HomeGroupsTalkZeitgeist
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

A Presumption of Death by Jill Paton Walsh
Loading...

A Presumption of Death (2002)

by Jill Paton Walsh

Other authors: Dorothy L. Sayers (Author)

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Wimsey sequels - Publication Order (2)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
628None15,422 (3.6)24

None.

Loading...

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 24 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 17 (next | show all)
Where I got the book: my bookshelf.

All in all, this is probably the weakest of the Paton Walsh Wimsey books. Paton Walsh does a reasonable facsimile of Sayers' high-life dialogue, but falls down when it comes to rendering the speech of ordinary people--and this novel puts the Wimseys among the villagers of Paggleham, where Harriet and the children are escaping from the London Blitz while Peter--who, by this time, must be getting a bit geriatric for intelligence work--goes off to Destinations Unknown to do something or the other, purely, I suspect, to raise tension as Harriet worries whether he'll return.

Paton Walsh seems determined to get as many characters from the Wimsey books into this one as possible, along with some code-breaking à la The Nine Tailors. The overall effect is something of a patchwork pastiche, not altogether pleasing to the palate. She's imitating the wartime Wimsey stories, of course; ghoul as I am, I'd much rather she'd dealt with the death of young Jerry, because she handles Wimsey tragic better than Wimsey whimsical.

One for the fans, entirely, with nothing much to commend it to the general reader. An OK mystery, but just OK. ( )
  JaneSteen | Dec 29, 2013 |
Even less of a Sayers novel than Thrones, Dominations, as far as I can tell, so it's really basically official fanfiction. Looking at it in that light, it's pretty good: some of it is quite Sayers-ish, and Harriet and Peter's relationship isn't quite so overdone as in the other book. Gets a nice atmosphere of wartime Britain, and it's all worked out quite neatly. I love the hints at the development of Peter's brother, actually.

It's entertaining for what it is, and very easy and quick to read. If you're looking for an evening's brain candy, you could do worse. ( )
  shanaqui | Apr 9, 2013 |
I've been on a Peter Wimsey and Harriet Vane binge lately. Over the past few weeks I've read all of the Sayers novels involving them. That is, I've re-read the ones that Dorothy L Sayers wrote, and then started reading the Jill Paton Walsh continuations. I quite liked [b:Thrones, Dominations|132671|Thrones, Dominations|Dorothy L. Sayers|http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/7127BYKMSZL._SL75_.gif|959167], althougth I didn't think it was entirely successful. This one I liked much more. I enjoyed the evocation of the early WWII years and felt that Paton Walsh portrayed Peter and Harriet in a way which was true to their creator. I'm now reading (and now very much enjoying) [b:The Attenbury Emeralds|8578673|The Attenbury Emeralds|Jill Paton Walsh|http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/412d-ODoEnL._SL75_.jpg|13447729]. It is going to be so very hard to leave my favourite literary couple behind! ( )
  KimMR | Apr 2, 2013 |
World War II is on, Lady Peter Wimsey and children (and the Parker children) are in Hertfordshire. Peter is off somewhere for the FO. Then, of course, there's a murder. Harriet is asked to investigate. It turns out to have more twists than a country road. Peter does help, in the end, as does the indefagitable Bunter. ( )
  Fledgist | Jan 13, 2013 |
A moderately OK mystery (though the murderer of the landgirl was pretty easy to spot!) with Harriet Vane Wimsey doing most of the detecting in the first half of the book since Peter is on a secret mission somewhere. It's early in WWII and Harriet is at Talboys with both the Wimsey and the Parker children and the country round about is full of evacuees, airmen, and landgirls. Naturally Harriet agrees when the overworked local police ask for a bit of help in a murder investigation. But it's Peter who, after his return, comes up with the answer. Nice details of village life at the beginning of the war and a nice visit with the Wimsey family. For those who can't get get enough of Ms. Sayer's characters even when written by another author.
  hailelib | Apr 19, 2012 |
Showing 1-5 of 17 (next | show all)
no reviews | add a review

» Add other authors (2 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Jill Paton Walshprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Sayers, Dorothy L.Authorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Griffini, Grazia MariaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Petherbridge, EdwardNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
People/Characters
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
Epigraph
Dedication
First words
Honoria Lucasta, Dowager Duchess of Denver, to her
American friend, Cornelia, wife of Lambert B.
Vander-Huysen, of New York.

Bredon Hall,                                            12th November, 1939
Duke's Denver, Norfolk

Dear Cornelia,
I think I had better write you my usual Christmas letter now, because naturally the war has upset the posts a little; and one can't really expect ships to go quickly when they are convoyed about like a school crocodile, so tedious for them, or keep to Grand Geometry, or whatever the straight course is called, when they have to keep darting about like snipe to avoid submarines, and anyway I like to get my correspondence in hand early and not do it at the last moment with one's mind full of Christmas trees - though I suppose there will be a shortage of those this year, but, as I said to our village school-mistress, so long as the children get their presents I don't suppose they'll mind whether you hang them on a conifer or the Siegfried Line, and as a matter of fact Denver is thinning a lot of little firs out of the plantation, and you'd better ask him for one before he sends them all to the hospitals.
Quotations
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Blurbers
Publisher series
Information from the Italian Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to the English one.

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (1)

Book description
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 031299138X, Mass Market Paperback)

While Lord Peter is abroad on a secret mission, Harriet Vane, now Lady Peter Wimsey, takes their children to safety in the country. But there's no escape from war: rumors of spies abound, glamorous RAF pilots and flirtatious land-girls scandalize the villagers, and the blackout makes rural lanes as sinister as London's alleys. And when a practice air-raid ends with a young woman's death, it's almost a shock to hear that the cause is not enemy action, but murder. Or is it? With Peter away, Harriet sets out to find out whodunit...and the chilling reason why.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:30:28 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

"Sixty years after Dorothy L. Sayers began her unfinished Lord Peter Wimsey novel, Thrones, Dominations, Booker Prize finalist Jill Paton Walsh took on the challenge of completing the manuscript - with extraordinary success." "Now, Jill Paton Walsh fulfills those hopes in A Presumption of Death. Although Sayers never began another Wimsey novel, she did leave clues. Drawing on "The Wimsey Papers," in which Sayers showed various members of the family coping with wartime conditions, Walsh has devised an irresistible story set in 1940, at the start of the Blitz in London." "Lord Peter is abroad on secret business for the Foreign Office, while Harriet Vane, now Lady Peter Wimsey, has taken their children to safety in the country. But war has followed them there - glamorous RAF pilots and even more glamorous land-girls scandalize the villagers, and the blackout makes the nighttime lanes as sinister as the back alleys of London. Daily life reminds them of the war so constantly that, when the village's first air-raid practice ends with a real body on the ground, it's almost a shock to hear the doctor declare that it was not enemy action, but plain, old-fashioned murder. Or was it?" "At the request of the overstretched local police, Harriet reluctantly agrees to investigate."--BOOK JACKET.… (more)

» see all 5 descriptions

Quick Links

Swap Ebooks Audio
3 avail.
70 wanted
4 pay1 pay

Popular covers

Rating

Average: (3.6)
0.5 1
1 1
1.5
2 6
2.5 4
3 41
3.5 11
4 55
4.5 1
5 16

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.

 

Help/FAQs | About | Privacy/Terms | Blog | Contact | LibraryThing.com | APIs | WikiThing | Common Knowledge | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | 89,411,686 books! | Top bar: Always visible