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The Leavenworth Case
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The Leavenworth Case > The Leavenworth Case, Week 1, Book I - The Problem

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message 1: by ☯Emily , The First (new) - rated it 4 stars

☯Emily  Ginder | 1132 comments Mod
This is where we discussed the first section of the book called The Problem. It includes chapters 1-13.


message 2: by ☯Emily , The First (new) - rated it 4 stars

☯Emily  Ginder | 1132 comments Mod
My Penguin edition has an introduction by Michael Sims that shows Ms. Green's place in the development of the detective novel and her influence on many authors including Agatha Christie. It is an excellent article and doesn't contain any spoilers!


message 3: by Alexa (new)

Alexa (AlexaNC) | 435 comments My library doesn't have this. But they do have two other novels by her That Affair Next Door and Lost Man's Lane, so I'm contemplating reading that alongside/instead of this.


message 4: by Kim (new) - rated it 4 stars

Kim (crossreactivity) Looking forward to the discussion.


message 5: by ☯Emily , The First (new) - rated it 4 stars

☯Emily  Ginder | 1132 comments Mod
I love how the reader is instantly plunged into the affair without any long buildup or description. That resembles how most people become involved in a murder case.


Anastasia Kinderman | 654 comments Mod
I have the Penguin edition with that intro as well, Emily.


message 7: by Ginny (new)

Ginny (burmisgal) | 190 comments Very engaging so far. Do you think the Shakespeare quotes at the beginning of each chapter are giving us clues?


message 8: by ☯Emily , The First (new) - rated it 4 stars

☯Emily  Ginder | 1132 comments Mod
Ginny wrote: "Very engaging so far. Do you think the Shakespeare quotes at the beginning of each chapter are giving us clues?"

They haven't helped me!


message 9: by ☯Emily , The First (new) - rated it 4 stars

☯Emily  Ginder | 1132 comments Mod
I have finished the first book. I am seldom right about who did it, but this is my guess based on clues already given: (view spoiler)


message 10: by ☯Emily , The First (new) - rated it 4 stars

☯Emily  Ginder | 1132 comments Mod
Do you think that Everett Raymond is a reliable narrator? He reminds me of Hastings, Poirot's sidekick in the early Christie novels. Hastings always misinterpreted the clues.


message 11: by ☯Emily , The First (new) - rated it 4 stars

☯Emily  Ginder | 1132 comments Mod
Eleanore reminds me of Rachel Verinder in The Moonstone. Rachel (view spoiler)


message 12: by ☯Emily , The First (last edited Dec 04, 2015 02:29PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

☯Emily  Ginder | 1132 comments Mod
Do you think the "love" Everett has for Eleanore is realistic? Why does he fall in love with her? Is it her looks? Mary is better looking. Is it because she is a damsel in distressed? Conversely, what does she see in him? It doesn't seem very realistic to me.


message 13: by Kim (new) - rated it 4 stars

Kim (crossreactivity) ☯Emily wrote: "Do you think the "love" Everett has for Eleanore is realistic? Why does he fall in love with her? Is it her looks? Mary is better looking. Is it because she is a damsel in distressed? Conversely, what does she see in him? It doesn't seem very realistic to me."

I think he admires her honor and virtue (very Victorian, right?). I'm not sure what she sees in him, unless it's his willingness to believe in her despite the evidence piling up against her.


message 14: by Kim (last edited Dec 04, 2015 08:31PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Kim (crossreactivity) ☯Emily wrote: "Do you think that Everett Raymond is a reliable narrator? He reminds me of Hastings, Poirot's sidekick in the early Christie novels. Hastings always misinterpreted the clues."

I think this is exactly right about Raymond. He's a foil for Gryce and he has the same susceptibility to women and instinctive distrust of certain types of men (like Harwell) that Arthur Hastings would have.


message 15: by Ginny (new)

Ginny (burmisgal) | 190 comments Mr. Raymond's character and professional role seem a bit vague to me. He has been summoned to provide legal counsel to Mary and Eleanor, has he not? The senior partners continue to be unavailable, apparently even for consultation. Why was he not present for the reading of the will? He should be advising Eleanor as a lawyer to a client likely to be charged with murder, rather than as a lover afraid she is guilty. There must be estate details to sort out. Is there another law firm doing this?


message 16: by ☯Emily , The First (new) - rated it 4 stars

☯Emily  Ginder | 1132 comments Mod
I wondered about that too. He certainly isn't giving any legal issues to either cousin. It is possible that the will and probate is handled by a different kind of attorney.


message 17: by Sara (new) - rated it 3 stars

Sara (phantomswife) As my practice in reading early detective novels is to always discount the obvious, I will not put my money on Mary. I am curious about the unidentified gentleman outside the house and the calling card that came, along with a gentleman caller, the night of the murder. These two women have a deep-seated quarrel with one another, and what is more likely to be at the heart of that than a man? I am also anxious to understand why Eleanor received none of her uncle's estate, despite the fact that he was obviously closer to her and she grieves him much more deeply than Mary.

Every Sherlock needs a Watson to explain his mental accumen to. I think Raymond will serve that purpose for Gryce...an avenue to reveal what Gryce comes to know as the investigation proceeds.

Impossible not to compare the coroner's inquest with modern day investigations. People coming and going at the murder scene, hearsay evidence, the lack of containment regarding evidence. Those guys at CSI would be purple watching this investigation go down.


message 18: by ☯Emily , The First (new) - rated it 4 stars

☯Emily  Ginder | 1132 comments Mod
Impossible not to compare the coroner's inquest with modern day investigations. People coming and going at the murder scene, hearsay evidence, the lack of containment regarding evidence. Those guys at CSI would be purple watching this investigation go down.

Hilarious comment.


message 19: by Anastasia Kinderman, The Only (last edited Dec 09, 2015 02:45PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Anastasia Kinderman | 654 comments Mod
Just finished the first part and am I the only one feeling cross with Eleanore? She's such a sap, she refuses to help the police with their investigation, and then she is all shocked and her 'woman's honor' hurt because they suspect her.
Guess what? When you keep things from the police YOU BECOME A SUSPECT!!!! Her naivety just really surprises me, she may be beautiful but I'm not convinced there's much rolling around in her head.

(view spoiler)


message 20: by Kim (new) - rated it 4 stars

Kim (crossreactivity) Anastasia wrote: "Just finished the first part and am I the only one feeling cross with Eleanore?"

I was impatient with her too. But I think it's a very Victorian attitude. Eleanore believes that her honor and reputation should keep her from suspicion... and Raymond admires her for it!


message 21: by Sara (new) - rated it 3 stars

Sara (phantomswife) ♪ Kim wrote: "Anastasia wrote: "Just finished the first part and am I the only one feeling cross with Eleanore?"

I was impatient with her too. But I think it's a very Victorian attitude. Eleanore believes that ..."


I think she is also just trying to protect her cousin and, like most innocent people, she thinks there can be no proof against her for a crime she didn't commit.


message 22: by Anastasia Kinderman, The Only (new) - rated it 5 stars

Anastasia Kinderman | 654 comments Mod
Sara wrote: "♪ Kim wrote: "Anastasia wrote: "Just finished the first part and am I the only one feeling cross with Eleanore?"

I was impatient with her too. But I think it's a very Victorian attitude. Eleanore ..."


That's true. However, like I said, when you keep things from the police it makes you look suspicious even when you're innocent.


message 23: by ☯Emily , The First (new) - rated it 4 stars

☯Emily  Ginder | 1132 comments Mod
♪ Kim wrote: "Anastasia wrote: "Just finished the first part and am I the only one feeling cross with Eleanore?"

I was impatient with her too. But I think it's a very Victorian attitude. Eleanore believes that ..."


It is a very Victorian attitude. If you read The Moonstone, you will find the same plot line. Wilkie Collins was an influence on Green.


message 24: by Sara (new) - rated it 3 stars

Sara (phantomswife) ☯Emily wrote: "It is a very Victorian attitude. If you read The Moonstone, you will find the same plot line. Wilkie Collins was an influence on Green."

His influence is very evident and her style is much the same. I am enjoying her writing just as I do his.


Carolien (carolien_s) | 100 comments I've just started the book and I am finding the process to set out the evidence to the reader quite an interesting device. Starting with the coroner's enquiry means that the reader has as little context with regards to the family affairs as any of he jury. I am enjoying her writing style.

Both women are quite irritating in their very Victorian attitudes.


message 26: by Kim (new) - rated it 4 stars

Kim (crossreactivity) Carolien wrote: "Both women are quite irritating in their very Victorian attitudes."

Aren't they, though? I just wanted to shake them.


message 27: by Anastasia Kinderman, The Only (new) - rated it 5 stars

Anastasia Kinderman | 654 comments Mod
Does anyone know if they actually did coroner's inquiries back then or is this just a plot device?


message 28: by ☯Emily , The First (new) - rated it 4 stars

☯Emily  Ginder | 1132 comments Mod
I suspect that this was the way the coroner's inquiries were conducted back then. The author had her manuscript reviewed by attorneys before it was published, so if the inquiry was way out of line, she would have been told.


message 29: by Anastasia Kinderman, The Only (new) - rated it 5 stars

Anastasia Kinderman | 654 comments Mod
☯Emily wrote: "I suspect that this was the way the coroner's inquiries were conducted back then. The author had her manuscript reviewed by attorneys before it was published, so if the inquiry was way out of line,..."

Good point, I forgot about that.


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