itself meanders A LOT and the final reveal was kind of a letdown (also the character in question was..... really boring).

Also there weren't nearly enough vampires.
Erika Williams
Nov 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Oscar Wilde fans
If I could choose one word to describe this book, it would be wicked. I love the Oscar Wilde murder mysteries. If it helps put this in perspective, I did my thesis on Oscar Wilde and the representation of sexuality in his plays, specifically "A Woman of No Importance," "Lady Windermere's Fan," and "The Importance of Being Earnest." This is one of those historical novels I can approach with an understanding of the characters and time period involved.

The book opens with Sherard visiting Oscar in P
Dec 31, 2015 rated it really liked it
The fourth of Gyles Brandeth's Oscar Wilde mysteries is perhaps, relatively speaking, the weakest yet, mainly because of the vampire element of the tale! However, set in 1890, it redeems itself with the witty dialogue that takes place between Oscar (particularly), Arthur Conan Doyle and Bram Stoker, who features prominently in this tale. One can avoid, or perhaps take little notice of the vampire side of the story for, as the Prince of Wales states at one point, 'Porphyria is a disease of the bl ...more
So I found this title on the library's new book shelf. I hadn't heard of the series before and it's nice that you can read them as standalones. The concept is intriguing and I think it works because the author does a ton of research and gets the historical stuff right. Even so, it took me awhile to get into it. The oscar wilde quotes scattered throughout kept me going until I wanted to finish it to figure out the mystery.

my fav quotes:

". . .more's the pity-- for a dreamer is one who can find his
Amy Cockram
Jul 18, 2011 rated it liked it

For a full review, please see my blog:

This is the 4th in Gyles Brandreth's series of Oscar Wilde mysteries (American title: Oscar Wilde and the Vampire Murders). In this 4th entry, the Prince of Wales asks Oscar to look into the mysterious death of a friend, whose body has been discovered half naked and with two wounds in her neck. Oscar is accompanied, again, by Robert Sherard, Conan Doyle and Bram Stoker.

The Oscar Wilde mysteries are good fun, steeped i
Sep 21, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have some issues with the book not having nearly enough vampires (real or not), and I was a little bit disappointed in the ending, but it was definitely a fun read and I'll probably be reading the others because I'm gay, dramatic, and love oscar wilde ...more
Tegan Boundy
Jun 06, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
most boring book I've ever read. ...more
Littered with Wildean aphorisms to the point of being a bit annoying. Gratuitous.
usagi ☆ミ
To all of those who ever wondered what would happen if you were to lock Arthur Conan Doyle and Oscar Wilde in a room, well, now we have one of several hilarious answers.

That said, this was a really fun read – mixing some of my favourite genres (and authors – I LOVE me some Wilde and Doyle – my IRL bookshelf has both omnibuses of their work). And you know what? It all worked, and worked well. There have been some mashups with similar uses of authors (the Austen genre is a huge example of this) wi
Jun 11, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In the interview at the back of Oscar Wilde & the Vampire Murders Gyles Brandreth says that one of the the things he wants most as a writer is "to write what the Victorians would have called 'a rattling good yarn'...I want to leave the reader satisfied." I would say that Brandreth does just that in all of his Oscar Wilde mystery stories--of which the Vampire Murders is the fourth.

Having read the first three, I was very ready to snatch this one up when it appeared on the library's New Arrivals sh
Apr 21, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

Oscar Wilde and the Vampire Murders was my first Gyles Brandreth book, but it sure won't be my last. I was a little afraid of this one, as I am not a fan of some of the mashups that have been so popular. I thought Brandreth's story was fun and entertaining! His characters, both historical (Wilde, Arthur Conan Doyle, The Prince of Wales. Bram Stoker) and fictional have depth and a certain smartness and wit that I enjoyed.

Coming after the Jack the Ripper murders, but still in the "Victorian" era,
Aug 03, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Discovered this by accident at the bookstore. Apparently it is number 4 in a series. The author states they do not have to be read in order. It is an historical novel series... main charadters in addition to Oscar Wilde are Bram Stoker, Arthur Conan Doyle, the Prince of Wales and others. At first I was not sure I was going to like the way it was written. The story is told totally through "documents" after the first chapter setup. Letters, telegrams, police reports, journal entries are used to te ...more
Roger Kean
Jun 10, 2011 rated it really liked it
Brandreth has opted in this, the 4th in the Oscar Wilde series, to construct the story entirely through the notes, telegrams, diary entries, postcards, and reports of the main protagonists: Arthur Conan Doyle, Robert Sherard, Bram Stoker, and the would-be vampire Rex LaSalle. In many cases this kind of structure distances the reader from the narrative, but Brandreth pulls it off in fine style, and it has the advantage of giving the reader intriguingly different views of the same events. Not fini ...more
Sep 09, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011, mystery, historical
I was vaguely aware that Gyles Brandreth had written novels involving Oscar Wilde so when I saw the bright orange cover on the library bookshelf I thought I would give it a go. It is an easy read, I finished the book in a weekend. In general I was pleasantly surprised although I did get a little bored at times. The plot was so so, but what kept me reading was the use of real characters of the time. I am quite interested in history but can never remember who belongs in what era so this was helpfu ...more
Her doctor insists that the beautiful young Duchess of Albemarle died of a sudden heart attack. But the Prince of Wales, a close friend of the Duchess's, is worried. He asks Oscar Wilde, the brilliant wit, and the young doctor Arthur Conan Doyle, to determine exactly what happened to the Duchess while avoiding any trace of scandal. Also concerned are Prince Eddy, heir apparent to the throne after his father, a handsome young man who insists he's a vampire, and Wilde's old friend, Bram Stoker, wh ...more
Feb 11, 2016 rated it did not like it
I picked up this book thinking it would be a cozy murder mystery. After a while it started to get on my nerves and at the end I was pretty much hate-reading it to see how many more humiliated, undressed, abused, voiceless, and frequently murdered female stereotypes these literary douchebags would come across before the end. This book made me hate (this book's version of) Oscar Wilde, whom I've loved since childhood. Steer clear. Reread Michel Faber's The Crimson Petal and the White instead. Plea ...more
This book gets a four star rating as I was so delighted to find a murder mystery starring Oscar Wilde, Conan Doyle, Bram Stoker and many other famous figures from my favourite era. I found the whole idea irresistible and I wasn't disappointed. Wilde, the infinitely quotable flamboyant genius, makes the perfect sleuth. A perfect light fluffy read. ...more
Oct 07, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I want to dislike these Wilde mysteries but they are very entertaining. The titles are funny and there is something inherently wrong with putting a huge, bloody spear on an iconic photograph. But they are good. Brandreth clearly does his homework and writes Wilde very well. The only complaint I have is that these stories tend to run a bit longer than they should but they are a lot of fun.
Andra Nicoara
Oct 02, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: humor, mystery
Another Oscar Wilde murder mystery that did not disappoint. More dynamic than the previous one in the series due to the assortment of letters, newspaper articles and journals presented.
Feb 11, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: books-i-own
It's easy to read and amusing. It's the sort of book you read simply to pass the time, or because you have nothing else better to read at the moment. However, it's still a nice book. ...more
Marthese Formosa
Nov 15, 2017 rated it really liked it
Loved this though I wish that the version that Oscar said was to 'protect' the prince and that there was another version. That said, in reality it was because of the prince that the murders happened. I definitely do not like monarchy or anyone that has a 'right' to rule and must be protected no matter what they do -_-. But also this book is hella gay/queer and it's written in a different format from the other previous books.

In previous books we got some chapters that were journal entries or tele
Oct 06, 2017 rated it it was ok
Rather tedious and a jumbled mess. Found this at the Branford book sale over the weekend and based on the back of book blurb thought I had discovered a little gem and a new mystery author to follow. Loved the premise - Oscar Wilde as detective with a gliterrati of notable authors of the time, including Arthur Conan Doyle and Bram Stoker in supporting roles, along with a few famous composers and scientists of the time. Each character was so typecast and flat! No true grit or personality to them. ...more
May 16, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017, owned, mystery
I'm very sorry to discover that this is the last unread Brandreth "Oscar Wilde" mystery left for me. This one takes advantage of the fact that Wilde and Bram Stoker overlapped not just in place (both were Irish and went to university there together; Stoker was actor-manager Henry Irving's factotum at the Lyceum Theatre) but in personal lives (Wilde was an early suitor of Florence Bascombe, Stoker's wife). Furthermore, Stoker was distantly related to Arthur Conan Doyle, a major figure in these Wi ...more
Apr 29, 2019 rated it liked it
In many ways I feel it would be easy for me to disparage this idea of a very fictionalized account of Oscar Wilde as a Kind of Holmes like consulting detective...given Vampirism is also in this account and Bram Stoker is also herein plus as a Watson type figure Arthur Conan Doyle and well....this should really be a cynical recipe for disaster...
However there is something about these books...I think Brandreth's love of all things Wildean and Oscar himself transcend the books and Oscars eccentrici
Sep 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It is 1890 and Oscar Wilde has been invited to a high society party in London.
All the glamorous people are there and everything is going swimmingly until that is the Duchess of Albemarle is found murdered.
Rumours are put about that it was a weak heart but Oscar and his friend Arthur Conan Doyle have seen the puncture marks on her neck.
Is this a case of vampirism....?
Rich in historic detail and name dropping of all the celebs of the day this is a ripping yarn with a huge dollop of fiction and a b
adrian hardwicke
A real rollicking read.

It's not often a book is actually FUN to read, but this is. Entertaining on so many levels. The whole premise is ridiculous (Oscar Wilde as Sherlock holmes) yet the author's skilful use of real people and historical events, draws the reader in and creates a world that's almost true. The best in the series so far.
Susan Jo Grassi
Feb 05, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
With so many real life characters in this mystery, it was like a bio/history lesson. The layout of the novels was intriguing with all the different characters adding letters or journal entries as the make up of the book. I am looking forward to starting at the beginning of the series as I found this novel very clever and an interesting read.
Aug 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Oscar Wilde and the Next of Vipers

This is yet another cracking Oscar Wilde mystery by Gyles Brandreth.
The story starts in Paris following Wilde's release from prison and is told as letters, journal entries and newspaper articles among others.
It is a fast moving novel and one I found hard to put down.
Highly recommended.
Marsha Valance
At a reception in 1890 for the Prince of Wales at the London home of the Duke and Duchess of Albemarle, Wilde is intrigued by an ethereal-looking young actor who claims to be a vampire. The Duchess of Albemarle is later discovered dead, with two tiny but deep marks on her throat. The Prince of Wales asks Wilde to investigate. Not the best of the series.
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Full name: Gyles Daubeney Brandreth.
A former Oxford Scholar, President of the Oxford Union and MP for the City of Chester, Gyles Brandreth’s career has ranged from being a Whip and Lord Commissioner of the Treasury in John Major’s government to starring in his own award-winning musical revue in London’s West End. A prolific broadcaster (in programmes ranging from Just a Minute to Have I Got News f

Other books in the series

The Oscar Wilde Murder Mysteries (7 books)
  • Oscar Wilde and a Death of No Importance
  • Oscar Wilde and the Ring of Death
  • Oscar Wilde and the Dead Man's Smile (The Oscar Wilde Murder Mysteries, #3)
  • Oscar Wilde and the Vatican Murders (The Oscar Wilde Murder Mysteries #5)
  • Oscar Wilde and the Murders at Reading Gaol
  • Jack the Ripper: Case Closed

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