Gaele's Reviews > Murder in an English Village

Murder in an English Village by Jessica Ellicott
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AudioBook Review:
Stars: Overall 4 Narration 4 Story 4

Edwina Davenport couldn’t be more different from her school-friend, American adventuress Beryl Helliwell, but the proper Englishwoman Edwina needs both a friendship and the money that Beryl provides. Edwina had finally decided to advertise for a lodger, perfect timing for Beryl who wants a quieter pace, removed from her ‘always on show’ life. Seeing the advert, Beryl drives to Walmsley Parva, and reenters Edwina’s life with a bang, literally. But, claiming to want a quieter life, and actually achieving that goal, along with a fierce need to ‘protect’ her friend, Beryl drops hints that the two actually are working for His Majesty’s Service, looking into some shady happenings in the village, the story takes a series of twists that she never could have imagined.

Such a clever set-up with laugh out loud moments from events and particularly the interactions and differences in style between Edwina and Beryl, they are soon faced with an attack on Edwina and their housemaid’s murder. Perhaps Beryl wasn’t too far off the mark when she suggested that all was not as it seemed in the little village. More considered and cautious Edwina contrasts nicely with Beryl’s more exuberant ‘grab an idea and go’ approach, which leads to several suspects of the moment, before the culprit and motive are found. Secondary characters, drawn in by Beryl’s almost childlike friendliness (she’s like a puppy where Edwina is more feline in her reserve) bring laugh out loud moments when Edwina’s sense of propriety clash with the very real and unfussy Simpkins, the slightly condescending Constable Gibbs and the other residents add layers of interest and a sense of village to the story. Fast-paced, intriguing and engaging, this is a lovely start to a new series with a touch of the times and sense of what was to add interest.

Narration for this story is provided by Barbara Rosenblat, who epitomizes the reserve and proper Edwina easily, with a touch more youthful exuberance to Beryl that helps to bring their contrasting personalities and styles to the forefront. Secondary characters are presented with subtle changes in enunciation and pace, making them distinct in impressions as the visual imagery catches up to the listener: even without a ‘biographic’ detail of characters, one can hear the difference in social levels and education instantly. A lovely listen that kept the story moving forward without becoming confusing or rushing through important elements necessary to the solution.

I received an AudioBook copy of the title from Recorded Books for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.

Review first appeared at I am, Indeed
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Reading Progress

Started Reading
May 25, 2018 – Shelved
May 25, 2018 – Shelved as: 2018-challenges
May 25, 2018 – Shelved as: audio-book
May 25, 2018 – Shelved as: abrc
May 25, 2018 – Shelved as: bsrc
May 25, 2018 – Shelved as: cozy-mystery
May 25, 2018 – Shelved as: cruisin-through-the-cozies
May 25, 2018 – Shelved as: kensington
May 25, 2018 – Shelved as: historic
May 25, 2018 – Shelved as: recorded-books
May 25, 2018 – Shelved as: reviewed
May 25, 2018 – Shelved as: debut-author-reading-challenge
May 25, 2018 – Finished Reading

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