Brunswick Gardens: A Pitt Mystery Audio Cassette – Abridged, Audiobook
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From Library Journal
This reading of Anne Perry's sixth Victorian mystery featuring Thomas and Charlotte Pitt (Defend and Betray, Audio Reviews, LJ 6/15/96) is skillfully rendered by David McCallum, who gives an impeccable performance. Here Perry explores the social and moral issues of the day. Unity Bellwood, assistant to Reverend Ramsey Parmenter, falls down a flight of stairs to her death; her last words are: "No, no, Reverend!" He is suspected of pushing the young woman to her death. There are, however, other people in the house. Thomas, commander of the Bow Street police station, will not be satisfied until the whole truth can be unearthed. Engrossing and enjoyable for lovers of traditional mystery novels, although it holds few surprises for the discerning. Recommended for public library collections.?Jacqueline Seewald, Red Bank Reg. H.S., Little Silver, NJ.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.
'The books are infused with morality without being moralistic' Sunday Times One Hundred Masters of Crime --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.See all Product Description
Top Customer Reviews
As he enters deeper into the household, he discovers that he has crossed paths with his brother-in-law Dominic Cord - a man Charlotte, Pitt's wife, was infatuated with as a teenager and young woman. His return to their life rekindles Charlotte's thoughts of him and also restokes Pitt's resentment towards him. The fact that he is a suspect makes it harder for Pitt to remain purely objective because of the inner resentment he feels against Dominic. This situation makes Pitt more human and believeable. If I met a man in the course of my work, who was once the object of my wife's adoration, I'd have a hard time staying neutral and not resenting the hell out of him too. Perry catches this emotional load that Pitt has to bear exactly right.
Throughout the book, emotions are barely under the surface. From Charlotte's renewed attention to Dominic, Pitt's resentment of Dominic and Charlotte, religious beliefs etc., there is an current that is almost palpable and real. Where these emotions lead is surprising as well as sad. In one case, these is the start of an affection that can only be returned obliquely and indirectly, not as it should be.Read more ›
This is a solve-a-murder mystery, but it's kept interesting by a succession of seemingly contradictory clues and by the possibility of multiple culprits. It's also quite a psychodrama; at times it reminds me of Elizabeth George's work, as one ends up trapped in a room with a number of vocally unpleasant people. A difficult young woman has died, and nearly everyone in the house at the time had some reason to dislike her. Meanwhile, because the primary suspect is a clergyman, the local bishop puts pressure on the police to hush the matter up. The conclusion is clever, neither out-of-left-field nor obvious until the very end.
My essential problem with this book was the anachronistic beliefs and thought patterns its characters revealed. The dead woman, Unity Bellwood, is a feminist, and that's not at all anachronistic; the book is set during a period of agitation for female suffrage. But the way she and her friends express themselves is very much in terms of personal development, of being allowed to "be themselves". Those are very late-20th-century concepts. In addition, when the curate Dominic talks to grieving or troubled people, he may as well be quoting from a modern self-help book; his lines don't have a nineteenth-century ring at all.
Most readers probably will not notice the anachronisms, and despite a certain lack of physical action common to many of Perry's books, this is a generally entertaining novel.
While I didn't think that this was one of her best works, I did feel that Perry was trying to do something different with regards to involving one of the prime suspects in the actual sleuthing process (in this case, Charlotte's widower brother-in-law, Dominic Corde). As I read the book, I felt that Corde, in some ways, made more progress than Pitt. It does make a sort of sense though, since Corde lived in the same house as Bellwood.
I was disappointed that Perry's more interesting supporting characters, Great-Aunt Vespasia and Charlotte's mother, Caroline, barely get a mention. Charlotte's Grandmama only got one good scene, and she is great for comedic relief. I wish Perry could have somehow involved these ladies more in her exploration of how feminism affected them personally. That could have been really interesting.
Still, kudos to Perry for trying something different. Wish it could have been better.
Most recent customer reviews
As a fan of Anne Perry, I look forward to read one of the adventures of Thomas and Charlotte Pitt. However, this latest novel is so disappointing that I am not sure I will ever... Read morePublished on Jan. 4 2000 by Marie-Claire Michoud
Although the details of Victorian society were interesting, I found that the characters kept repeating themselves; rambling speeches that went on way too long without adding... Read morePublished on Oct. 1 1999
This was one of Perry's most clever, I thought. I missed Charlotte, who was not active in this investigation and Emily was on holiday but the intrigue of Pitt's murder case was... Read morePublished on May 5 1999 by Amazon Customer