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The Wild Wood Enquiry (Ivy Beasley) Mass Market Paperback – May 1, 2012

4.2 out of 5 stars 20 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

 “Ivy Beasley is a truly unique character, a kind of cross between Jessica Fletcher, Miss Marple, and Mrs. Slocum.” — Fresh Fiction

About the Author

 Ann Purser is also the author of the Lois Meade Mysteries. She was born in Market Harborough in Leicestershire, and has lived most of her life in villages. She has turned her hand to many things, including journalism (as a columnist for SHE magazine), keeper of hens and donkeys, art gallery manager, clerical assistant in a village school, Open University graduate, novelist, mother of three, wife of Philip Purser, critic and writer. She is an avid reader of detective stories. 
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Product Details

  • Series: Ivy Beasley (Book 3)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Berkley; Original edition (May 1, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0425248046
  • ISBN-13: 978-0425248041
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 0.9 x 6.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #979,755 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Mass Market Paperback
I picked up this book by the author of the Lois Meade mysteries - which I've enjoyed - with expectations of a good cozy contemporary mystery. Those expectations were dashed.

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.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
In Barrington, England the Enquire Within quartet (Ivy Beasley, her cousin Deidre Bloxham, her fiancé Roy Goodman and mysterious Augustus "Gus" Halfhide) are bored after solving recent murder mysteries (see The Measby Murder Enquiry and the Hangman's Row Enquiry). Their only case lately is finding the missing cat Posey Moon.

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.

Harriet Klausner
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
If you like your cozy mysteries full of quirky characters who do and say unexpected things, a plot that seems to meander along, and almost no village atmosphere, then Ann Purser might be an author you'll like. I've tried two of the Lois Meade series, and this is the first of the Ivy Beasley series I've read. I enjoy British mysteries, so that's not the issue. I simply found this one lacking in almost all the things I expect from a cozy.

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.
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By Barb on August 16, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
As a Senior, I do enjoy the exploits of Miss Ivy and fiancé Roy. Love her cat Tiddles. The things she and her friends of Enquire within get unto are quite extraordinary. Dialogue and descriptions neatly handled by Ann Purser.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Reading this gave me the distinct feeling I was on the set in Last Tango in Halifax. The characters were well developed and I could hear them talking as in the Masterpiece tv show. Delightful, fun, easy reading.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
I like this gentle cozy mystery series. It is written with humor, a good sensible mystery or more, and a touch of romance for sizzle. The fact that the characters are of a 'certain age,' makes it unique.

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.
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