Wicked Autumn (Max Tudor Book 1)

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Together for the first time are the first three books in the series: Wicked Autumn Ex-spy Max Tudor has established himself as vicar of a quiet idyllic English village. She and her husband live in the mid-Atlantic U. K, the setting for her novels. Malliet has crafted the English village of our dreams, with interesting small shops, a variety of inhabitants, and the local priest.

The book is titled 'The Haunted Season' for a reason Pray you don't miss it. Malliet has made a name for herself with her cozy-but-cutting English mysteries. A Demon Summer makes the case that she may be the best mystery author writing in English at the moment along with French. Malliet, and A Demon Summer is more of a return to the roots of the series. A peer has been poisoned, though not fatally, by a fruitcake prepared by the Handmaids of St. Lucy, a contemplative order. Just when Max is concluding the poisoning was accidental, one of the visitors to the Abbey is done to death.

Once again, Max must find the killer. Think Agatha Christie meets Ian Fleming. Clever deduction and a logical fair-play solution are enhanced by the author's wry humor. Their relationships are fully explored in the exciting opening chapters of the book and one wonders what indeed is going to happen. Then, somewhat out of the blue, one of the characters ends up dead; is it an accident or is there some ill intent involved?

The local constabulary, DCI Cotton and colleagues, are called in and, with the help of Max Tudor, who uses his skills as a former MI5 agent to good effect, begin investigating. The tension mounts and the cause of death is most unusual, which leads to suspected foul play. No obvious suspect comes to the fore but then a chance encounter with one of the villagers at one of his services leads Max to re-consider the circumstances. And, of course, after much more detective work, his theories eventually prove to be correct and those involved in the crime are identified and arrested.

The book keeps the mystery and tension going all through and is a thoroughly enjoyable read. It most certainly leads the reader to want some more of the quirky Nether Monkslip crowd. Jan 07, Hallie rated it it was amazing.

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For readers who relish a traditional mystery with a satiric edge, perfect for a cozy fireside read, try G. Mary Meade in Nether Monkslip, a quaint, isolated village with copious bucolic charm but not a smidge of ethnic diversity. Where once there were blacksmiths and wheelwrights, now shopkeepers peddle New Age crystals and organic jellies and jams. The story opens with the formidable Wand For readers who relish a traditional mystery with a satiric edge, perfect for a cozy fireside read, try G. It falls to the vicar, the Rev. Max Tudor, to help the local constabulary find her killer.

Max is a former MI5 agent with enough mayhem in his past to make his current post feel like Nirvana.

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His biggest challenge in his three years serving as the village priest has been evading relentless speculation regarding his professional celibacy. Shelves: good-read. Max Tudor - Anglican priest, former M15 agent, and village heartthrob - investigates the murder of Wanda Batton-Smythe. Wanda is a resident of Nether Monkslip a sleepy United Kingdom town where a murder had not been committed in centuries.

Wanda was known for her bluntness and rudeness, many thought of killing her in jest. But, someone actually did. The evidence starts to pile up.

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But, the pieces do not fit together until Lydia Lace, an acolyte, at St. Edwold's church faints after she sees the k Max Tudor - Anglican priest, former M15 agent, and village heartthrob - investigates the murder of Wanda Batton-Smythe. Edwold's church faints after she sees the killer. Max Tudor is then able to solve the crime and confront the killer inside the house of God.

A good read. Quote: So the ideally suited Cudwells could wait; their coming to him was formality only. Here was a new case, a wrong to be righted. A problem to be solved.

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A villain to be outwitted. A blight on the village to be eradicated. The garden at the vicarage would soon wear a carpet of wet and dangerously slippy leaves if someone didn't see to it soon. He took a deep swallow of his wine. The chances were good that someone in his bran-muffin-eating, antioxidant guzzling, holistic congregation was guilty of murder. Mar 22, Liz Woods rated it did not like it. I appreciate that Ms Malliet loves the UK and wants to pay her homage to its tradition of village crime novels, but If you're going to do that - at least get things right!

UK students write essays, not 'papers'.

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We eat 'wheat toast' but we don't call it that. We ensure that things might happen, we don't 'insure' them in that way. I could go on. Too many gaffes. Throws book away in disgust. May 18, Joan Curtis rated it it was ok. Wicked Autumn debuts in a typical English village with the first sentence grabbing my attention: Wanda Batton-Smythe, head of the women's Institute of Nether Monkslip, liked to say she was not one to mince words.

The author paints a very nice picture of the English village full of delightful characters. Malliet provided a list of those characters at the beginning of the book in order to help our feeble minds keep up with everything.

Wicked Autumn: A Max Tudor Novel

The best part of t Wicked Autumn debuts in a typical English village with the first sentence grabbing my attention: Wanda Batton-Smythe, head of the women's Institute of Nether Monkslip, liked to say she was not one to mince words. The best part of this book was the main character, the local vicar, Max Tudor. He, in fact, carries the story. There are many things I liked about this book and many things I found less appealing. As I've said the lead sleuth compelled me to keep reading. He's an ex-MI5 agent turned priest. How juicy is that? And, apparently he's quite "dishy"--to use a British term.

I liked the way the author sprinkled in the back story to help us better understand Max. She didn't do a back story dump.

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So, what did I find less appealing? The story moves at a snails pace. I found myself nodding off too many times. But, even more importantly, were the amateur writing errors. For example, point of view was violated on several occasions. Here's one: "I'm not, as a matter of fact," he said, thinking fleeting of his days undercover when he had ruthless tramped down any such dangerous emotion.

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And in the next paragraph, But she looked at him levelly: at the attractive crinkle of lines his slightly downturned eyes, at the normally good-humored curve of his mouth. Two point's of view on the same page without a break. We call his head hopping. I found this frustrating as a reader. I wouldn't call the next complaint an amateur error, but I would call it "cheap" writing.

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That's when the author takes us out of the action by reminding us she knows more than we do. She did this at the end of a chapter when she wrote: Much later he was to wonder, more than once, if he'd been wrong. This is "cheap" because the reader can't foresee into the future. The author would have served us better by omitting that sentence. Will I read another Max Tudor mystery? I'm not sure. My hope is the first one had certain problems because it was the first--like a new car.

Perhaps Milliet will get the kinks out. Again, I loved the main character who I know can carry a series. And, I loved the setting. My suggestion is if you want to try this one, read it with caution and right before bedtime! Oct 29, Charlene rated it really liked it Shelves: mystery , series-by-author , for-phyllis , public-library , forensic , almost-cozy , friends-recommendations , reviewed , clergy.

Yes, I agree with critics who would like to see British English spelling and punctuation, including Britishisms, if the book is meant to be set in England. If we American readers need it, a glossary of terms could be included! I usually have a dictionary handy when I read, however. I say this, having lived in England for five years. However, some critics of this book assume that British readers would not use certain Americanisms references to Oprah, use of "train" instead of "rail" stations, and "eggplant" instead of "aubergine," etc which assumes that American news, TV, and movies are completely foreign to UK readers.

If you can get past all this, you will likely discover a good mystery and you will get to read some really good writing. I liked very much this author's ability with the written word. View 2 comments. Oct 14, Cliff rated it liked it. An interesting take on the 'English village murder' genre, but set in the present. Good plotting and characterisation. But, oh dear! Again another, I assume, American author, as we are told she lives in Virginia although studied at both Oxford and Cambridge Universities. Again, this means the book is full of 'howlers' that display a lack of knowledge of the country.

Fist of all she has an English character refer to an 'eggplant'. No, dear, we never call them that, they are 'aubergines' here. Then we have a small, West Country,village which supports a wide range of shops, a doctor and a solicitor lawyer, all more likely to be found in a country town. There is a greengrocers as well - nowadays you are lucky to find on in a large town, let alone a village. And the village has a 'train' ugh station.

Wicked Autumn, A Fatal Winter, Pagan Spring

Extremely unlikely since. I do wish American authors would take much more care when writing about the UK. Their apparent ignorance can spoil what, in this case, is quite a good, easy read. View all 4 comments. Jan 04, Gwyneth Stewart rated it really liked it. In many respects, this is a classic English village mystery.

Set in the Brigadoon-ish village of Nether Monkslip at the time of the annual Harvest Fayre, it features the usual eccentric villagers and a murder victim so universally disliked that anyone could have done it. What raises this book above its "cozy mystery" neighbors is the amateur detective. The Reverend Max Tudor, parish priest of St.

Edwold's, is a late in life convert, though still handsome enough--and mysterious enough--to cause quite a stir in the female portion of his congregation. He is content to find himself the parish priest in a small, isolated village, but when murder happens in his flock, he is reminded of his background in MIEngland's version of the FBI--and finds himself drawn into the investigation.

I'm going to reserve the next book in this series from my library immediately, and hope that Max Tudor and the inhabitants of Nether Monkslip have many more outings ahead of them. I really enjoyed the start to this series. The writing is excellent. I will need to learn more about Max but it's fun to read about an "amateur" male sleuth for a change of pace. The victim was a hated character overall but that added dimension. Who ended up doing in the deed was actually pretty sad and grim, the ending was a reveal of how dastardly and cold-hearted it was.

The small town has personality, as does the beautiful church with a leaking roof. Seeing the in 3. Seeing the inside of a man who knows religion and respects people, the behind the scenes struggles of being a single Anglican priest in a small town without funds to do proper upkeep of a church, all interested me. The pacing wasn't quite enough for four starts, but I will continue with the series - recommended.

May 05, Christina McLain rated it liked it. When is a cozy not a cozy? Not sure but this book offers the reader a passable pleasant read. I just think it could have been so much better. One career change later, Max is a C of E vicar in a picture perfect English village peopled by eccentric characters and dominated by an alpha female, leader of the WI and harridan at large, wh When is a cozy not a cozy?

One career change later, Max is a C of E vicar in a picture perfect English village peopled by eccentric characters and dominated by an alpha female, leader of the WI and harridan at large, who drives everyone crazy with her bossiness and is promptly murdered for her sins. It's a bit like Midsomer Murders fun but forgettable. Think Christie did it better. Oct 05, Kimberly rated it it was ok Shelves: books-in It was very difficult for me to get into this book.