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A Dark And Stormy Night

(Dorothy Martin #10)

3.78  ·  Rating details ·  401 ratings  ·  69 reviews
When Dorothy Martin and her husband, retired Chief Constable Alan Nesbitt, are invited to a country house weekend, they expect nothing more explosive than the Guy Fawkes fireworks. Having read every Agatha Christie ever written, Dorothy should have known better. Rendered isolated and incommunicado by the storm, Dorothy and Alan nevertheless manage to work out what in the ...more
Hardcover, 192 pages
Published April 1st 2011 by Severn House Publishers
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Average rating 3.78  · 
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Ivonne Rovira
Jun 18, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of Golden Age detective stories with a twist
Author Jeanne M. Dams has written a valentine to those Golden Age house mysteries in which a motley crew is trapped in a stately home, cut off from civilization due to inclement weather, with a murderer.

American ex-pat Dorothy Martin and her English husband Alan Nesbit, retired Chief Constable of the Belleshire Constabulary, accept an invitation to Branston Abbey, a centuries’ old manor house in Kent now owned by a very wealthy American couple. A cast of disparate characters have gathered for a
This honestly should be more like a 3 star if we were going by more objective standards (it was fine), but for my personal tastes, this is more like a 1.5. These are tropes I love that were practically ruined by how frustrating I found the authorial voice and how incessantly the American-ness of the Americans in this story is referenced. Why is this English country estate teeming with Americans who speak in English idioms and constantly talk about the fact that they are Americans? That's a great ...more
Julie  Durnell
Jun 20, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery, england-uk
This was my first Dorothy Martin mystery and it won't be the last! I loved this traditional English manor mystery, not overly clichéd, actually kept my interest very well. The mansion description made me want to explore right along with house party guests. Dorothy is a darling, albeit a cossetted one by her ever-loving husband, their relationship is almost too perfect! The cast of characters were portrayed so well, right down to the "servants" Mr John Bates and his wife, Rose. I plan on going ...more
Jun 16, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Dorothy Martin and her husband Alan Nesbitt are invited to a country house weekend at atmospheric Branston Abbey. They're looking forward to a relaxing break but the weekend coincides with a violent storm and the Abbey is damaged as well as being cut off from the surrounding countryside by floods and by a power cut which lasts for days. When Dorothy discovers a skeleton in the grounds revealed by the uprooting of a large oak tree it seems they have stepped into an Agatha Christie type mystery.

Jan 01, 2013 rated it liked it
I started off my 2013 reading with a fun, little cozy mystery by Jeanne M. Dams. Jeanne is from Indiana, just like me. And, like me, she has read British mysteries all her life and has an affinity for all things British. As she says in her bio on her web page:

I knew it was unlikely I could ever afford to live in a lovely little seventeenth-century cottage somewhere in Kent or Sussex—but if I created a character who did just that, I could live her life vicariously, and instead of costing me a
Apr 15, 2014 rated it it was amazing

5.0 out of 5 stars A Mystery lovers book., April 20, 2014

This review is from: A Dark and Stormy Night (A Dorothy Martin Mystery) (Kindle Edition)

"A Dark and Stormy Night" by Jeanne Dams.

Dorothy Martin and her husband Alan Nesbitt (ret. Chief Constable) are invited to the friends country estate Branston Abbey.
An array of friends, relatives, an au pair that know the mansion inside out and back again, an American photographer, A woman solicitor, the original owner of the estate as well as the
Oswego Public Library District
With a nod to Agatha Christie, Jeanne Dams gives readers A Dark and Stormy Night, the tenth in her Dorothy Martin series. Dorothy and her husband are invited to a historic English Abbey to celebrate Guy Fawkes Night, however a bad storm blows through stranding the guests at the party. Trapped on the premises, Dorothy and her husband are soon investigating old skeletons, missing persons, and dead bodies. Who among the party guests is the culprit? That’s up to Dorothy Martin to find out. A Dark ...more
Jan 31, 2016 rated it really liked it
I loved Jeanne M. Dams' Dorothy Martin series, set in England, and was delighted to find this one that I missed reading at the time it was published. Dorothy is an older woman, an American, who moved to England and is now married to Alan Nesbitt, a retired British police Chief officer. The books are cozy mysteries and delightful to read.

Dorothy and Alan are invited to a restored historic ancient abbey in the country for a week-end to celebrate Guy Fawkes Day. So the scene is set for a classic
Nov 15, 2012 rated it really liked it
Expat Dorothy Martin and her husband, retired Chief Constable Alan Nesbitt, are invited to a country house for the Guy Fawkes weekend. Dorothy and the other guests are stranded by a slightly unbelievable storm, setting them up for a classic British country house mystery. A body is found among the roots of a fallen oak tree, a guest is murdered and another disappears. Isolated and unable to communicate with the outside world Dorothy and Alan must investigate.
Feb 24, 2014 rated it liked it
Setting her tale in old abbey which is isolated by a storm, Jeanne Dams weaves a satisfying mystery. Dorothy Martin and her husband retired Chief Constable Alan Nesbitt play well off each other as they lead the reader to the culprits.
Jun 11, 2019 rated it liked it
A weekend at a country house...what could be better? Dorothy Martin soon finds out that almost anything would be. A severe storm cuts off the estate from the world, and Dorothy and her husband must find out what in the world has been happening at ancient Branston Abbey over the past 20 years. I like this series---Dorothy is a no-nonsense amateur detective with few scruples about ferreting out facts. I look forward to #11 in the series.
Jun 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing
My first time tackling a Dorothy Martin mystery novel and I LOVED it. The couple dynamics of Dorothy and Alan is lovely, both being witty and alert. They complement one another. The mystery itself is interesting as it takes us back in history set in England's country side chateau scenery with servant and butler scenery. Murders & plot dating from 50 years ago to modern days. Light read.
Sandra A Prickett
I have recently read another book by this author. I find her to be intricate in details dropping slight hints about the perpetrator and then taking you on a totall new idea and thought to explore. Really puts your dectective skills to use. Plan on reading more of these
Mar 10, 2019 rated it liked it
This was much better than the last one I read (Crisis in the Cathedral). I did figure out the villan early on just not the motives. Dorothy was her usual wimpy self - you would think she’d get used to a dead body or two but generally a pleasant read.
Apr 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Loved this book, what should have been a long weekend in the country in a lovely old mansion with friends turned out to be a nightmare. A major storm with high winds and nonstop downpours. The worst storm they had in years destroyed the gardens and almost all the trees. No heat no electric flooding and a destroyed bridge. No one can get in or out.
Jacqueline Corcoran
Apr 04, 2012 rated it really liked it
Jeanne Dams authors a long-standing cozy mystery series about Dorothy Martin, an elderly American elderly sleuth who lives in England with her British ex-detective husband. In her fifteenth installment, A Dark and Stormy Night, Jeanne Dams employs the classic English manor setting in which a snowstorm keeps the guests all housebound while old – and then new – murders are discovered.

Though I enjoyed reading the story, I found it confusing at times, especially the connection between the two
Jul 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: own, mystery-cozy, 2017
This was a perfect little gem of an English country house mystery.
Oct 06, 2013 rated it liked it
Dorothy Martin and her husband retired Chief Constable Alan Nesbitt are invited to a country house weekend at a beautifully restored old mansion. It is Guy Fawkes Day and a huge fireworks display is promised. Thirteen guests arrive at the mansion and enjoy touring the house and a dinner of consommé julienne, sole Bonne Femme, chicken in a creamy cheese sauce and perfectly cooked vegetables, followed by the salad course and orange soufflé. Their room is authentic Tudor with paneled oak walls, ...more
Sep 13, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mysteries
If you like the mysteries of Agatha Christie or Dorothy Sayers, then here is one for you, complete with eccentric guests and murders. American expat Dorothy Martin who is married to retired Chief Constable Alan Nesbitt is invited to spend the weekend at a restored country mansion. The expected purpose is to enjoy the Guy Fawkes Day festivities and the company of friends. When a terrible and unexpected storm destroys the estate's gardens, it also traps everyone at the house, without power or ...more
Lori McD
Dorothy and Alan spend a weekend in the country at Dorothy's friends Tom & Lynn's invitation. But they encounter a lot of tension between the guests in the country manor, including the rich American owners, the previous English titled owner, a famous dancer, a priest, a barrister, and the owner's in-laws. Add in a frightful, hurricane wind speed storm that cuts them off from electricity, telephones, and the nearby village... throw in a body or two... and then watch people start ...more
Bebe (Sarah) Brechner
Aug 25, 2012 rated it really liked it
I'll admit that this series may only appeal to hardcore cozy mystery fans, but there is something very addictive about the warm hearted, slightly blundering American woman of a certain age who has chosen to live in her beloved England as somewhat of a fish out of water. Over the course of the series, she conveniently marries a retired police inspector, which gives her access to even more murders and procedural plots. They complement each other very well.

This is one of the best of the series, as
Leslie Zampetti
May 31, 2011 rated it liked it
A delightful modern cozy, Dams revels in the genre's conventions with only the slightest of winks. Christie would have loved this - and while it references And Then There Were None, it doesn't mimic it. Mrs. Dorothy Martin has two new titanium hips and is thoroughly bored with recuperation, so when another expat American friend invites her to a quintessential English country house party, how can she refuse? Off she goes with her husband, retired Chief Constable Alan Nesbit to Branston Abbey.

Jun 28, 2011 rated it did not like it
I love a good English country house murder mystery and I am a hardcore Agatha Christie fan so the premise of A Dark and Stormy Night sounded right up my alley, but I gave up about 40 pages in. I've never read the others in the series, but now feel totally disinclined to.

Dislikeable, stereotypical characters and less-than-engaging dialogue had my attention wandering. Also, when I really love a book it doesn't matter what the age and sex of the main character is, I can still identify with their
Kathy Rogers
Jan 03, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery, 2013
This series definitely falls in the "cozy" category - an older American woman who lives in England and seems to be plagued by dead bodies falling into her path. I like the character and have enjoyed following the relationships in the stories. I've read this one out of turn - it's the last in the series and although I have the one before it here to read, I accidentally skipped it. (It's the last on my list and I've started it.) This final book is my least favorite. There were a lot of characters ...more
Jul 06, 2013 rated it liked it
This is a classic English country house murder mystery where a group of people are isolated due to a storm and dead bodies start turning up. In this case, some of the deaths go back several decades, but it follows the usual situation of a house party unable to reach the authorities for help. Fortunately for them, one of the guests is a retired Chief Constable, so they are not entirely without investigative resources, but it's hard even for him since he no longer has the authority he used to ...more
Mar 27, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: mysteries
An invitation to a house party at Branston Abbey is the beginning of an investigation into a couple of old corpses. While doing that there is also an epic storm which cuts the electricity and raises the rivers so that the guests cannot get back to civilization, nor make contact with anyone. This story went kind of slow for me; not a lot of action but still a good read. I did have it figured out as to who had the best motive for covering everything up, just at the time that Dorothy slept on it ...more
May 15, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: mystery
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Lynn Lerch
Nov 18, 2011 rated it liked it
Dorothy Martin and her husband go to visit an estate owned by a friend. An assortment of people are there. The owner of the house has his siter-in-law and her husband there too. A storm comes up and isolates the estate from the nearest town. A tree is uprooted and a skelton appears tangled in the roots. Some of the guess disappear and others are hurt, but by who. By the end of the book they are rescued and all is solved. It was nice to see Dorothy Martin back. Hope there are more forthcoming.
May 07, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery-england
Dorothy Martin and her husband, retired chief constable Alan Nesbitt, are invited to spend a Guy Fawkes day weekend at a remote country house. A violent storm isolates the house party,k and a skeleton is found under one of the many downed trees. Then three of the party disappear. Without electricity or any means of communication, the group must fend for themselves, but as the mystery deepens, Nesbitt tries to take charge and keep the remaining members of the group safe.
Mar 24, 2011 rated it did not like it
Shelves: mystery
It has been quite a while since I read the last volume of this series. The way I recall it, this series had a certain charm to it. However, this latest volume rubbed me thoroughly the wrong way. The dialogue seemed very stilted & the characters were over exaggerated. Also, it appeared that the author was conducting an exercise of comparing & contrasting British & American characters & culture. British-isms were liberally sprinkled throughout in a heavy handed fashion.
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ACPL Online Book ...: Dark and Stormy Night by Jeanne Dams 2 1 Oct 05, 2017 01:45PM  

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Jeanne M. Dams lives in South Bend, Indiana. The Body in the Transept, which introduced Dorothy Martin, won the Agatha Award for Best First Novel. Dams is also the author of Green Grow the Victims and other Hilda Johansson mysteries published by Walker & Company.

Other books in the series

Dorothy Martin (1 - 10 of 21 books)
  • The Body In The Transept (Dorothy Martin, #1)
  • Trouble In The Town Hall (Dorothy Martin, #2)
  • Holy Terror In The Hebrides (Dorothy Martin, #3)
  • Malice In Miniature (Dorothy Martin, #4)
  • The Victim In Victoria Station (Dorothy Martin, #5)
  • Killing Cassidy (Dorothy Martin, #6)
  • To Perish In Penzance (Dorothy Martin, #7)
  • Sins Out Of School (Dorothy Martin, #8)
  • Winter Of Discontent (Dorothy Martin, #9)
  • The Evil That Men Do (Dorothy Martin, #11)