READ FREE Death of a Ghost – doctorio.us
I often think that Johnnie s work was unspoiled by the conventions of the period largely because he had an unwarrantable dislike of children Margery Allingham Death of A GhostMargery Allingham s Death of A Ghost was published in 1934 It is the sixth mystery featuring Albert Campion a seemingly unremarkable man in horn rimmed glasses But his nondescript appearance is a calculated disguise for Campion is in fact a brilliant sleuth with a mysterious past He is among those invited to attend an xclusive Nerds event in the London art world namely the unveiling of a canvas of a famous though long dead English painter to be staged in the late artist s studio But the unveiling does not go as planned When the studio lights are suddenlyxtinguished a young man is viciously stabbed to death with a pair of scissors The crime seems infuriatingly unsolvable to Scotland Yard But Campion has his own suspicions about the killer These solidify when a second murder again apparently unsolvable occurs in the circle of ccentric hangers on gathered about
The Dead Artist S dead artist s widow Campion finds himself drawn into a dangerous cat and mouse game with an increasingly daring murderer one who it would appear is intent on making him the next victim Margery Allingham is perhaps my least favorite of the Golden Age crime writers I find her writing inconsistent A reader never knows what to xpect when they pick up one of her books Her novels can vary wildly in uality and tone and the latter can often change dramatically Shadow on the Crown (The Emma of Normandy Trilogy, even within the same title But peopled with memorably oddball characters and sometimes uite funny Death of A Ghost is an agreeablentertaining if not brilliant mystery Famous artist John Lafcadio might have been dead for thirteen years but that doesn t stop him from being able to cause a good stir Before his death he completed 12 paintings and left instructions that they were to be revealed starting five years after his death one a year until all the sealed crates had
been opened and his masterpieces were available to opened and his masterpieces were available to world Albert Campion comes to visit Lafcadio s widow Belle just before the ContamiNation eighth painting has been shown and being a friend is invited to the unveiling All appears to go well and the painting Joan of Arc is revealed as planned turned into a spectacle and overseen as usual by Lafcadio s agent Max Faustian Things go awry when the lights go out Once the power is restored Tommy Dacre Lafcardio s grand daughter s fiance is found stabbed to death with a pair of ornate scissors Campion soon finds himself investigating not only Dacre s murder but a series of other oddvents another death and ultimately finds himself almost losing his life when he underestimates the murderer This book is not so much a whodunnit as a prove hedunnit Campion figures out the identity of the murderer Taxi ins Glück early and there are plentynough clues for the reader to do the same The killer is clever slick supremely self confident and just a little bit insane Campion s attempts to first unmask then stop the killer are stymied very step of the way and for a while there it looks like he might be the final victim It is luck and back up from his friends that saves him this time not his own intellect This is a very different book that I liked and was unsure about both at the same time It is a departure for the usual crime solving adventure and I m of two minds about whether or not it works Certainly some arly strange vents such as the disappearance of all Dacre s works finally make sense when the killer s motives are revealed and it is all very clever But the pacing felt kind of wrong to be although I think that was mostly because Allingham had things happen in a different order than usual Here the basic story line went murder suspicion discovery of murderer discover of murderer s motives plan to stop murderer failure of said plan resolution by Hand of God Campion didn t really take over this story he just struggled to keep up with other characters and I think that was probably the source of my dissatisfaction That and the ultimate fate of the murderer which seemed like a cop out to me Not one of Allingham s best although we meet some lovely characters such as Belle and her grand daughter John Sebastian Lafcadio is one of the greatest painters of the Edwardian period and his ambition to be known as the greatest painter since Rembrandt was not to be thwarted by a matter as trifling as his own death Lafcadio was not only a brilliantly talented it appears a bit psychic Certain that his reputation would improve dramatically after his death he left aset of twelve sealed paintings with his agent along with the instruction that her widow should wait a suitable interval and then begin doling out the work to. .
Inda and get a chance to see inside the artist s life of the time I still njoyed the story but it won t be first on my list of Campion books to reread If you only want to read one pick a different one If you already know you like the series this is still a good solid addition it and I suggest you read it After all drunk Campion at the nd of the book is a total delight I m told it is in the Peter Davison TV adaptions as well although I haven t seen themCopied across from Library Thing 25 September 2012 The real attack lay somewhere in the Cantonetti Campion wished he could remember The whole of the restaurant had become indistinct He was aware of vast planes of misty chattering ghosts to whom he supposed fatuously he was as invisible as they to him This is one of those not actually mysterious mysteries where the identity of the culprit is clear uite arly on to the detective as well as the reader and the remainder of the story is the protagonist attempting to collect proof Sometimes this works fine Indecent... Exposure (Indecent, especially if it is handled in a suspenseful way In this caseven the police are convinced but seem unable to think of any course of action Campion is particularly ineffectual in this installment perhaps a reaction on the author s part to swinging too far in the action hero direction in the previous book I wasn t convinced
That The Killer Wasthe killer was that diabolically clever and found the resolution disappointing and weakHowever I did like the opening set up with the artists and critics at the mildly Bohemian house party and the descriptions of the art The supporting characters were a bit over the top but at least interesting In order to spite his arch rival Tanueray the painter John Lafcadio left a collection of paintings with his agent Salmon Co with the strict instructions to hold onto them for a decade and then release them one by one at annual special showings he reckoned that his death would at annual special showings he reckoned that his death would demand for his work and that the strategy would give Tanueray an annual posthumous reminder that Lafcadio was the artist the public and the connoisseurs preferredIn fact Tanueray died before that initial decade was up but Lafcadio s widow Belle and the inheritor of the Salmon agency Max Fustian continue the tradition of the annual viewing of a newly revealed Lafcadio work As a much younger friend of Belle s Albert Campion is present at the latest showing During the traditional drinking of the sour wine the Not Without a Fight eating of the curling cruditees and the chattering to people you d normally avoid and anyway can t hear properly because of the yammer the lights go out When they re restored there lies on the floor stabbed through the heart with a pair of ornamental scissors Dacre a protege of Lafcadio s and assumed fiance of Lafcadio s granddaughter LindaThe cops descend in the shape of Campion s old buddy Inspector Stanislaus Oates of the Yard this novel predated the bursting onto the scene of Charlie Luke as Allingham s preferred cop Between them Oates and Campion get absolutely nowhereBut then there s a second death in the sprawling Lafcadio household Claire the managerial wife of one of Lafcadio s old hangers on is found dead of what could have been a heart attack but proves on autopsy to have been poisoning by nicotinic acid and this time Campion knows with a certainty that outstrips anyvidence he might possess who the culprit is and thus probably the perpetrator of the first killing too Oates agrees with Campion s hypothesis but the murder of Claire has been so carefully orchestrated that there s no way Garden Bouquets and Beyond either man can bring the killer to justice using conventional means Campionven considers The Unseen Wonder especially when he realizes the danger that Belle and Linda might be in simply taking justice into his own hands whatever the price he might have to pay Being a civilized human being however he instead maneuvers himself into position as the person the murderer might be best advised next to kill in the attempt to cover up the dirty little secret that lies at the core of the plot This is a terrific thriller Allingham wrote some splendid mysteries but I ve come to the conclusion that her thrillers like this novel Traitor s Purse and of course The Tiger in the Smoke show her at. A newly ravenous public at the rate of one per year Lafcadio's widow unveil theighth canvas to a carefully selected audience Albert Campion an old friend of the widow's is among the cast of gadabouts muses and socialites gathered for the latest ceremony The vent is a success for all but one of the attendees a young artist who is brutally stabbed while others are sipping champagne The art is the last thing on the sleuth's mind whenl the wife of another painter is poisoned The first killing took place at a crowded.
Free read Death of a GhostHer best I think she probably achieved this through her deft ability to portray character I last read Death of a Ghost perhaps forty years ago so obviously remembered very little
of the plot but I did recall the characters notably Belle Max Fustian and Linda whothe plot but I did recall the characters notably Belle Max Fustian and Linda who thought and still think is red hot an aesthetic conclusion with which Campion vidently agreesThere are also to be honest some fairly Zu schnell easy almost cheap bits of characterization going on household hanger on Donna Beatrice an old model of Lafcadio s pretentiously full Blavatsky style of the need to understand the Higher Consciousness and open one s aura to the mystic ways of the universe Donna Beatrice s greeting was sensational and Campion remembered with sudden satisfaction that her real name was Harriet Pickering Rosa Rosa thempty headed yet ravishingly lovely model who readily delivers herself of obscenities and the most remarkable gestures whom Dacre met in Rome and whom he married in order to be able to bring home to the UK with him despite his supposed Sleepless (Bird of Stone, engagement to LindaDacre by the way suggested that he Linda and Rosa Rosa should get a house together and live there in a menage a trois Linda tells Campion she rejected this not on any moral grounds orven theoretical disinclination but simply because the work Dacre had now started to produce was chocolate box than art no way would she live with an artist who d prostituted himself like this Allingham s social attitudes were way ahead of their ra She could also be adolescently smutty at times A ramshackle cottage in the middle of nowhere where Dacre did some of his painting is vocatively called SpendpennyAs for Campion himself we re still in vol 6 of the series stuck with the common Golden Age trope of him being a member of the aristocracy in his case pseudonymous to keep his true identity secret who s philanthropically working beneath himself by solving crimes and acting as a sort of universal uncle to those in distress He retains some of the deceptive vacuity that was Wimsey s stock in trade but for the most part that s toned down a bit and overall he s become a plausible human being Even in the arly novels Campion was a far real and likeable person than caricatures like Wimsey by now he s become perhaps because of the fallibility he displays here a well rounded characterWith the villain being revealed arly on the drive of the novel comes from the attempt by Oates and Campion Invisible (The Curse of Avalon especially the latter to tease out the motivation Allingham handles this very adroitly The book s title is a bit of a giveaway for part of it but I think we d all have worked that bit outven without the clue Besides that s hardly the point The crux of the novel is that Campion is confronted by an ingenious villain who s perhaps at least as intelligent as he is and who holds most if not all of the cards The later stages of the novel in which Campion is a piece of prey there for the taking as he flees through London streets are absolutely nail bitingThis is a thriller whose central dynamic is artificial then and now Scotland Yard detectives don t much welcome far less Yummy Supper encourage the contributions of amateurs in the murder cases they re attempting to solve A few months ago I was writing about thefforts of self styled psychic detectives and the xtent to which in general the cops privately hold these amateur meddlers in contempt was was very vident Of course we re supposed to believe at face value that Lestrade albeit reluctantly welcomed the Deep Listening efforts of Holmes Japp albeit reluctantly welcomed thefforts
Poirot and so Allingham chooses here to acknowledge the artificiality and in ffect to tell us we simply have to accept it if we want to read onThe Inspector never knew uite why he always invited the pale young man to accompany him on this sort of xpedition in defiance of Evolution, Me Other Freaks of Nature edict andtiuette alike but the fact remained and so did Mr CampionI can t recall Lara and the Gray Mare (Hoofbeats: Lara and the Gray Mare, ever coming away from a Campion novel with the feeling that Allingtham had failed to deliver Death of a Ghost is noxception and it may be one of her bestThis is a contribution toward Rich Westwood s Crimes of the Century feature on his Past Offences blog The year chosen for consideration in June 2015 is 193. Art show in full view of the cream of London society For the second killing only the victim and the murderer were present The first killing took place at a crowded art show in full view of the cream of London society For the second killing only the victim and the murderer were present Now the scene was set for the third a lavish dinner party with vintage wines and with Albert Campion's death as the main course Mr Campion must mploy all his tact as well as his formidable intelligence to trap the killer and dodge dea. ,Of Poirot And So