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Paperback Fear and Miss Betony Book

ISBN: 0915230860

ISBN13: 9780915230860

Fear and Miss Betony

Emma Betony was living out her dignified, elderly, poverty-stricken life when an appeal for help from a former student brought her to the little town of Martinmas and a nursing home transformed into a girls' school. Set in 1940, he school had recently been moved from its former English coastal location to avoid German bombers. Famed Edgar-winning mystery critic and acquisitions librarian at the University of Colorado, James Sandoe call this 1941 Golden...


Format: Paperback

Condition: New


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Customer Reviews

3 ratings

Good read

Fear and Miss Betony is similar in idea to Dorothy L. Sayers's Strong Poison. Both stories involve a long-ago dancer/courtesan and a distant relative who will be her heir. Both have a villain willing to commit murder in order to have that heir inherit so that he/she may ultimately gain the estate. Both use poison as an "impossible" means of death. Lord Peter Wimsey is, however, a much stronger central figure than the police in Fear and Miss Betony. Miss Betony is a strong woman who solves the mystery and saves herself from the death planned for her, and the police come on only in the last chapter(s) to tie up the strings of the plot. The characters are well delineated, but somehow they did not quite click into "real" human beings, maybe because the novel is so short. If you like the "golden age" mystery novels, don't miss this. It is a good read.

An admirably plotted classic mystery novel.

This is an admirably plotted classic mystery novel. There are sinister things happenning at a nursing-home-converted-into-girls'-school and the owner calls a old mentor, the Miss Betony of the title, to help her sort things out. What follows is the enactment of a fiendish murder plot, as cunning as any I have ever read. And fairly clued, too! Lovers of classic detective fiction will not go wrong with this one.

A good old-fashioned read

Personally, I love the old English murder mysteries that offer high tea in the afternoon, draughty mansions and enough arsenic lying around to kill off an entire ecosystem. Set in the English country side during WWII in a former nursing home that has been converted to a girls boarding school, this book offers a lot of atmosphere and intrigue. The plot is tight and clever and there are few loose ends. My only complaint is that the main characters are a bit remote. The author spends a lot of time describing them but, in a way, I didn't care about them. They just seemed to move about the story line like chess pieces. Overall, I enjoyed this book.
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