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The Death of Corinne: A Country House Crime Hardcover – Bargain Price, July 20, 2007


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Carroll & Graf (July 20, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0786719729
  • ASIN: B005ZOJFLQ
  • Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 5.7 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,079,307 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"This intricate and inventive mystery is embellished by very witty dialogue and a cast of gloriously eccentric characters." -- Francis Wyndham --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

R.T. Raichev is a writer and researcher. He grew up in Bulgaria and wrote his university dissertation on English crime fiction. He lives in London.

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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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See all 8 customer reviews
I look forward to his third book.
Gregory P. Burnside
"Sticky...it's so hard to keep the line between past and present," [33] says the character.
DUSA
That was very, very clever and I enjoyed it immensely!
J. Lesley

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By DUSA on July 16, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
If, like Catherine Morland you realize that in England, one could rely on "the laws of the land, and the manners of the age. Murder was not tolerated...and neither poison nor sleeping potions to be procured like rhubarb, from every druggist," [Jane Austen, Northanger Abbey, Volume II, Chapter IX., Oxford, Oxford University Press, 1971 edition, p 161], you will be in for shock when you read the glorious country house crime novels of Raicho Raichev.
The minute you delve into Raichev's latest, THE DEATH OF CORINNE, you are thrilled by contrast: bizarre crimes and criminals set in the reassuring world of English landed society. With the entrance of visitors from the Continent, will the gentle shades of English verdure run to red?
Raichev's second novel in the Antonia and Hugh Payne Country House mysteries has the pedigree of the English thriller greats. The settings are handsomely drawn and the leading lady's understated manners do not conceal her exquisite intelligence. Antonia Darcy Payne is the mystery within the mystery.
We encounter Hugh and Antonia Payne at the tail end of their honeymoon. This they are spending at Chalfont Park, the home of Hugh's Aunt, Lady Grylls. The serene and romantic mood is altered by the announcement of the arrival of Lady Grylls's god-daughter, the fabled, wealthy and French chanteuse, Corinne Coreille. Will Corinne bring a retinue, her own hair dresser, a private jet...
...or death threats. "Somebody wants to kill her?"[12] asks Antonia? And wouldn't you know it, Corinne is seeking a safe haven from anonymous letters threatening her life. With a croquet lawn that's "terribly overgrown," [16] what better place to go to earth than shabby-chic Chalfont Park?
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By K. M. VINE VOICE on July 2, 2007
Format: Hardcover
THE DEATH OF CORINNE is the second English country house mystery featuring amateur detective pair Antonia and her now-husband Major Payne, and I've waited eagerly for it. This sequel again leads the reader into labyrinths of cagey subterfuge. Author Raichev is a wily master at conjuring twists and turns as character associations dizzily unravel.

The plotting of this book assigns more of a supporting role to our sleuths than they enjoyed in THE HUNT FOR SONYA DUFRETTE. I had hoped this second installment would treat us to murder at the site of their matrimonial festivities or some such thing because I so enjoyed their fledgling courtship and hoped to see more of its progress. Ah well... we catch up with the newlyweds on "the last leg of their honeymoon at Chalfont Park," the home of the major's aunt, Lady Grylls, and within days they have another murder on their hands. The couple does find opportune moments -- as they snoop -- to banter. Yay!

The reader should be prepared for a quite a few chapters before the victim actually arrives at Chalfont Park. In Lady Grylls' "spacious drawing room," extensive conversation whirls concerning the title character. Her family history and gossip get aired, together with trademark witticisms and the name dropping SONYA so agilely introduced... although a few less names dropped in CORINNE would have suited me. Betwixt these chatty chapters runs an internal monologue of a batty mother-in-mourning who has set out on a journey of vengeance against famous crooner Corinne Coreille, and she (the mother) unfortunately grows tiresome.

Antonia, who now writes detective fiction full time instead of working as a librarian, opines amusingly and tellingly about certain conventions of the mystery genre toward the end of CORINNE.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Atheen on December 15, 2008
Format: Paperback
The plot is carefully constructed and the characters well rounded, but to some extent the work seems confused as to whether it's a modern work or a classic who dunnit. I found it a little difficult to become engaged with the characters because just as I had settled into what seemed a period setting, there was the mention of something profoundly modern to upset the apple cart. The characters, especially Lady Grylis, exhibit the perkie dialogues of a 1920'2-1930's style mystery and in the manner house venue, but the modern references distract. The ending was, however, very clever, which makes the book an adequate first mystery, and I look forward to the author's other work.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By J. Lesley TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on July 13, 2010
Format: Paperback
This second story in the adventures of Antonia Darcy and Hugh Payne finds the pair at the end of their honeymoon. They have married sometime between the end of the first novel,The Hunt for Sonya Dufrette, and the beginning of this story. The couple is spending some time with Major Payne's Aunt Nellie, Lady Grylls of Charlfont Park in Charlfont Parva. They discover that they are to be treated to the arrival of Lady Grylls' god-daughter Corinne Coreille the hugely famous French songstress. Corinne has reportedly been receiving death threats and wants to use Charlfont as a place to lay low until the danger passes.

Antonia and Hugh prove themselves to be very observant once again in figuring out what is actually going on with Corinne and her legal adviser. Except has this very talented author pulled a switch on the readers and the sleuth's turn out to have gotten it wrong? This marvelously convoluted tale has lots of twists and turns to keep mystery readers who want a nice challenge on our toes. I appreciate having an author give me a story that is solvable and yet difficult to solve at the same time. R. T. Raichev put in that one final twist which made me guess wrong, but at least it was my own fault. He didn't put in some incredibly implausible circumstance which could never have possibly happened. The mysteries of Antonia and Hugh Payne take place in the present, but have that comfortable feel of a true classic mystery novel.

When you decide to read this novel, pay close attention to the titles of the chapters. I always read the chapter titles if they are given and many times have a very hard time trying to figure out why the author bothered with them at all.
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