Judge Crowdy Lobbett has found evidence pointing to the identity of the criminal mastermind behind the deadly Simister gang. After four attempts on his life, he ends up seeking the help of the enigmatic and unorthodox amateur sleuth, Albert Campion. After Campion bundles Lobbett off to a country house in Mystery Mile deep in the Suffolk countryside, all manner of adventures ensue. It's a race against time for Campion to get the judge to safety and decipher the clue to their mysterious enemy's name.
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A novel crime thriller, superbly performed
Francis Matthews' unique comprehension of the mood of the early Allingham novels - a joyous blend of ridiculous humour and thrilling whodunnit.
The last round between Campion and Simister, a real thriller against a positively Dickensian backdrop. The scene-setting, even in this early novel, almost matches parts of Great Expectations and David Copperfield.
This is up with any of Francis Matthews' renditions, even though this early novel, although very good - the first to really "star" Campion - is not the best possible source material. I do wish Audible would crack on and reissue the rest of them. Francis Matthews had a real feel for this material, head and shoulders above any other audio version.
I'm hopeless at tag lines and don't see what this contributes to a review.
Yes, the Francis Matthews version of Allingham's Dancers in Mourning is very rare. I've seen second hand sets of tapes for more than $200. So, please do that one plus More Work for the Undertaker - in which Matthews is truly inspired. The latter is a really great tale with wonderful characters which the reader clearly lived!
- Thomas Holt
One of my favourite Campion novels
- D. J. Dubery