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Summary

Seething resentments, well-kept family secrets, and a savage murder set the stage for Christmas in Cornwall in this cozy holiday installment of the Daisy Dalrymple mysteries.

In December 1923, the formidable Dowager Viscountess Dalrymple has decided that for Christmas the family will all gather at Brockdene in Cornwall at the invitation of Lord Westmoor. Her daughter - Daisy Dalrymple Fletcher - is somewhat less than pleased but yields to the demands of her mother, especially as she'll be there just before the holidays working on another article for Town and Country about the estate itself. But the family gathering quickly goes awry.

Brockdene, it seems, is occupied only by the Norvilles - poor relations of Lord Westmoor - and Westmoor himself won't be joining them. So Daisy; her husband, Detective Chief Inspector Alec Fletcher of Scotland Yard; and their family must spend their Christmas holiday trapped in an ancestral estate with a rich history of lore, ghost stories, and rumors of hidden treasure and secret passageways with a family seething with resentments, grudges, and a faintly scandalous history.

The veneer of civility that pervades the halls of Brockdene, however, begins to wear thin when long-held family secrets threaten to bubble over, and one of the Christmas guests is found savagely murdered. With few clues as to who committed the murder, and with too many motives as to why, it is once again up to Daisy to sort out the truth that lies beneath a generation of poisonous secrets.

©2002 Carola Dunn (P)2015 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

What listeners say about Mistletoe and Murder

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Generally good performance of an enjoyable story

Any additional comments?

I mostly love the Daisy Dalrymple stories which are delightful mysteries with a regular cast of pleasant, well portrayed characters and with the sex and violence depicted in a gentle or implied manner. (I am quite happy to cope with sex and violence but these stories have a lovely, gentle 1920s feel to them which makes a nice change from some of the more gruesome crime novels.)

I was therefore really pleased to find recordings of the early stories on Audible and was hugely disappointed by these recordings, performed by Americans with absolutely no concept of how the English upper classes spoke in the 20s. It was therefore a relief to discover Lucy Rayner's performances of stories further on in the series. She totally grasps the accents and her performances as Daisy, Alec and most of the other characters fit very well with how I had imagined them to sound.

Mistletoe and Murder is, as one would expect from the title, a Christmas story with a murder thrown in, set in a remote Cornish country house and with an interesting cast of characters in addition to Daisy, Alec, Belinda and Derek and the Dowager Viscountess, whom we have met before. I enjoyed the story and felt that, generally, the performance of the different characters was good and they were well differentiated. There are some odd mispronunciations that are a little annoying but not overly intrusive. But why,oh why, oh WHY did Lucy choose to give a Cornish country solicitor a truly appalling Scottish accent? Fortunately this character does not appear in every scene and did not therefore totally detract from my enjoyment of the story, but a poor Cornish accent would have been a lot easier to cope with in the circumstances. As a result I have taken one star off my performance rating.

Despite the problems however, I am looking forward to listening to more of Lucy Rayner's recordings of the Daisy Dalrymple series.

6 people found this helpful

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More than anything, I feel sorry for Alec

I dare say it’s not a future plot point, but Alec can’t ever catch a break! The only way that I can see that he can enjoy his time off on annual leave, is if he were to divorce Daisy and have her sent to Australia.

1 person found this helpful

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Appalling Narration

It is a pity that these enjoyable reads are totalling spoilt by the awful voices of the narrator. One has to wonder if the author gets to listen to these recording before they are released to the public? If I was the author I'd be very annoyed at how my characters have been portrayed. Policemen are made to sound as if they have no intelligence whatsoever and the female lead sounds likes she rather be competing with screeching seagulls,. One question really does need an answer and that is why would an obvious Cornish character have the accent of a very unwell Scottish person? Perhaps the narrator should learn the different accents associated with the British Isles before taking on another roll!!

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A good story, told very well despite a few errors

The narrator's voice and accent are good for the well educated aristocratic principal character - and she voices everyone else convincingly too. But her few mispronunciations (machinations, modish, castigate, fracas) are all the more jarring because surprising.
But 5 stars overall for a good story very well told.

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  • GR
  • 12-03-22

Better than the last

The last book was set in America and I struggled to finish it, not sure if I did finish it , it was underwhelming. This was a vast improvement. OK it's a bit Enid Blyton famous five but in a good way. Narration is reasonable but still a few odd pronunciations. I think because previous narrators were so bad it makes you listen out for errors.

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Smiles

Fist of this author
Lovely story and nice light listening.
Going to listen to them all now

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ok

a good story but difficult to follow in places and the ending was very abrupt.

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Lost opportunities

Approximately the first third of the book sets the scene in an incredibly long winded and Blytonesque way - it reads like a Famous Five story. Just as the unfortunate reader is about to give up the will to live the murder is committed and then it's downhill all the way. The victim is an uninteresting and unsympathetic character, most of the other Christmas attendees are boring, pompous and one dimensional. Combined with an almost comically bad narration, bad timing, poor pronunciation and shocking characterisation it offers the final nail in the coffin of a disastrous listen. I have really tried to persevere with Daisy and her narrators but I have come to the conclusion that it really isn't worth the effort.

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Lovely story

I find this is one of the more enjoyable story lines. Maybe this is because the voice of the narrator is less grating as she has more male than female voices to interpret and thus shrieks less. Saying that, I have been listening to the whole series so the narrator’s voice is not grating enough to stop me from enjoying this quirky, easy listening fun series of books.

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Good fun

Jolly hockysticks, spiffing and topping. Always loads of fun and I really enjoy the characters.

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  • James
  • 08-11-17

The best one yet.

I was ready to give up after the last story in this series, but I'm glad I stuck with it. The plot and characters were spot on and there was no "filler time" or plot contrivenses in this book. The narrator was excellent as always. In fact, I think she's one of the best female narrators PERIOD. She has a unique "voice" for each character with different dialects and intonations -Just superb. Enjoy.

8 people found this helpful

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  • GrannyGoose
  • 13-01-17

Excellent

I loved the storyline. Was I confused or stumped over who did it? Not really, however I completely enjoyed the ride. This is in the best Murder mystery format. It's the kind of story that has to have a warm fire, a hot drink, and your favorite blanket. The characters are fully formed and each has its own personality. Even better is the narrator. She manages to portray each person with their own distinctive voice. She is one of a few narrators who has a believability for both male and female as well as young and old. In fact, she was so good I did a search for other books narrated by her. Excellent

3 people found this helpful

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  • Patricia Wiseman
  • 05-02-18

Much better then the 2 previous ones

Much less whining. The author is back on point with making a fun little mystery and the narrator does better when she doesn’t have to do “Americans”.
The voice of Piper come across too childish.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Sally
  • 06-01-16

Familiar Plot

Although this is a familiar plot from another mystery, I'll say that it's better handled here. The characters are well sketched, and the Christmas theme is not over done. A very entertaining read in a lively series!

4 people found this helpful

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  • Sclmwalk
  • 20-12-19

Horrible Narrator

Lucy Rayner is a terrible narrator! I have stopped purchasing this book series because Audible changed to this narrator. PLEASE use someone else!!!

1 person found this helpful

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  • John
  • 25-11-17

Why Oh Why Does Lucy Rayner Get The Gig Of Narrator?

Lucy Rayner as narrator is the ONLY reason I won't be buying any more Carola Dunn's Daisy Dalrymple series.
She makes Daisy sound like a vapid air head, with the IQ of a gnat... But worst of all , she makes Daisy's husband sound smug, impatient and supercilious toward Daisy.. when the first narrator used implied he was enchanted by her sunny disposition and unerring ability to help Alec in his quests for the " bad guy"... what a shame that Ms. Dunn settles for Ms. Rayner to read many of her books..
She misses my purchases from now on

1 person found this helpful

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  • Teresa
  • 26-08-16

More of something from the 1920's

Would you listen to Mistletoe and Murder again? Why?

I like the series. It is an easy listening mistery. Actually I enjoy it more than Agathy Christy.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Voracious Reader
  • 12-06-22

A Christmas Murder

Daisy's whole family -- including her mother -- goes to Cornwall for Christmas. The family they're visiting includes an Indian woman who married into a British family but when she came to England with her two children learned her husband was dead, and the family never accepted her. One of her two sons made his life on the sea and he brings an obnoxious clergyman home for Christmas, but he has a very good reason for tolerating man. Unfortunately, his plan goes awry when there is a murder in the chapel in the woods. Daisy once again assists Alec in solving who-dun-it.

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  • Shana B.
  • 01-06-22

Great read as usual 💙

Great story as usual! 1. God help me if I get a mother-in-law like that. 😫😫 Can she just go home already!! Geeze ... 🤦🏽‍♀️ 2. The culprit... smh... all I can say is WOW. 3. Alec and Daisy are my faaaavorite. Then the kiddos and Nana. All too adorable, hilarious, and sweet.

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  • Lori Dykes
  • 02-05-22

Another adventure

Christmas finds Daisy with family and friends. Of course that does not stop a murder from happening!

Luckily Her husband is there and can help wrap everything up!