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Clouds of Witness by Dorothy L. Sayers

Clouds of Witness (1926)

by Dorothy L. Sayers (Author)

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Lord Peter Wimsey (2)

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*I received this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review*

When Lord Peter Wimsey hears the news of the tragedy that has happened to his family he does not hesitate to return immediately to England, nor does he rests before unfolding the whole truth about what happened that fatal night. The case seems fairly simple to the police: Gerald, Peter's brother, is accused of murdering Denis Cathcart, their sister's Mary fiancé. Peter doesn't believe his brother is guilty, but the fact that he had had a previous fight with Cathcart and the fact that he has been found by Mary lying over the dead man's body when the body was discovered seem to reinforce his culpability.

But certainly Mary does not believe her own brother is guilty, right? And what is wrong with her? Why is she permanently indisposed and incapable of giving statement? And why does Gerald refuse to tell where he was at the time of the murder? What secrets was the murdered fiancé keeping and who else had a reason to want him dead? These are some of the questions Lord Peter sets out to respond, counting with the always precious help of Inspector Parker.

I really liked the puzzle and its resolution, but I have to admit the resolution process was a bit tedious. That's perhaps why it took me almost a month to finish it. Also the way the author chose to tell us the story, resorting to a newspaper story to describe the crime inicially and a letter to unveil the ending, is not one of my favorites, I much prefer to have the action described as it's happening because I'm able to live it more intensely.

This doesn't mean I'm going to give up on this series because I intend to keep following the cases of this charming amateur detective. ( )
  landslide | Jan 14, 2014 |
I fear I might have been really lucky with Gaudy Night (which I think is a masterpiece). Sayers has been disappointing ever since I started to read Peter in order. Oh well. I'll keep on reading and see if it gets better.
The story's fairly good but the writing is incredibly heavy and the pacing is wrong - it's way too slow. I also was relatively indifferent to all the characters, which didn't help. Some funny moments mostly to do with Peter's personality but all in all frankly a bit of a bore. ( )
  RubyScarlett | Nov 11, 2013 |
Way too much writing in dialect. I recognize the urge to represent speech as an extension of character, but: why not leave some room for the imagination? Obviously an early entry in the series, Sayers still finding her feet as a mystery writer and possibly tossing off however many pages of hyperactive/manic camp because mysteries are what she wrote to make money. Happy for her gradual move away from preciousness and towards thoughtfulness in her later writing. The contrast between Clouds of Witness and Gaudy Night is almost shocking. ( )
  amelish | Sep 12, 2013 |
Holds up better than the first book in the series. The characters are getting more depth to them now. The first couple of chapters are a bit dry as they're done in the form of court reporters. Once we get into first person viewpoints, it works a lot better. ( )
  JudithProctor | Aug 6, 2013 |
Another wonderful title by Sayers and not to be missed. ( )
  JeffreyMarks | Jul 11, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 45 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (8 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Sayers, Dorothy L.Authorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Barcilon, RogerCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Bayer, OttoTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Bergvall, SonjaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Bleck, CathieCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Carmichael, IanNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
George, ElizabethIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Griffini, Grazia MariaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Michal, MarieCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Lord Peter Wimsey stretched himself luxuriously between the sheets provided by the Hotel Meurice.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Please distinguish between this mystery novel, Cloud Of Witnesses by Dorothy L. Sayers (1926), and the similarly-titled anthology of essays, Cloud Of Witnesses edited by Jim Wallis and Joyce Hollyday (1991; rev'd 2005). Thank you.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0061043532, Mass Market Paperback)

Rustic old Riddlesdale Lodge was a Wimsey family retreat filled with country pleasures and the thrill of the hunt -- until the game turned up human and quite dead. He lay among the chrysanthemums, wore slippers and a dinner jacket and was Lord Peter's brother-in-law-to-be. His accused murderer was Wimsey's own brother, and if murder set all in the family wasn't enough to boggle the unflappable Lord Wimsey, perhaps a few twists of fate would be -- a mysterious vanishing midnight letter from Egypt...a grieving fiancee with suitcase in hand...and a bullet destined for one very special Wimsey.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:38:57 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

Lord Peter is on vacation when he hears that a dead body has been found at the Wimsey family retreat, and that Lord Peter's brother, the Duke of Denver, is being held for the crime. The dead man? Their sister's fiance.? Lord Peter must clear his brother's name to avoid the death penalty. There is overwhelming circumstantial evidence against the Duke, but Lord Peter firmly believes that his brother is innocent and begins his own investigation into the murder. Can Lord Peter find the truth in time to save his brother and the family name?… (more)

» see all 7 descriptions

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