The Sibyl in Her Grave

The Sibyl in Her Grave Julia Larwood S Aunt Regina Needs Help She And Two Friends Pooled Their Modest Resources And Invested In Equities Now The Tax Man Demands His Due, But They Ve Already Spent The Money How Can They Dig Themselves Out Of The Tax Hole Even To The Point Can The Sin Of Capital Gains Trigger Corporeal Loss That S One For The Sibyl, Psychic Counselor Isabella Del Comino, Who Has Offended Aunt Regina And Her Friends By Moving Into The Rectory, Plowing Under A Cherished Garden, And Establishing An Aviary Of Ravens When Isabella Is Found Dead, All Clues Point To Death By Fiscal MisadventureSo Julia Calls In An Old Friend And Oxford Fellow, Professor Hilary Tamar, To Follow A Money Trail That Connects Aunt Regina To What Appears To Be Capital Fraud And Capital Crime The Two Women Couldn T Have A Better Champion Than The Erudite Hilary, As Once Again Sarah Caudwell Sweeps Us Into The Scene Of The Crime, Leaving Us To Ponder The Greatest Mystery Of All Hilary, Him Or Her Self From The Paperback Edition

Sarah Cockburn 1939 2000 wrote under the pen name Sarah Caudwell She was a mystery writer The four books of her Hilary Tamar series are her only novels other than The Perfect Murder which she co wrote with several other novelists, but she also wrote several short crime stories She was the half sister of Alexander Cockburn.Series

[KINDLE] ❤ The Sibyl in Her Grave ➜ Sarah Caudwell –
  • The Sibyl in Her Grave
  • Sarah Caudwell
  • 22 July 2017

10 thoughts on “The Sibyl in Her Grave

  1. says:

    Possibly this was my favorite of the Tamar series It is lovely how this series gets better and better I had to go back and give them all five stars just because they don t drop off and get terrible by the end This one has hokum and euphemistic professions and an evilly helpful girl, and finally we meet Julia s dear Aunt Regina pronounced well, you know And, of course, murrrrderrrrr I listened to half of it on audio, but then I was so impatient to read the rest that I sat down and read it in my room on a beautiful, rainy evening with candles and soup and peonies blooming just outside my window Caudwell tells her readers just the right amount of things She s not always going off about the wood somebody made a cabinet with, or the clothes everybody is wearing, unless I actually want to know about those things I mean, there is that hilarious part in one of these I think it s in the Sirens where Ragwort tells Julia that he thinks her dress was made for someone with broader shoulders That gives you just the information you need to know about Julia s dress, and it establishes Ragwort s talent for euphemism at the same time Anyway, the clothes and furniture and whatnot that Caudwell describes establish the characters, unlike some books, where the author is just taking up my precious time to prove she researched what the kids were wearing and storing their dishes in back in the day So annoying.This one also had some interesting stuff about insider trading and inheritance Mostly, the characters were once again brilliant The only tragedy other than the story is that I have no of these to read I will have to start the series from the beginning again.

  2. says:

    A strange little book that I d idly picked up years ago and only turned to now Undoubtedly, this book is not for everyone as the Alexander Keith s Brewery in Halifax used to say Those who like it, like it a lot Caudwell has a marvelous prose style it s arch, and mannered, maybe even a little fussy, but never quite precious Its politics are intriguingly hard to pin down its a queer book in many senses of the term A parody of the traditional English cozy, it manages to be quit suspenseful in its own right The edition I read has an Edward Gorey illustration on the cover and that seems absolutely right.

  3. says:

    The final Hilary Tamar mystery and one of the strongest offerings in the series, despite its conventional trappings a strange death in a country village I had been hoping for a Ragwort centric story, since the other three major players had a story that focused quite a bit on them the first book Julia, the second book Selena, and the third Cantrip and, like Julia, I have a bit of a hopeless crush on the calm and collected Ragwort I was still delighted by this installment, however, which pushes to center stage Julia s famed Aunt Regina The plot of this book was quite comprehensible, and the characters sharp and delightful.This book does give a wink, a single wink, at Hilary s gender being an unknown variable Now that I ve finished the series, I can confidently state that this aspect is pulled off well If readers are worried that it s handled for humor, that it invites cringes and gawking like Pat from SNL, have no fear It s not like that at all Jokes at the expense of gender are limited to jokes about men that flip conventional patriarchal attitudes and are always presented as views of the characters , and jokes about sexuality are simply not made, because they re not needed GASP, how revolutionary Hilary goes to a lesbian bar in one of the books and the question of gender does not surface to relevance even then And that s just the thing Hilary s gender is irrelevant to the story, or to Hilary as a detective, professor, friend, or to how Hilary lives life in general And that s just cool And, hand in hand with this, queerness is treated as something normal Huzzah.And the last thing I want to say about this series for now, at least I have hopes of tracking down the short stories is the fun way in which the intricate puzzles are played out for the reader The mysteries are clever, but Caudwell does a lot of echoing and shadowing that feels very natural, and that allows the reader to make guesses and leaps without feeling like they re being tricked I pretty much HATE that in mysteries or they re being considered stupid also HATE or the mystery is too easy and the book unengaging analytically Caudwell assumes her readers are as smart as she is, no and no less, and that there s no reason to trick or to twist unnecessarily, just to tell a good story with characters you want to hang out with Or is that just me, that I want to sneak into the Corkscrew and have a glass of wine with them all And I don t even like wine Good book, good end to the series, good series I wish Caudwell had had years to write of these excellent novels.

  4. says:

    It took me some time living as I do in seclusion to realise this book existed, it having been some ten years since the author s previous work, and, having found it, I then put off reading it, knowing that there will be no from this writer Even though she wrote only four novels, her death was a profound loss, not only in itself but also in that it deprives us forever of learning of Julia, Selina, Ragwort, Cantrip, Timothy and the eternally mysterious and genderless Professor Hilary Tamar.The book itself Lovely, cosy, funny, clever, erudite, and ultimately deeply satisfying It is the way of the world, I suppose, that an author like this should have written so little, when others well.

  5. says:

    The delectable, lapidary, sly Caudwell Only four mysteries, but what delights.

  6. says:

    A fun little mystery story, but it didn t live up to its hype.See, a friend of mine sadly not on Goodreads , has been talking up Sarah Caudwell recently Well, this is the novel I found first, so it s the one I read And I suppose it s nice enough, butIt all felt so contrived Oh, the OTT upper class English speech which I went to the wrong parties at Oxford apparently Oh, the way everyone knows everyone e.g., the lawyer you bump into in London happens to have a flat right next to yours in Cannes during the holidays You have to take the book with than a single grain of salt, and you have to be in the mood for writing that strives to sound witty.Not that it isn t witty I giggled over TSiHG a few times Justcontrived.Solidly 3 stars.

  7. says:

    The final installment has a very interesting solution for the mystery, even if Caudwell does indulge rather in red herrings than I would have thought necessary But it also includes quite the most irritating character I can ever remember being fed up with, and as the other characters, together with the author herself, go in very heavily for the rather pitied than censured stance it could almost ruin the whole book for me In a final symmetry, we get some letters from Ragwort, the last of the Nursery quartet, in this one letters in or about 2000 Yes, that s exactly why I loved these books

  8. says:

    I was amused This is a book I picked up recently at a library sale because I noticed the Edward Gorey dust jacket This was not my first Sarah Caudwell, since I read Thus Was Adonis Murdered some years ago but hadn t read the rest of her books Not that I d avoided them, just that I am likely to read a British cozy mystery than a send up of one.Actually, the nudge wink regarding building contractors on page 26 and continued on page 56, might be equally true anywhere in the world Selena says And now the plumber s rung up to say that his van s broken down and he can t be here before midday and the electrician s rung up to say that he has an emergency in High Barnet and can t be here until the afternoon and the carpenter s rung up to say that he has a family bereavement and can t be here at all Hilary, do you think men in the building trade always behave like this To which Hilary replies I m sure it s most unusual What was unusual, from all I had ever heard of such matters, was not their failure to arrive but their telephoning to give notice of it I know little of law or psychic counseling but I do know genealogy On page 117 Regina asks Julia in a letter written on paper with what a quill to look up Jeremiah Arkwright in the probate records in London to see if he had any children What British woman of a certain age and class can t find this information without asking for help It seems like everyone knows everyone But no one knows the Arkwrights Besides that, dates on letters indicate that the story is set in 1999 And there are no computers closer than London

  9. says:

    This is the fourth and last book in this wonderfully amusing mystery series featuring an unlikely set of detectives a group of rather frazzled young English barristers, who are usually occupied with setting up trust funds or defending clients from accusations of tax evasion Caudwell was herself a barrister, and these contemporary stories were written around the 1980 s that s the twentieth century, not the nineteenth however the writing is highly stylized like a novel from that earlier age, and that s half the reason these are so much fun to read.The mystery begins when Julia s aunt writes asking for tax advice all the books are partially epistolary and Julia s investigation leads to a case involving insider trading, blackmail and possibly murder The plot is full of coincidences, but if you can overlook that then it s pretty entertaining.The author deals lightly with gender and sexuality The reader may never even notice that the narrator s gender is never revealed in the prologue to this last book Professor Tamar coyly objects to requests for details of a personal and sometimes even intimate nature.I admit to being a little disappointed with the reveal at the end view spoiler It s hard to believe the mild mannered minister resorts to such extreme measures to get rid of the annoying girl, instead of just putting his foot down and forbidding her to come near him hide spoiler

  10. says:

    A novel with a truly universal theme the perfidy of builders It asks the question that has plagued humanity since the advent of running water now that the plumber has ripped out all your pipes and left them in your front hall, will you ever see him again It also rips out your heart and jumps on top of it a few times, just when you think you re safe.This is a surprisingly devastating and difficult book It s sly and funny, like the others, but when I was done I had to go read some absolute trash just to recover.All four have Edward Gorey covers and this book emphasizes what a perfect choice that was It s like his art clever, macabre, and sad.

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