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Zwaar vergif (1930)

door Dorothy L. Sayers

Andere auteurs: Zie de sectie andere auteurs.

Reeksen: Peter Wimsey & Harriet Vane (1), Lord Peter Wimsey (6)

LedenBesprekingenPopulariteitGemiddelde beoordelingAanhalingen
3,972982,353 (4.06)364
Dashing detective Lord Peter Wimsey is caught up in the murder trial of mystery writer Harriet Vane. Her fiance has died of poisoning exactly as described in one of Harriet's novels -- so naturally she is the prime suspect. As Peter looks on, he not only falls in love with the accused but eagerly helps with Harriet's defense when the first trial ends in a hung jury. Will she be convicted and executed for the crime, or can he save her life and win her hand in marriage?… (meer)
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    Maisie Dobbs door Jacqueline Winspear (sandykaypax)
  2. 00
    Cocaine Blues door Kerry Greenwood (aulsmith)
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    Among the Bohemians: Experiments in Living 1900-1939 door Virginia Nicholson (aulsmith)
    aulsmith: This explains much about Harriet's predicament that I didn't previously understand.
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1-5 van 97 worden getoond (volgende | toon alle)
Miss Climpson is a joy, I'd read a whole book about her.

I'm liking Harriet Vane so far, but am having trouble wrapping my head around Lord Peter having a female love interest. ( )
  misslevel | Sep 22, 2021 |
Wonderfully evocative of 1930’s England and introducing Harriet Vane, the love of Lord Peter Wimsey's life. ( )
  CarltonC | Aug 18, 2021 |
This review is written with a GPL 4.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at WordPress, Blogspot & Librarything by Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission

Title: Strong Poison
Series: Lord Peter Wimsey #6
Author: Dorothy Sayers
Rating: 3.5 of 5 Stars
Genre: Mystery
Pages: 215
Words: 78K

Synopsis:

From Wikipedia

The novel opens with mystery author Harriet Vane on trial for the murder of her former lover, Phillip Boyes: a writer with strong views on atheism, anarchy, and free love. Publicly professing to disapprove of marriage, he had persuaded a reluctant Harriet to live with him, only to renounce his principles a year later and to propose. Harriet, outraged at being deceived, had broken off the relationship.

Following the separation, the former couple met occasionally, and the evidence at trial points to Boyes suffering from repeated bouts of gastric illness at around the time that Harriet was buying poisons under assumed names, to demonstrate – so she says – a plot point of her novel then in progress.

Returning from a holiday in North Wales in better health, Boyes dined with his cousin, the solicitor Norman Urquhart, before going to Harriet's flat to discuss reconciliation, where he accepted a cup of coffee. That night he was taken fatally ill, apparently with gastritis. Foul play was eventually suspected, and a post-mortem revealed that Boyes died from acute arsenic poisoning. Apart from Harriet's coffee and the evening meal with his cousin (in which every item had been shared by two or more people), the victim appears to have taken nothing else that evening.

The trial results in a hung jury. As a unanimous verdict is required, the judge orders a re-trial. Lord Peter Wimsey visits Harriet in prison, declares his conviction of her innocence and promises to catch the real murderer. Wimsey also announces that he wishes to marry her, a suggestion that Harriet politely but firmly declines.

Working against time before the new trial, Wimsey first explores the possibility that Boyes took his own life. Wimsey's friend, Detective Inspector Charles Parker, disproves that theory. The rich great-aunt of the cousins Urquhart and Boyes, Rosanna Wrayburn, is old and senile, and according to Urquhart (who is acting as her family solicitor) when she dies most of her fortune will pass to him, with very little going to Boyes. Wimsey suspects that to be a lie, and sends his enquiry agent Miss Climpson to get hold of Rosanna's original will, which she does in a comic scene exposing the practices of fraudulent mediums. The will in fact names Boyes as principal beneficiary.

Wimsey plants a spy, Miss Joan Murchison, in Urquhart's office where she finds a hidden packet of arsenic. She also discovers that Urquhart had abused his position as Rosanna's solicitor, embezzled her investments, then lost the money on the stock market. Urquhart realised that he would face inevitable exposure should Rosanna die and Boyes claim his inheritance. However, Boyes was unaware of the will's contents and Urquhart reasoned that if Boyes were to die first, nobody could challenge him as sole remaining beneficiary, and his fraud would not be revealed.

After perusing A.E. Housman's A Shropshire Lad (in which the poet likens the reading of serious poetry to King Mithridates' self-immunization against poisons) Wimsey suddenly understands what had happened: Urquhart had administered the arsenic in an omelette which Boyes himself had cooked. Although Boyes and Urquhart had shared the dish, the latter had been unaffected as he had carefully built up his own immunity beforehand by taking small doses of the poison over a long period. Wimsey tricks Urquhart into an admission before witnesses.

At Harriet's retrial, the prosecution presents no case and she is freed. Exhausted by her ordeal, she again rejects Wimsey's proposal of marriage. Wimsey persuades Parker to propose to his sister, Lady Mary, whom he has long admired. The Hon. Freddy Arbuthnot, Wimsey's friend and stock market contact, finds a long-delayed domestic bliss with Rachel Levy, the daughter of the murder victim in Whose Body?

My Thoughts:

Another solid entry in the Lord Peter Wimsey mystery series.

My two issues were the romance and how ga-ga Peter gets over Harriet. He's in his late 30's or early 40's and has shown nothing like this in previous books, so it's hard to take it in this one. He mopes for goodness sake! Second, and almost more importantly, the first 10-20% of the book was the Judge reading all of the notes to the Jury, ie, a huge ass info dump. If I wanted to read that, I'd go read some other series. I hope Sayers doesn't do this again, it was NOT appreciated.

Other than that, this was fun and it was good to see Peter stymied time and time again. He's had it entirely too easy so far and a bit of “roughing” it is good for him. I like my characters to suffer a bit if I feel like they've had it too easy. If I have to suffer while I live, then the characters I read about had better suffer too or by gum, I'll take it up with my elected officials!

On the romance side, Peter's detective friend Parker finally gets the nerve up to ask Peter's sister to marry him and I DID like that. Parker is a hard worker, salt of the earth and an industrious man. I just hope this development won't sideline him as a side character.

Outside of the starting “Judge's notes to the jury/readers”, Sayers kept me interested. With my waning interest in Epic Fantasy, it would appear that the Mystery genre is slowling replacing it or at least taking a large chunk out of it.

★★★✬☆ ( )
  BookstoogeLT | Jul 9, 2021 |
Dashing detective Lord Peter Wimsey is caught up in the murder trial of mystery writer Harriet Vane. Her fiance has died of poisoning exactly as described in one of Harriet's novels, so naturally she is the prime suspect. As Peter looks on, he not only falls in love with the accused but eagerly helps with Harriet's defense when the first trial ends in a hung jury. Will she be convicted and executed for the crime, or can he save her life and win her hand in marriage?
  Gmomaj | Jun 27, 2021 |
Really enjoyable! Such wit! Dorothy Sayers is very clever with language which makes for a wonderful read. Ian Charmichael's narration was a bit muddy in this audiobook (a bit too much bass in the recording). We had a difficult time understanding him sometimes. We had the Kindle edition to help us out on occasion. We just had a great time listening anyway. Quite the page turner. Makes me want to pick up another Lord Peter right away. Too bad there are so few. ( )
  njcur | Jan 28, 2021 |
1-5 van 97 worden getoond (volgende | toon alle)
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» Andere auteurs toevoegen (25 mogelijk)

AuteursnaamRolType auteurWerk?Status
Sayers, Dorothy L.primaire auteuralle editiesbevestigd
Bayer, OttoVertalerSecundaire auteursommige editiesbevestigd
Bleck, CathieArtiest omslagafbeeldingSecundaire auteursommige editiesbevestigd
Brand, ChristiannaIntroductieSecundaire auteursommige editiesbevestigd
Carmichael, IanVertellerSecundaire auteursommige editiesbevestigd
George, ElizabethIntroductieSecundaire auteursommige editiesbevestigd
Griffini, Grazia MariaVertalerSecundaire auteursommige editiesbevestigd
Lehtonen, PaavoVertalerSecundaire auteursommige editiesbevestigd
Michal,MarieArtiest omslagafbeeldingSecundaire auteursommige editiesbevestigd

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"Where got ye your dinner, Lord Rendal, my son?
Where got ye your dinner, my handsome young man?"
"--O I dined with my sweetheart, Mother make my bed soon,
For I'm sick to the heart and I fain wad lie down."

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O that was strong poison, my handsome young man,"
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"I often wonder what we go to school for," said Wimsey. "We never seem to learn anything really useful...."
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Dashing detective Lord Peter Wimsey is caught up in the murder trial of mystery writer Harriet Vane. Her fiance has died of poisoning exactly as described in one of Harriet's novels -- so naturally she is the prime suspect. As Peter looks on, he not only falls in love with the accused but eagerly helps with Harriet's defense when the first trial ends in a hung jury. Will she be convicted and executed for the crime, or can he save her life and win her hand in marriage?

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