Reading 1001 discussion

Archives > 10. Post your reviews. Does the book belong on the list?

Comments Showing 1-7 of 7 (7 new)    post a comment »
dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by Jen (new)

Jen | 1608 comments Mod
10. Post your reviews here. Does this book deserve to be on the 1001 list? Why or why not?

message 2: by Jen (new)

Jen | 1608 comments Mod
Here was my review from when I read it a while ago.

3.5 stars
The Nine Tailors is a mystery/detective novel featuring Lord Peter Wimsley. The plot centers on the death of a mystery man who is found buried inside a plot that belongs to another family. There are multiple parts to the mystery including identifying the deceased, a jewel theft, uncovering the murderer, and figuring out the method. The title is taken from old church tradition in small villages of announcing death by church bells (number and types of tones indicating the details, man vs. woman, child, age, etc). Tailors = bell peals, thus 9 tailors indicates death of a man.

I liked this book. It was entertaining and I enjoyed the description of the village and the villagers. There is a lot of detail and prose about bell-ringing and I felt it was much slower moving than other types of detective novels. I prefer Sherlock Holmes who seems to take a much more active role in the solving of the mystery. Lord Wimsley seemed fairly passive although ultimately he solves all parts of the mystery. Overall an entertaining read and I liked the various elements of the mystery. It was interesting to me that the location was so important in this book, almost a character in itself, this book was as much about describing the village and its surroundings as it was about solving a mystery

message 3: by Kristel (new)

Kristel (kristelh) | 4207 comments Mod
Synopsis: This is a Lord Peter Wimsey mystery that takes place in the fens and involves bell changing (ringing) and has nothing to do with tailors.

I’ve read three Lord Peter Wimsey mysteries now and this is my favorite. I give in 4 stars for enjoyment but this is not a favorite for many and some feel the story is too slow. The details of the bells is a little complicated and probably results in people losing interest.

What I liked: I liked learning about the bells. I liked that the author seemed very knowledgeable about the subject of bell ringing. The story is set in the time period between the wars and mentions the influenza outbreak that did kill a lot of people. It touches on an environmental topic of what happens when man decides to change the course of nature. (draining the fen). The bells were used to announce a death. In these small communities people would know by the telling; thus the name “teller Paul” Paul being the largest (tenor) dedicated to St. Paul, and tailor being the dialect for teller.

The mystery and death is original. I am sure that is the reason that this was included in the 1001 books. It did win the Rusty Dagger award for best crime novel of the 1930s, British Crime Writers Association, 1999.
4 stars
I also sometimes like a book because I like details about the author. Dorothy Sayer was the daughter of a Rector and grew up on the Fens at Blutisham. She was famous for being a playwright, writing Christian essay and she is mostly known for her status as one of the women mystery writers of the Golden Age. She started to translate Dante’s Divine Comedy and she considered it her best work but died before completion.

message 4: by Diane (new)

Diane  | 2051 comments Rating: 4 Stars
Read: August 2016

I really enjoyed this mystery. This is the second book I have read by her (the first being Murder Must Advertise). In much the way she educated the readers of Murder Must Advertise about the advertising industry, Sayers educated the readers of this book about bell ringing. She was definitely detail oriented. I enjoyed the opportunity to learn something new. The resolution to the mystery was very creative and innovative at that time. I think it is worthy of its place on the list.

message 5: by Book (new)

Book Wormy | 2064 comments Mod
4 stars from me.

I enjoyed this cosy murder mystery especially all the details about campanology, the history of the church and village and the way the bells influenced and informed village life.

message 6: by Pip (new)

Pip | 1448 comments 4 stars

Dorothy Sayers researches brilliantly and then weaves her knowledge lightly into the story. In this book her knowledge of bell ringing, fen drainage and the Anglican litany are vital plot elements. The murder mystery is complicated, the characters believable and Lord Peter Wimsey is a character with a light touch on proceedings. It is a enjoyable and satisfying read.

message 7: by Patrick (new)

Patrick Robitaille | 975 comments The Nine Tailors (Dorothy Sayers) *** 1/2

When I saw the title of this novel, I was expecting (and maybe dreading a little) a mystery focusing on mercers and fashion designers. I was so wrong. The Nine Tailors delves into campanology, the art and science of bell-ringing; it refers to the peals rung on funerals and prefaces well a murder mystery. As my second Sayers/Lord Wimsey, this was much better than Murder Must Advertise. The characters, set in Fen country, were a lot more picturesque and interesting than the copywriters of MMA. The plot and mystery were more intricate, less predictable. And the details on campanology, even though quite obscure, provide a very clever theme around which the plot is woven.

back to top