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The good news is that this turned out to be a Heyer that I hadn t read before.The bad news was that it was absolutely terrible.Three things save this book from a one star rating.The first is that my personal one stars for GH s books not on GR, mainly because I have no intention of reading them ever again are so much worse WSaB at least has glimpses of Heyer s wonderful wit Helen mercifully suppressed contemporary My Lord John leaden historical don t.The second is that two of the secon The good news is that this turned out to be a Heyer that I hadn t read before.The bad news was that it was absolutely terrible.Three things save this book from a one star rating.The first is that my personal one stars for GH s books not on GR, mainly because I have no intention of reading them ever again are so much worse WSaB at least has glimpses of Heyer s wonderful wit Helen mercifully suppressed contemporary My Lord John leaden historical don t.The second is that two of the secondary characters, Lady Matthews the Sergeant are very entertaining.The third is that GH yet again reworked characters placed them in a better book Frank Shirley from this effort, become Worth Judith in GH s first Regency, Regency Buck I always find this interesting when GH does this in my opinion a sign she was unhappy with the first effort I ve loaned out my Koestler so I can t check I could make a case that alcoholic Mark becomes spoilt Peregrine So many unsatisfactory brothers in Heyer s books A subtle sign that she was unhappy with the financial burden her own brothers were to her perhaps Minor irritations another grey eyed hero, another GH detective story where a female character has a bull terrier.What really bugged me I m going to spoiler this view spoiler Bizarre character motivation, in one case career threatening Implausible obligatory romance although Frank Shirley are so unlikeable they deserve each other Plot holes you could drive a truck through a tedious finale which still didn t explain how Frank knew to go to that particular fishing village one of my least favourite literary tropes killing off relatives that will spoil the happy ever after for the main characters hide spoiler I m baffled why the formidable GH, who suppressed quite a few of her weaker early works, didn t suppress this one This is only my second book by Heyer and my first mystery of hers I honestly can t wait to readby her and, hopefully, this year I will I enjoyed this For the most part, it wasn t so much the mystery that I liked but, rather, the characters I loved Frank Amberley He was somewhat of an ass but he appealed to me As did his family his aunt, uncle, and cousin their interactions with each other were very amusing I found numerous moments to be funny Especially between Amberley and Shirl This is only my second book by Heyer and my first mystery of hers I honestly can t wait to readby her and, hopefully, this year I will I enjoyed this For the most part, it wasn t so much the mystery that I liked but, rather, the characters I loved Frank Amberley He was somewhat of an ass but he appealed to me As did his family his aunt, uncle, and cousin their interactions with each other were very amusing I found numerous moments to be funny Especially between Amberley and Shirley I am having such mixed feelings and luck with each new mystery that I pick up by this author Overall, I enjoy these, but there are also bits that keep them from being perfectly satisfying This one returns to one of my favorite mystery settings the country house village and had the usual range of quirky, colorful, and secretive characters However, the characters are introduced and go about their business without being drawn with any depth The plot is introduced and I loved the creative turn I am having such mixed feelings and luck with each new mystery that I pick up by this author Overall, I enjoy these, but there are also bits that keep them from being perfectly satisfying This one returns to one of my favorite mystery settings the country house village and had the usual range of quirky, colorful, and secretive characters However, the characters are introduced and go about their business without being drawn with any depth The plot is introduced and I loved the creative turn that had the murder in the first scene and a startling choice for victim hence the title All was looking good, but I confess that it lost its sparkle and intensity when I worked out out early I read on because I wanted to get the ongoing story which can be equally as entertaining as the mystery element when it comes to this author.Frank Amberley is the hero He has biting wit, keen intelligence, and generally is a good guy, but he is also rather arrogant and wanted smacking now and then He has it all worked out and it is obvious he does, but he has to wait for the proof He left things to chance a few times because he chose to go a lone hand But that is also what frustrated me about the heroine who also tries a lone hand, but the difference is the danger is close and she truly is alone I get it she s got troubles and can t see her way clear, but she pulls a stupid stubborn thing when she always refuses help and unnecessarily puts herself in danger I think my biggest frustration was that I didn t see the dire need for her to keep away from Frank The police yes because of what she was doing, but she carried on way to long alone Pretty sure two deaths and some other stuff along with her own near death were avoidable if she would have been a little smart with her choices At first, she was interesting the way the author put her at the murder scene, but I got impatient after that becauseall that I just said.The whole story was an exercise in patience because I felt it had the bones of a better story than it was Still, for all that, it was mildly enjoyable and worth my reading time I don t like being sick, but I do like having an entire day to sit in an easy chair with a heating pad and one of those ridiculous blankets with sleeves and a 1930s English murder mystery As far as I can remember, this is the first Georgette Heyer I ve read, but I want to readof her books Lots of twists and turns, plus expressions that are new to me, such as Not strictly the clean potato, eh I m still trying to figure that one out. Barrister Frank Amberley tries a shortcut to his uncle s county house and becomes totally lost He stops to ask a young lady for directions and noticing her distress, he looks carefully and finds a sports car with a corpse behind the wheel Though the girl has a gun, she maintains her innocence Frank heads off to the police station to report the murder but leaves the young woman out of it The police are baffled by the crime and the Sargent, looking for a promotion, enlists Frank s help Frank Barrister Frank Amberley tries a shortcut to his uncle s county house and becomes totally lost He stops to ask a young lady for directions and noticing her distress, he looks carefully and finds a sports car with a corpse behind the wheel Though the girl has a gun, she maintains her innocence Frank heads off to the police station to report the murder but leaves the young woman out of it The police are baffled by the crime and the Sargent, looking for a promotion, enlists Frank s help Frank feels that the murder is only a small piece of the puzzles and tries to stay one step ahead of the police As he encounters the young woman again in the most unlikely places, he wishes she would confide in him Shirley Brown has no good reason to trust Frank She wants to but she can t She has a lot to worry about Besides the murder, there s her brother s predilection for drink and a missing clue to uncover Meanwhile Frank s cousin Felicity s friend Joan is supposed to be celebrating her engagement but her brother s newly inherited estate feels creepy and strange Brother Basil feels is too and all eyes are on his valet, Collins, for it was the old family butler Dawson who was killed This plot is full of cliches and I thought I had it all figured out right away Then, as a testament to Georgette Heyer s writing skills, I changed my mind and was dead certain I was wrong There was no way I could put this book down I stayed up too late and woke up early because I couldn t sleep without finishing it The plot gets complicated at the end but in all is great fun There s a light romance playing out subtly in the background I suspected it was going to happen but it s not what you would call a traditional courtship The absolute best part of this book is the characters Heyer once again created a memorable cast of characters My favorite is Lady Matthews who seems as fluffy headed as her daughter but is quite perceptive I have no idea how she knew what she knew Frank is a complex character He s a cool, logical barrister on the outside and inside he s apparently passionate I didn t really like the way he continually teased and taunted Shirley and the police but the police deserved it I don t know how many towns have such bumbling police forces but Georgette Heyer takes the cake in creating goofy characters I enjoyed them all and they provide comic relief I liked Shirley and felt bad for her At first I wasn t sure what to make of her but as I got to know her, I liked her spirit Collins is a sufficiently creepy valet and other characters kept me guessing This is Georgette Heyer s best mystery I have read so far view spoiler Right away I knew Shirley and her brother were the heirs GH used that plot in another mystery I guessed Basil did it for the same reasons Frank suspected Only Basil seemed so nice and cheerful that I was CERTAIN I was wrong I knocked off a star because I turned out to be right in the end I knew the book was a clue but at that point I thought it was going to be about rare book theft I even suspected Lord Marshall By the time we got to Shirley s kidnapping I was so surprised Basil did it and sad too because he seemed so nice and a lot of fun hide spoiler I think that of all Heyer s mysteries, this one is my favorite I guess it could be classified as a cozy since the main detective isn t a professional he s a barrister, but this case isn t related to his work in any way but it also has aspects of romantic suspense Sort of a cross between Mary Stewart and Dorothy Sayers One aspect of not being a police procedural that leapt out at me during this latest reread is it allowed Heyer to give free rein to her genius for repartee Amberley is a I think that of all Heyer s mysteries, this one is my favorite I guess it could be classified as a cozy since the main detective isn t a professional he s a barrister, but this case isn t related to his work in any way but it also has aspects of romantic suspense Sort of a cross between Mary Stewart and Dorothy Sayers One aspect of not being a police procedural that leapt out at me during this latest reread is it allowed Heyer to give free rein to her genius for repartee Amberley is a modern day well, contemporary to when this was written in 1936 version of so many of her heros in the Regency historical fiction books intelligent, high handed, somewhat short tempered and sarcastic, yet reliable kind I think that the mystery is good too, but to be honest, it is hard for me to judge at this point I have read this several times before and remembered the solution so I was able to pick up clues and hints along the way that I am sure I missed the first time or two I read this The second of Georgette Heyer s detective novels, this one starts with a barrister coming across a car with a murdered man and a young woman standing by He reports the death but does not mention the girl, as he then proceeds to investigate..Well written, good plot and cast of characters Exciting, and with a touch of romance A good light read. &FREE DOWNLOAD ☠ Why Shoot a Butler? ⇱ New York Times and USA Today Bestseller Every family has secrets, but the Fountains are turning deadly On a dark night, along a lonely country road, barrister Frank Amberley stops to help a young lady in distress and discovers a sports car with a corpse behind the wheel The girl protests her innocence, and Amberley believes her at least until he gets drawn into the mystery and the clues incriminating Shirley Brown begin to add up In an English country house murder mystery with a twist, it s the butler who s the victim, every clue complicates the puzzle, and the bumbling police are well meaning but completely baffled Fortunately, in ferreting out a desperate killer, amateur sleuth Amberley is as brilliant as he is arrogant, but this time he s not sure he wants to know the truth PRAISE FOR WHY SHOOT A BUTLER If genteel mysteries are your cup of tea, you have here a steaming teapot just waiting to be poured Bestsellers Georgette Heyer is second to none Sunday Times Heyer is an author to read this means you New York Herald Tribune Sharp, clear, and witty New Yorker Why shoot a butler, indeed Good butlers are hard to come by, and managing a large English manor house circa 1933 calls for a discrete, efficient, capable family servant Unfortunately, this particular butler is currently behind the wheel of his master s vehicle with a hole through his chest Nobutlering for him, poor chap.Who killed Dawson, and why, is just the tip of the puzzle for amateur sleuth Frank Amberley His dinner engagement with his aunt and uncle is interrupted by a wrong turn Why shoot a butler, indeed Good butlers are hard to come by, and managing a large English manor house circa 1933 calls for a discrete, efficient, capable family servant Unfortunately, this particular butler is currently behind the wheel of his master s vehicle with a hole through his chest Nobutlering for him, poor chap.Who killed Dawson, and why, is just the tip of the puzzle for amateur sleuth Frank Amberley His dinner engagement with his aunt and uncle is interrupted by a wrong turn on a dark and foggy road, where he finds an Austin Seven parked on the side of the road Further complicating matters is the presence of an attractive yet acerbic young woman named Shirley Brown Shirley claims she had nothing to do with the mysterious man s death But why then is Shirley carrying a revolver in her coat pocket As the case heats up, author Georgette Heyer takes the reader on a full out detective adventure that is both mystifying as well as fun well, as fun as murder can be I enjoyed this one by Heyer very much It had a well detailed plot, red herrings, car chases, foggy environs, spirited heroines, stupid police constables, and severaldeaths by person or persons unknown Although Heyer is muchwell known for her Regency and Georgian historical romances I ve read a few of them , I m really liking her mysteries much , and look forward to reading the next one very soon Frank Amberley is on his way to dinner at his Uncle and Aunt s estate, when he comes across a young woman, Shirley Brown, standing in the road next to a car with a dead man in the driver s seat.Mr Amberley is asked by the local police force to lend a hand as he was instrumental in closing a prior case Between directing the bungling constabulary and keeping the inept inspector busy with wild goose chases, Mr Amberley solves not only this crime, but several others that occur as a result.While I Frank Amberley is on his way to dinner at his Uncle and Aunt s estate, when he comes across a young woman, Shirley Brown, standing in the road next to a car with a dead man in the driver s seat.Mr Amberley is asked by the local police force to lend a hand as he was instrumental in closing a prior case Between directing the bungling constabulary and keeping the inept inspector busy with wild goose chases, Mr Amberley solves not only this crime, but several others that occur as a result.While I didn t think much of Shirley, I found Aunt Marion a hoot and cousin Felicity a joyful little minx The police sergeant was such a good natured buffoon, you couldn t help like him and sympathize when he was so often the target of Frank s attention Frank Amberley was laugh out loud funny with his very did I mention VERY dry, sarcastic humor In addition, he was extremely clever when putting together all the clues.A criticism would be that there were some clues that the reader wasn t privy to until the big reveal a la Columbo , but the majority you could get as they emerged or realize after the fact that it had been presented but missed overlooked.Overall, a very enjoyable read that I would recommend.Rating 4 Stars