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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Loved the live wickets
As usual, I got some good chuckles....love croquet, and now have a hankering to play X-treme croquet. The storyline actually rates 5 stars, but....and I continue to flog this pet peeve to death...who is doing the proofreading? It has to be a gaggle of first graders! On page 256, line 9, can anyone interpret this sentence?..."How big does do we need for one little...
Published on August 25, 2006 by Bobbrun

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars zany as usual, but not top notch
I read "No Nest for the Wicket" in an afternoon and enjoyed it. I didn't have any laugh-out-loud moments from it as I have in previous episodes. This one is a bit heavier on plotting and lighter on Meg's family than previous Meg Lanslow mysteries. To me, her family, their antics, and Meg's relationship with them are the stars of the series. Meg and Michael are there, but...
Published on July 6, 2007 by Amazon Customer


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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Loved the live wickets, August 25, 2006
This review is from: No Nest for the Wicket (Meg Langslow Mysteries) (Hardcover)
As usual, I got some good chuckles....love croquet, and now have a hankering to play X-treme croquet. The storyline actually rates 5 stars, but....and I continue to flog this pet peeve to death...who is doing the proofreading? It has to be a gaggle of first graders! On page 256, line 9, can anyone interpret this sentence?..."How big does do we need for one little duck?"

Most of the errors were just spelling, an extra letter here, not enough letters there, but, sentences like the one in quotes sure makes one slam on the brakes and release the cruise control.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very funny and enjoyable mystery, September 4, 2006
This review is from: No Nest for the Wicket (Meg Langslow Mysteries) (Hardcover)
Blacksmith Meg Langslow learns exactly how dangerous a game of eXtreme Croquet can get when she follows her roqueted ball into a bog--where she finds a dead woman. It turns out that the dead woman was a bit of a trouble-maker, as well as a former girlfriend of Meg's fiance, Michael. All of the croquet players deny knowing anything about her, but the truth gradually comes out. With the fate of what might become the country's largest outlet mall (in Meg's back yard, of all places) involved, the stakes are high. Could it be members of the historical society? Or perhaps the developer? Then again, surely it isn't Michael--despite ending the relationship on a negative note.

The local sheriff isn't much interested in Meg's help, but she can't stop herself. She talks with the locals (including the family working on restoring the farmhouse where she hopes, eventually to live and from which the workmen had a great view of the croquet game) and starts trying to narrow down the suspect list. Unfortunately, the list seems to keep growing.

Author Donna Andrews combines charming characters with an intriguing story in a truly enjoyable mystery. Meg might be a bit odd in her own right, but she's definitely the normal one in her family--and her family is at the croquet match in full force. Her doctor-father's not-so-secret wish to be a forensic scientist comes into play, as does her mother's constant planning, her cousin's herbal druidry (or is it dryadry), her brother's computer incompetence (you'd think that would be a problem considering he's President of a computer game company), all play important roles.

Between late-night sheep shearing, Spike-the-dog's bad habits, and the egg-laying scheming of Duck the duck, I found myself chuckling through this entertaining story. I'm happy to recommend NO NEST FOR THE WICKET--great title, too.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable, but not on Par with the Last Couple, September 16, 2006
By 
Mark Baker (Santa Clarita, CA United States) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: No Nest for the Wicket (Meg Langslow Mysteries) (Hardcover)
Meg's family is hosting an eXtreme croquet tournament near Meg's house, and Meg has gotten roped into playing. Not that she hates it, but the sport is a little wild for her tastes.

After Meg's ball gets roqueted into a gully, Meg finds a dead body. While the woman had obviously been hit by a croquet mallet, she wasn't playing in the tournament. In fact, Meg and the other contestants have no idea who she is.

It's Michael who makes the identification. The victim used to be a professor at the local college and had made quite a few enemies in town. What was she doing back in the area? And who knew about it and wanted to kill her?

This series has become a favorite because of the great plots and the laugh out loud moments. Unfortunately, this entry doesn't live up to the last couple. Mainly, it was because the book wasn't as funny as it could have been. Much of the humor has been done before and better in the earlier books. Not that this book isn't enjoyable. I still found myself laughing and smiling, just not as much as previously.

Fortunately, the plot is very engaging. There are several twists and plenty of red herrings before the final solution is revealed. I did feel the climax was a bit abrupt, but it was logical.

The returning characters are their usual charming selves. It's always a pleasure to spend time with Meg and her family even if murder is the result. The new characters are interesting as well. They could have used a little more development, but I could easily keep everyone straight.

While not up to the usual standards for this series, this is still a book well worth reading. It's a fast moving mystery that will keep you entertained from start to finish.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars More Lighthearted Fun, September 20, 2006
By 
George Buttner "Agent0042" (Dayton, Ohio United States) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: No Nest for the Wicket (Meg Langslow Mysteries) (Hardcover)
I had only just recently discovered the Donna Andrews books and so I was pleased to find that a new one had come out. I'd already read two --- "Crouching Buzzard, Leaping Loon" and "We'll Always Have Parrots," so "No Nest for the Wicket" makes number three.

Overall, "No Nest for the Wicket" was reasonably good fun. I'm not sure it quite made it up to some of the comic hilarity in "Loon," but I found it overall more enjoyable than "Parrots." In ths book, Meg Langslow is involved with a game called "eXtreme croquet." This rougher version of the leisurely pastime involves "extreme conditions ... plenty of hills, trees, rocks, quicksand, thornbushes, poison ivy..." But soon murder is added to the mix when Meg lands in some thorns and pointy rocks and finds a dead body.

Local politics, historical trickery and a duck with the not-so-creative name of "Duck" all play into the comic mischief that ensues in Andrews' newest offering. And the story of Meg and her fiancé, Mike, continues. If you've enjoyed Donna Andrews stories before, then this story should provide further entertainment. With three down, I plan to take a look at "Murder with Peacocks" and see how this series got started.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining, witty, well-plotted - one of best in the series, January 19, 2008
By 
M. C. Crammer (Lawrenceville, GA USA) - See all my reviews
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I generally enjoy this series, and when I see that the author has a new book out, I always get it. I have sometimes been disappointed because it's not as good as I expected, but that's not the case with this book -- it was one of the better in the series, all of which have a bird reference in the title.

In this case, the nest belongs to a duck -- named Duck. You can imagine what happens when someone calls her... That gives you an idea of the humor in the book. But even funnier is the game that is played throughout the book -- eXtreme croquet! I guess there really is such a game, and it sounds fun -- croquet played on rough terrain rather than the usual flat lawn. The series' "detective," Meg Laslow, lives on a Virginia farm with her fiance Michael. They're renovating an old farmhouse, and since they live in the country, they're hosting an eXtreme croquet tournament.

Almost immediately, Meg stumbles across a body -- an unknown woman who has apparently been murdered with a croquet mallet. Because the murder was on land used for the croquet tournament, it seems likely that someone in the tournament or working on the house committed the murder. Although the sheriff is investigating, Meg is interested in discovering which of the people at her place for the weekend is the killer.

Staying with Meg and Michael are Meg's colorful parents and brother and other assorted family members (where are all these people sleeping? not clear), who add to the humor. Also staying with Meg and Michael is Spike (actually belongs to Michael's mother), a tiny little dog who has been through umpteen dog trainers and still bites unwary people. He also adds to the humor.

I really didn't guess "who dun it," which is to the author's credit, as I read so many mysteries that I often do. Only toward the last 75 pages did I add the person to my "possible killer" list.

If you haven't read any in the series, if you like witty, cozy mysteries, you're likely to enjoy this one. If you are already a fan, you won't be disappointed.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars I so enjoyed this book!, August 12, 2006
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This review is from: No Nest for the Wicket (Meg Langslow Mysteries) (Hardcover)
Croquet as a sport is not dead! It is, in the form of eXtreme Croquet, the current rage in Caerphilly where blacksmith extraordinaire, Meg Langslow's, property (under renovation) is home base for the competing teams.

Croquet is not usually thought of as a game to die for or over, but in Caerphilly, anything is possible. Meg's croquet ball is sent down a cliff where she finds a dead woman whom no one seems to know, but many have had contact with in the past, including her own finance.

As Meg investigates the mysterious woman's death, she must negotiate the cluttered terrain of her own home. Present are crazy family members, a team of students that are better known as the Mountain Morris Mallet Men, local society mavens, workmen, runaway sheep, a duck looking to be a mother, and some nasty poison ivy. With all the distraction, Meg must be able to focus if she is to solve the murder and save her homestead from the invasion of the Mega Mall.

Donna Andrew's novel, No Nest for the Wicket has unique characters and never-ending activity. Yet, for the entire frenetic goings on, it doesn't feel frenetic. It is a fun-filled romp through the land of murder. Her characters are delightful because they are so flawed and are reminiscent of people we all know. Andrews's imagination should be studied! The results are a satisfying read that will make you laugh.

Armchair Interviews says: If you want a fast, fun read where you're entertained, not challenged to think, Andrew's No Nest for the Wicket is the ticket. If murder can result in a feel-good experience, this is it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Amusing, fun, September 19, 2006
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This review is from: No Nest for the Wicket (Meg Langslow Mysteries) (Hardcover)
No Nest for the Wicket was another Meg Langslow story that was enjoyable to read, although possibly not the best one. However, the proofreading was some of the worst I've ever found. Someone should be checking these a little closer.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fun, but not the best in the series, June 26, 2007
Meg Langslow and her family, as always, are a treat to hang out with. The new obsession eXtreme croquet is a wonderful new obession for her family to throw themselves into and for Spike to terrorize.

I love the extended family of the heroine and the ongoing craziness of the Langslow clan. I just want to know where I can buy a real version of "Lawyers from Hell" -- being an attorney I know just how much of a market there is for this computer game!

Still, the plot in "No Nest for the Wicket" felt a bit forced and much of the humorous bits were variations on scenes/bits from previous books.

This is a good series, but I think Donna Andrews can do better. This is the perfect book to while away a summer afternoon reading on the porch while you sip lemonade. Enjoy!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars What a Wicket World, March 12, 2012
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I have read several of this author's books and I do not think this was one of her better ones. Seemed to go on and on and was tiring. Also am a bit tired of all the family interludes. Keep to the murder mystery and get rid of the unnecessary family details. We know her Dad is a doctor and is looking for a dead body to investigate and push the issue. No, did not like this one and now know her theme for each story.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A very well written cozy., July 29, 2014
Donna Andrews has created what is one of my favorite `cozy' mystery series. The main character Meg Langslow is a Blacksmith. Let me correct that last sentence somewhat. The main character in these books is the characters Ms. Andrews creates to inhabit her stories. Yes, Meg hold center stage but others in the book play off of here in wonderful, humorous and quirky ways...actually, Meg plays off of them also. Megs family alone are enough to keep you grinning and snickering from cover to cover.

In this particular offering Meg and her husband are hosting a game of eXtreme Croquet on their small farm place. This is a team sport and actually the participants are more hazardous than the actually ground they are playing on. As chance would have it Meg's ball is whacked soundly into a dank gully, Meg falls and finds herself staring into the face of a young lady (An apparent stranger) who has been murdered...yup, whacked in the back of the head with a croquet mallet. As with all the books in this series the body count is always quite low but the one dead body here is most certainly enough.

Mix this croquet match with the fact that Meg and her husband are still attempting to restore their old farm house, manage Megs family, strangers and strange neighbors along with a rotten developer, overly competitive college students and an assortment of VIPs from the village and you get a delightful mess that Meg must wade through to solve the murder.

The author of this book and the others in this series is actually quite skillful as to her craft. We have instance after instance of word play, ridiculous situations which actually make sense as they play out. Add to this the author's ability to actually make some pretty eccentric characters seem real; characters you actually care about, and a knack for twisty plots and you have yourself a very nice and enjoyable read. I actually have friends who pointedly look down their noses at me for enjoying a good cozy mystery such as this. I actually pity them because they are missing out on some very nice writing and a very nice reading experience.

Overall a good fun read.

This was a library find.

Don Blankenship
The Ozarks
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No Nest for the Wicket (Meg Langslow Mysteries)
No Nest for the Wicket (Meg Langslow Mysteries) by Donna Andrews (Hardcover - August 8, 2006)
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