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Not a Creature was Stirring Mass Market Paperback – November 1, 1990

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Product Details

  • Series: Gregor Demarkian (Book 1)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Crimeline; Reissue edition (November 1, 1990)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0553287923
  • ISBN-13: 978-0553287929
  • Product Dimensions: 6.9 x 4.1 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (29 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #825,750 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Under the Hadden pseudonym, Orania Papazoglou ( Sweet Savage Death ) introduces Gregor Demarkian, a retired FBI agent drawn into private sleuthing. Gregor has never met wealthy eccentric Robert Hannaford but has ample incentive (an offer of $100,000 for Gregor's church) to join Christmas Eve dinner at the Hannaford mansion. Show up, eat and take the money--that's it, says Robert. But when Gregor arrives, he finds Hannaford's corpse in the study. Robert had regarded his children as "dangerous idiots," but which one might be dangerous enough to commit murder: Myra and Bobby, who are picking up spare cash through insider trading at Hannaford Financial; Teddy, about to be fired from his college teaching post for plagiarism and sexual harassment; this is correct/pk Bennis, the fantasy writer; Chris, who has to pay off a gambling debt of $75,000; Anne Marie, who has run the family house and cared for her chronically ill mother; or actress Emma, baby of the family, said to have already made an attempt on her father's life? This is a promising first volume in a series featuring Demarkian.
Copyright 1990 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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I figure I have at least 9 or 10 months of good reading ahead.
C. Myres
I like Gregor Demarkian and look forward to reading about him and his Cavanaugh Street friends in future books.
Lynn T.
Because this is the first in the series, it is a must read for fans.
Carol Mello

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Michele L. Worley on October 20, 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
After losing his wife Elizabeth to cancer, Gregor has taken early retirement from the FBI, and has returned to his old neighbourhood in Philadelphia in time for Christmas. Just as he's adapting to the urban renewal that has revamped Cavanaugh Street, he finds that his old reputation won't leave him alone...
Father Tibor, Cavanaugh Street's Armenian Orthodox parish priest, has been approached by Robert Hannaford, with a proposition for Gregor. If Gregor will attend a family dinner at Engine House, Hannaford's mansion on the Main Line, Hannaford will make a generous donation to Father Tibor's church. Why would an old-money, elderly financier want an expert on poisons and serial murder to attend a quiet Christmas dinner with his wife and grown children?
Gregor's boredom with his retirement is cured, as he reaches Engine House to find the police investigating Hannaford's murder.
This is the first Demarkian Holiday Mystery (Christmas) and introduces Bennis Hannaford (one of Robert's daughters) and her dysfunctional family. The cast of characters of Cavanaugh Street introduced here includes Father Tibor (who escaped from the Soviet Union in the bad old days of the 1980s) and Donna Moradanyan. Donna's boyfriend, Peter, has disappeared since Donna became pregnant, so Gregor is enlisted to find Peter for her as the Hannaford case unfolds.
There are a number of interesting subplots, not necessarily related to the murder; at least one for each of Hannaford's seven children. Anne Marie, the only one of the seven still living at Engine House, is falling apart while taking care of their mother, who is dying of multiple schlerosis.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By S Riaz TOP 500 REVIEWER on March 21, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
I am absolutely delighted to see that Jane Haddam has finally arrived on kindle! This novel, "Not a Creature was Stirring", is the very first in her long-running Gregor Demarkian series, which I read when first published in 1990 and it remains one of my favourites. When we meet Gregor Demarkian he is a fifty five year old man, retired after twenty years at the FBI. His beloved wife, Elizabeth, is dead - Demarkian had retired mainly to care for her - and now he is a man without purpose. He has returned to his childhood Armenian ethnic neighbourhood in Philadelphia and this place, Cavanaugh Street, and his neighbours are all very important to Demarkian's character and the books. In many ways, this novel really sets the scene for a series which becomes (like all good series) filled with characters who seem like old friends.

Of course, this first novel also introduces the important character of Bennis Hannaford, whose family are wealthy, influential and extremely dysfunctional. When Robert Hannaford, father of Bennis and her six siblings, contacts Father Tibor (an eccentric Armenian priest) and asks him to arrange for Gregor Demarkian to attend a dinner at his family home, events are set in motion which end in murder. When Demarkian is asked to act as a consultant in the case, he finds a reason to go on living.

Sadly, not all the books in this series are currently on kindle, although I hope that they will eventually appear. The series in order is as follows:

Gregor Demarkian
1. Not a Creature Was Stirring (1990)
2. Precious Blood (1991)
3. Act of Darkness (1991)
4. Quoth the Raven (1991)
5. A Great Day for the Deadly (1992)
6. A Feast of Murder (1992)
7. A Stillness in Bethlehem (1992)
8. Murder Superior (1993)
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer VINE VOICE on April 7, 2008
Format: Hardcover
The first of the Gregor Demarkian stories, and one of the better ones. I don't know whether to put it in the first or second tier because it reads a little slowly for my taste. The puzzle is sound although the actual villian was one of my prime suspects by the end. Still, it's one of Haddam's stronger mysteries. If, like me, you find it promising but not perfect, please try Precious Blood or A Stillness in Bethlehem next.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By D. R. Meredith on July 28, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Not a Creature Was StirringThe introductory volume of Jane Haddam's Gregor Demarkian series succeeds admirabley in the goals all first books in a series must do. She introduces Gregor Demarkian, her Armenian-American detective,by skillfully adding details about his background, his relationships with Father Tibor and others who live in the ethnic Armenian neighborhood, and revealing certain of his personal beliefs, all without turning the information into an indigestible lump of facts the reader is supposed to swallow all at once. In other words, Gregor and Father Tibor and the wonderful Bennis expose their flaws and strengths slowly over the course of the story, and over the course of the series. That's the way it ought to be done.

The time is the Christmas holiday (Haddam uses various holidays as a plot device in her early books)and the place is Cavanaugh Street in Philadelphia, and the Hannaford mansion in what is called the Main Line, home to old amd very plentiful money. Gregor, a retired FBI profiler and hunter of serial killers, is asked to Christmas Eve dinner by patriarch Robert Hannaford. Gregor is very suspicous of the invitation, but he is bored and, besides, Hannaford has promised Father Tibor's church $100,000 if Gregor accepts. Gregor arrives at the Hannaford estate in time to find himself temporarily a suspect in Robert Hannaford's murder, along with the seven Hannaford children, several of whom are unsavory characters to say the least.

Finally dismissed as a suspect, Gregor joins the investagation as an independent consultant.
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