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No Wind of Blame by Georgette Heyer
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No Wind of Blame (1939)

by Georgette Heyer

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5352118,829 (3.7)1 / 54
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Plenty of people wanted to murder the shiftless, good-for-nothing Wally Carter. His rich wife, Ermyntrude, was tired of giving him money that he only drank or gambled away. Ermyntrude’s daughter, Vicky, thought her mother would be happier with another man. The slick “Prince” Alexis Varasashvili, had his eye on Ermyntrude’s fortune. And several other characters had equally strong movies for wanting Wally out of the way. But when he actually is shot, it seems that no one could possibly have fired the gun without being immediately discovered. As suspicion rests on each of the characters in turn, it’s up to Scotland Yard’s Inspector Hemingway to discover the truth. Along the way, a sordid scandal comes to light, a crooked business deal is unearthed, and romances end and begin.

I’m glad I chose this book to kick off my 2016 reading, since it contains both an ingenious mystery plot and a wonderful assortment of classic Heyer characters. I loved the histrionic Ermyntrude, who is certainly vulgar but also extremely kind-hearted. And Vicky, who delights in playing a variety of different roles (such as Sports Girl and Dutiful Daughter), annoyed me at first, but eventually I began to enjoy her antics in spite of myself. The main characters are so well-drawn that the mystery is a bit sidelined, but I do think the solution is very clever. I guessed the murderer but not the “how” or the “why,” although Heyer plants a few clues throughout the novel. The romances are a bit undercooked, especially the one involving Wally’s ward, Mary Cliffe. I don’t know whether I’d consider it one of my favorite Heyer mysteries, but it was still a fun read and a great start to the year!
  christina_reads | Jan 2, 2016 |
Not my cup of tea ( )
  hemlokgang | Dec 15, 2015 |
Nothing can be said about the plot without giving away the solution. As usual, the characters are far more interesting than the plot, although the solution turns on a clue fairly given early in the book. This volume is distinguished by a double-romance which is as delightful as it is predictable.
Style: Heyer has a gift for caricature that leaves the reader feeling that her characters are more real than reality. Vicky is particularly theatrical but nonetheless charmingly authentic. ( )
  librisissimo | Nov 4, 2015 |
Wally is a good for nothing slob who lives off his rich wife Ermyntrude. Who may not be the brightest person but her good nature,generosity,and kindness make up for it and I love her character.Drama and all. Throw in a Prince who is a gold digger,Mr Steel who is madly in love with her,her daughter Vicki who takes the quote The Whole World's a Stage literally(she plays a new role depending on how she feels or what she wants to do that day,every day)and a few other colorful characters and you got yourself one heck of a fun story and that's not even counting the murder.

I love Mary's character. She is the common sense of the whole story. It's always nice to have a sensible character among all the others who have a flair of drama about them. Dr.Chester is also sensible but that is about it. Georgette Heyer's characters and writing style know no equal. Her books are always well written and entertaining. I don't read much mystery but I am always up for one of Heyer's. I never read any of her books without laughing and smiling though most of it.

I like that the murder doesn't happen intil 100 and some pages in. It gives you time to get to know the characters and study them to try and guess who did it. I thought the whodunnit was great and enjoyed trying to figure out who did it. I enjoyed seeing Hemingway again but I miss his partner Hannasyde and their banter together.

Over all not my favorite mystery of hers but still great. If you enjoy Heyer's writing or her other mysteries or just are looking for a good mystery I would recommend this book.

Rating:4 out of 5

Content Rating: PG

Keeper: Yes ( )
  thereadingrebel | Dec 30, 2014 |
Nice. A beautiful example of giving the reader all the clues (well, almost all) - but anyone who put them all together (the how, if not the why) in advance of Inspector Hemingway is far more brilliant than I. Persons and personalities, extremely complex intertwining of motives and connections...and the doctor completely surprised me at the end, I'll have to read it again to see if there were clues to that. Several very annoying characters (especially Vicki - she may have been intended to be amusing, but she drove me nuts with her theatrics), several very nice ones - and the obvious HAE didn't happen, but several others did or will. Heyer does a beautiful balance of characters and mystery - the mystery rises out of the interactions of characters, the characters deal with the mystery in individually appropriate ways, and the solution makes perfect sense of all the twists that have been uncovered. Lovely. Now I want to read another Heyer - either a mystery or a romance. Anything she does is good. ( )
2 vote jjmcgaffey | Oct 22, 2013 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Georgette Heyerprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Barnes, Michael TudorNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Liebe, Poul IbTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Meunier, DeniseTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rademacher, SusannaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rammul, TiitCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sanina, A.V.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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'The Prince is coming by the one-forty-five. That means he'll be here in time for tea. Well, I do call that nice!'
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'But you don't talk about God at dinner! Damme, it's not decent!'
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Blurb from Panther paperback edition:
If you want to know how to shoot a man crossing a narrow bridge, without being near the murder weapon when it is fired, the answer lies in the masterly novel of detection. In No Wind of Blame Georgette Heyer once again shows that her amazing ingenuity is equal to the problem.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 140221801X, Paperback)

The superlatively analytical Inspector Hemingway is confronted by a murder that seems impossible—no one was near the murder weapon at the time the shot was fired. Everyone on the scene seems to have a motive, not to mention the wherewithal to commit murder, and alibis that simply don't hold up. The inspector is sorely tried by a wide variety of suspects, including the neglected widow, the neighbor who's in love with her, her resentful daughter, and a patently phony Russian prince preying on the widow's emotional vulnerability and social aspirations. And then there's the blackmail plot that may—or may not—be at the heart of the case…

PRAISE FOR GEORGETTE HEYER:

"Our Georgette Heyer display of the Sourcebooks reprints has been a huge success, not only to those early fans like myself, but to many new readers who appreciate her style and wit."
Nancy Olson, Quail Ridge Books, Raleigh, NC

"Reading Georgette Heyer is the next best thing to reading Jane Austen."
Publishers Weekly

"Wonderful characters, elegant, witty writing, perfect period detail, and rapturously romantic. Georgette Heyer achieves what the rest of us only aspire to."
Katie Fforde

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:20:46 -0400)

(see all 7 descriptions)

Wally Carter's murder seems impossible--not one of the suspects was anywhere near the weapon at the time the shot was fired. Inspector Hemingway is confronted with a neglected widow, the neighbor who's in love with her, her resentful daughter, a patently phony Russian prince, and a case of blackmail that may--or may not--be at the heart of this most unusual case.… (more)

» see all 5 descriptions

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