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The Secret Of Annexe Three [Abridged, Audiobook] [Audio Cassette]

Colin Dexter
3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Book Description

May 3 2002
Chief Inspector Morse seldom allowed himself to be caught up in New Year celebrations. So the murder inquiry in the festive hotel had a certain appeal. It was a crime worthy of the season. The corpse was still in fancy dress. And hardly a single guest at the Haworth had registered under a genuine name…

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Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

In the British author's latest, his admirable Inspector Morse and Sergeant Lewis investigate a murder committed on New Year's Eve at a hotel in Oxford. Three couples are housed in the hotel annex, and one man, winner of the prize in the fancy-dress contest, is found dead in his room. The first problem facing Morse and Lewis is locating the other five guests, including the victim's wife, all of whom have fled, having registered under fake names and addresses. The irascible inspector needs patient Lewis's calming presence more than ever since the killers seem to have carried out a deep-laid and devious plot. They are so clever that the case challenges Morse's talent for spying each tree in a forest of tricks. Engrossed in the story that Dexter tells in his witty and stylish fashion, readers will savor the mystery of the masquerade and the detecting partners' ultimate triumph.
Copyright 1987 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

The Secret of Annexe 3 features Dexter's (The Jewel That Was Ours, Audio Reviews, LJ 9/15/94) popular Inspector Morse investigating a murder that results from a husband's discovery of his wife's infidelity. The story begins somewhat slowly but eventually captures the listener's attention through Dexter's ability to draw his characters and scenes so well. The interrogations are especially well done. Morse is as brooding and moody as the Wagnerian operas he loves. Stage and screen actor Michael Pennington's reading is clear, and the tone of his voice highlights the minor key of this work and Morse's character. An enjoyable work for public libraries.
Michael T. Fein, Catawba Valley Community Coll., Hickory, N.C.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Customer Reviews

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Most helpful customer reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Not Dexter's best effort Sept. 18 1999
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
A good read, but this mystery is not up to the author's standards. The dialogue was not as humorous and imaginative, especially between Morse and Lewis, as it was in previous novels. For some reason the characters come off a little flat in this book. The plot suffers a little as well - just not the usual Dexter potboiler.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 3.8 out of 5 stars  13 reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A nice, middling Morse March 3 2003
By Laurie Fletcher - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
I came across this in a used book store and recognized it immediately for what it was: a Morse mystery that I had never read. As Inspector Morse stories go, this one is good but not exceptional. It is always good to be in the presence of the cranky Inspector, especially since he is so clearly personified by the late, great John Thaw, and this story has some very unique elements in the telling of a good story, but it relies a little too much on coincidence for its final resolution. It was a necessary device in this case, but if Morse hadn't been in that particular pub at that particular time... Oh, well. I think we read these as much for the enjoyment of Morse's cognitive processes and his relationship with Lewis, his long-suffering sergeant. And there are far worse ways to spend and evening! (I don't want this back.)
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars An eventful New Year June 14 2006
By Beverley Strong - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
During the New Year's Eve break when Imspector Morse was supposed to be on leave, a body was discovered in the bedroom of a local hotel which had held a special holiday function in the form of a fancy dress dance and dinner. Morse and Sergeant Lewis were called in to investigate the murder of a guest at the dinner, whose head had been smashed in with a heavy object, but when the names and addresses of all the attending guests were checked out, it appeared that not only had this guest but several others given false names and addresses. As the guests had not been detained before the arrival of the police, a hunt began for the occupants of the rooms who had obviously been there with "significant others" who were not their legal spouses. The reader needs to concentrate closely to unwind the tangled web which follows but if this is possible, it's an intriguing read with Morse being his usual arrogant, boozy self and with poor Lewis being the fall guy for his sarcastic wit.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not my favourite Morse, but still worth reading. Jan. 25 2005
By S. Schwartz - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Although this book was not my favourite of the brilliant Inspector Morse series, it is still worth reading. Even Colin Dexter's less than best efforts are a cut above many who write in this genre. This is a puzzle that has Morse and Lewis going off in the wrong direction right up until the end of the book. They have the gist right, but no way of connecting the facts to make them make sense. Who was the person dressed as a Rastafarian at the New Year's Eve fancy dress ball? Who killed who? Was it the jealous husband or was it the lover? For a time Morse and Lewis did not know the exact identity of the corpse found on the bed in Annexe 3. Morse and Lewis are pitted against a very clever killer this time, but they do manage to sort it out. This is really a wonderful British procedural series. The character of Morse is developing into something quite special.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Morse and Lewis, A Vaudeville Team? Sept. 22 2010
By John F. Rooney - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
"The Secret of Annexe 3" (1986) has Colin Dexter's Inspector Morse and Sergeant Lewis like a vaudeville team trying to solve a diabolically clever murder case. The trouble in a Morse mystery is the murderer(s) are so clever in working out their homicidal schemes that they almost defy detection by mere mortals like Morse and Lewis. Playing Watson to Morse's Holmes, Lewis is faced with a Morse, while bright and intuitive, often comes up with the wrong murderer and the wrong solution. He seems to stumble his way to a solution. They make a good team which the reader often finds as comic as it is serious.
A group of couples book into some typically British and old-fashioned festivities for a few days--a New Year's Eve celebration at the Haworth Hotel. In Room 3 of the hotel's annexe one couple checks in, but one male partner stays behind against his will; he ends up a murder victim. A big looming building crane, a man in a Rastafarian costume, and all sorts of letters turn up as clues in this bizarre mystery. Before the celebratory events, a husband finds out that his wife, Margaret Bowman, has taken up with a lover, and he wants revenge.
In a Morse mystery the inspector either gets the hots for some woman or she with him. He has those "fierce blue-grey eyes" so attractive to certain women, but he always strikes out anyway.
Lewis is usually forced to do the "donkey work" and often gets frustrated and angered by his boss's abruptness and his attitude of certainty. Suspense often creeps into a Dexter narrative.
In this one Morse works up several murder scenarios that don't hold water, and as usual the murderer(s) is no slouch when it comes to sheer inventiveness.
The two stalwart sleuths will often interview the same witness, each time coming away with a nugget that sends the investigation down another cul de sac. Like many other mystery writers certain elements are formulaic in a Dexter mystery, but his fascination with small details and his fertile imagination carry the day.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars More involved with every page June 1 2013
By Ellen Rappaport - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition
I am a huge fan of Inspector Morse & Lewis or should I say Colin Dexter.

Why are you such a huge fan of this series you may ask?

...because the author has me involved from the first page on and it is no different in this entry, "The Secret of Annexe 3".

John Binyan, the proprieter at Haworth Hotel is planning a gala event to include a costume party in welcoming in the New Year. It will also be the opening of the new annexe to his hotel. Binyan is most anxiously awaiting the arrival of his clients/guests, both those who have booked in advance and those calling in at the last moment.
Mr. Binyan, finding he is short staffed, calls in his right hand gal, Sarah Johnstone, from her holiday from work to assist during the New Year.

The guests start arriving and later appear in in full array for the costume party. All is going better than planned until the next morning when a victim is found in annexe 3. Inspector Morse is called in...with Lewis,of course,to identify the remains. For that they need their medical examiner.

Colin Dexter engages me, the reader, in searching out clues by beginning with each guest staying at the hotel. Their background, their place of work, their relationships. Inspector Morse's piercing blue eyes as he questions and later interrogates each possible suspect become almost visible to me as I read on. And with each page I, the reader, become more and more involved in the unraveling of details behind each character.

Colin Dexter never insults his readers with shallowness or boredom... not with THE Inspector Morse at hand.

I continue to enjoy and look forward to each Inspector Morse entry. This, "The Secret of Annexe 3" was no exception. I highly recommend this story and this series wholeheartedly.
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