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Death In A White Tie Mass Market Paperback – October 15, 1997


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Editorial Reviews

Review

'The brilliant Ngaio Marsh ranks with Agatha Christie and Dorothy Sayers' Times Literary Supplement 'Ngaio Marsh's Death in a White Tie is the best detective story I have ever read...' Dashiell Hammett '[This book has] a distinction that puts the author in the front rank of crime story writers' Times Literary Supplement 'A brilliant, vivacious teller of detective novels.' News Chronicle 'The finest writer in the English language of the pure, classical puzzle whodunnit. Among the crime queens, Ngaio Marsh stands out as an Empress.' The Sun --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

From her first book in 1934 to her final volume just before her death in 1982, Ngaio Marsh's work has remained legendary, and is often compared to that of Agatha Christie and Dorothy L. Sayers. During her celebrated fifty-year career, Marsh was made a Grand Master by the Mystery Writers of America, was named Dame Commander, Order of the British Empire, won numerous prestigious awards, and penned 32 mystery novels.

Now St. Martin's Dead Letter Mysteries is thrilled to make all of Marsh's novels available again for old fans to relish and new ones to discover. So sit back, draw the curtains, lock the doors, and put yourself in the hands of Grande Dame of detective novels...
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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Paperbacks (October 15, 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312963610
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312963613
  • Product Dimensions: 6.8 x 4.2 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.1 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,995,248 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

As usual, Marsh places her clues very fairly but subtly.
Christina P. Branson
The book also feels unnecessarily long, padded out with a few too many characters and conversations.
Hatbox Dragon
If you like your crime novels in the classic mould then try this Ngaio Marsh.
Damaskcat

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Gary F. Taylor HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on February 3, 2002
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Although not in the same league with BLACK AS HE'S PAINTED or DEAD WATER, Ngaio Marsh's DEATH IN A WHITE TIE is a highly satisfying novel that meets the expectations readers have of this particular author: it is literate, witty, peopled with fully rounded characters, and set against an interesting backdrop--in this case the London debutant season.
In this particular novel, Inspector Allen is called upon to investigate rumors of a blackmailer at work in London's high society, and he accordingly recruits Lord "Bunchy," a well known and decidedly fatherly figure. Bunchy is quick to identify the blackmailer--but just as the blackmail plot seems about to unravel murder steps in, and Allen must not only uncover the blackmailer but a killer as well.
As is often the case in a Marsh novel, some readers will spot the killer long before the book's finish--but as typical of Marsh, getting there is most of the fun. A number of favorites return in this novel, including painter Agatha Troy, previously introduced in ARTISTS IN CRIME, and Allen's charming mother; the novel also includes a number of romantic subplots that Marsh handles with considerable effectiveness. Neither newcomers nor old fans will be disappointed; recommended.
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 6, 1998
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This is perhaps Ngaio Marsh's best example of an upper-crust English murder mystery. The characters are so finely drawn that it makes you wish they would show up in her other novels. Rory Alleyn is at his youthful best, with a convincing amount of restrained-British angst just to make him more loveable. This is a compelling whodunit, with more than enough great writing and humour along the way to make it look great as a novel, too.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Midwest Book Review on March 13, 2002
Format: Audio CD
To celebrate the Winter Solstice, the swordsmen of South Mardian intricately weave their blades in an ancient ritual dance. When one of their number is found decapitated, this hallowed fertility rite is corrupted into a pageant of death. Inspector Roderick Alleyn is called upon to solve the murder and in doing so finds himself plunged into a morass of mysteries, secrets and sins of this eccentric group, along with a surly blacksmith, a domineering dowager, and a not-so-simple village idiot. Blackstone Audiobooks is a premier audiobook publisher with a justifiable reputation of technically flawless recordings. Their complete and unabridged, ten hour, CD edition of master mystery writer Nagaio Marsh's Death Of A Fool is dramatically narrated by Nadia May. A very highly recommended, "theater of the mind" listening experience for mystery buffs in general, and Nagaio Marsh fans in particular, Death Of A Fool is also available in an unabridged audio cassette format ...
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Christina P. Branson on November 30, 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Chief Detective-Inspector Alleyn enlists the assistance of his well connected society friend Lord Robert 'Bunchy' Gospell to find out who is blackmailing several wealthy ladies. The charming Bunchy makes several interesting discoveries while making the rounds of "the London season," but is quite unfortunately murdered before he can and Alleyn can piece together the whole story.
As usual, Marsh places her clues very fairly but subtly. The backdrop of the debutante parties gives an interesting behind the scenes glimpse of 1930s London society, and if you like your mysteries peopled with lots of peers, this book is for you.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Neal J. Pollock VINE VOICE on June 14, 2008
Format: Hardcover
This work has Marsh's usual cast of characters: Alleyn, Fox, Bailey, Thompson, & Curtis. The mystery is rather intricate. Some of it is discernible IMHO, but some is not. The characters are interesting but some seem like charicatures. William Andersen's dialect was impossible to understand; many other characters (as usual in Marsh books) use many British idioms not readily understood in the US. But, these are annoyances only. "The Play's the Thing." The 5 Sword Dance, a continuation of an ancient pagan ritual, is described in great detail. Interestingly, I was reading the entry on Dancing in the encyclopedia Man, Myth & Magic, An Illustrated Encyclopedia of the Supernatural 24 Volume Complete Set (or Man, Myth and Magic: An Illustrated Encyclopedia of the Supernatural (24-Vol. Set)) at the time! Synchronicity--per C. Jung (see The Tao of Psychology: Synchronicity and Self). There's a lot of psychology in Alleyn's solution to the case. What amazes me the most though is how people (assuming Marsh's characterizations are realistic) can be so foolish in dealing with a murder investigation. But, "it takes all kinds..." It's a pretty good mystery, I liked the ritual aspects, but not her best IMHO. This novel is included in: FIVE COMPLETE NOVELS SCALES OF JUSTICE DEATH OF A FOOL TIED UP IN TINSEL GRAVE MISTAKE PHOTO FINISH
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful By MK Writer on August 30, 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
It's time for the men of the Andersen clan to re-enact the annual Dance of the Five Swords. Don't let the fact that they unite every year for this tradition fool you into thinking that this is a peaceful family - All of the Andersen men chafe under the rule of their father/grandfather, William Andersen (AKA "The Guiser") who has held a tight fist over the family smithy and cash, not to mention every single member of his family, especially Ernie the "slow" one. There are also others in the village who manage to antagonize each other. Still, the last thing anyone expects is for one of the dancers to die in a gruesome manner, mid-dance. An excellent tale - it blends Marsh's gifts for mystery, character and observation.
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