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The Wild Wood Enquiry (Ivy Beasley) Mass Market Paperback – May 1, 2012
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Top Customer Reviews
Well, "dashed" is too active a verb to use in connection with this novel. "Slowly and excruciatingly smothered" would be more accurate.
I slogged my way through this meandering tale, in which people treated each other badly for no apparent reason, until I realized that: (1) nothing had actually happened, and (2) the characters were all variously rude, avaricious, snobbish, stupid, selfish, lazy, and generally unlikable. Especially the unpleasant old hag Ivy Beasley. By then I was at about page 80, and I quit. I didn't even flip to the end of the book to find out what, if anything, eventually happened.
I'll stick to Purser's Lois Meade mysteries in future.
Gus' ex-wife Katherine calls claiming she needs his help. He wants nothing to do with her as she is a con artist who pretends interest in others while using charm to get what she wants. Her activities often cross the ethics line. She comes to his cottage begging him to let her stay for a few days. He says no, but his good hearted neighbor Miriam Blake offers her a place to stay. Later Miriam realizes her foolishness as she wants to win Gus's heart. The next day Miriam finds Kath gone. She and her friend Rose Budd enter the woods searching for Kath, but find a hand instead. Detective Inspector Frobisher follows Miriam into the woods where there is no hand. The Enquire Within search for Kath and why she came to Barrington.
This is a fun though somewhat slow cozy starring retirees doing an enquiry in which there may have been foul play and loot involved, but they have no evidence of a murder or any valuables stolen; only Gus' belief Kath has pulled a stunt while Frobisher wonders if Gus pulled a stunt. Initially more of a character study than an amateur sleuth, the storyline picks up the pace when Kath's antics begin to surface. Readers who enjoy a British leisurely paced mystery will want to read The Wild Wood Enquiry.
The idea of a group of aging friends establishing a confidential investigative team is unusual, and initially I thought it had potential, but I was wrong. The writing is painfully awkward, and what suspense there is suffers because the characters treat each other so poorly. There isn't even any humor in it (unless it's satire, and I've missed the point, but I don't think so). I might try reading one more Ann Purser mystery before I give up on her, but this one was certainly not the best of the three I've read thus far. If you're entirely new to this author, I'd say give the Lois Meade series a try first; the plots were more solid there.
There is a lack of cases at the Springfields Luxury Retirement Home for the home business of "Enquire Within." To keep things going along, the four partners, Ivy, Roy, Gus, and Deirdre reluctantly accept a case of a missing kitten for the local store keeper.
Quickly though, another more challenging case appears. Gus receives a telephone call from his hated ex-wife and even though it is hazy what is wrong, Gus knows that something bad is amiss. The case quickly becomes a possible missing persons, a possible murder, a possible jewelry theft, and a possible suicide. The village is shocked and jolted by the goings on.
Our intrepid sleuths gather their trundle, walking shoes and off they go to solve these crimes.
I was very pleased with the outcome, sorry for the victims, and tickled by the romance and soon to be wedding of Ivy and Roy. The rhythm of this book is steady and paced. This is just what a cozy should be.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Just couldn't finish this book. All of the storyline seemed so childish and didn't fit together. Ms Purser is a very good author but she missed the mark in this series.Published 3 months ago by Anna1
I loved the book! Each Ivy Beasley story I read, are just as exciting as the first book! Thank you.Published 11 months ago by Sylvia F. Keyser
Ann Purser is my all time favorite author. I recommend her to anyone that loves reading a mystery.Published 18 months ago by JoAnn Perun
The story was OK but I found that I could put it down quite easily. It did not keep my attention for too long.Published 22 months ago by Londoner
Ann Purser is my all time favorite author. She writes beautiful mystery novels or "Brisitsh cozies". Great characters and a fun way to escape with a cuppa (tea).Published on February 8, 2014 by AlwaysAmyBrand
Good to see old folks active and solving crimes. This series is a real good read. I recommend them higly.Published on February 6, 2014 by Kathleen Dummer