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Robert Barnard - Author

About the Author

Robert Barnard (1936-2013) lived in Leeds, was born in Essex and educated at Balliol. He had a distinguished career as an academic before he became a full-time writer. His first crime novel, Death of an Old Goat, was written while he was professor of English at the University of Tromso in Norway, the world's most northerly university. He was a writer of great versatility, from the light and satirical tone of his earlier books to the more psychological preoccupations of recent ones, such as A Fatal Attachment. Under the name of Bernard Bastable he also wrote novels featuring Mozart as a detective, and is the author of many short stories. He created several detectives, including Perry Trethowan and Charlie Peace. Robert Barnard said he wrote only to entertain. He regarded Agatha Christie as his ideal crime writer and published an appreciation of her work, A Talent to Deceive, as well as books on Dickens, a history of English literature and nearly thirty mysteries. Robert Barnard was the winner of the 2003 CWA Cartier Diamond Dagger Award for a lifetime of achievement.

Featured books by Robert Barnard

Other books by Robert Barnard

Death in a Cold Climate

Death in a Cold Climate

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 04/10/2018

It was midday on December 21st in the Norwegian city of Tromso when the boy was last seen - a tall, blond boy swathed in an anorak and scarf against the Arctic noon. He was not seen again, not until three months later, when Professor Mackenzie's dog started sniffing around in the snow and uncovered a human ear . . . attached to a naked corpse. Nobody knew who he was, or where he had come from. And after three months it was almost impossible to track down the identity of the corpse. But Inspector Fagermo refused to give up - and as he probed deeper into the Arctic city he began to discover a dangerous conspiracy of blackmail, espionage, and cold-blooded murder. Regarded as Robert Barnard's best, Death in a Cold Climate is a scandi detective novel with a captivating mystery at its heart.

A Little Local Murder

A Little Local Murder

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 19/05/2016

The news that Radio Broadwich is to make a documentary on Twytching for broadcast in America spreads through the small village like wildfire. Mrs Deborah Withens, Twytching's resident doyenne and arbiter of good taste, takes it upon herself to control the presentation of her 'county town' and assumes responsibility for picking those that will take part, provoking fierce rivalry amongst the villagers. One resident who is reticent to participate in the fuss is Inspector George Parrish . . . until the murder of the first villager chosen, and a rash of poison pen letters uncovering secrets Twytching's leading citizens had fervently hoped were buried, force him to get involved. In this early classic, Robert Barnard skilfully demonstrates that no one is more cunning in preparing the reader to expect the totally unexpected and his incisive character portrayals in this early gem impart a dimension rarely found in English detective fiction.

A Bronte Encyclopedia

A Bronte Encyclopedia

Author: Robert Barnard, Louise Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 17/05/2013

A Bronte Encyclopedia is an A- Z encyclopedia of the most notable literary family of the 19th century highlighting original literary insights and the significant people and places that influenced the Brontes lives. * Comprises approximately 2,000 alphabetically arranged entries * Defines and describes the Brontes' fictional characters and settings * Incorporates original literary judgements and analyses of characters and motives * Includes coverage of Charlotte's unfinished novels and her and Branwell's juvenile writings * Features over 60 illustrations

Blood Brotherhood

Blood Brotherhood

Author: Robert Barnard Format: eBook Release Date: 09/04/2013

Old church meets new with a vengeance when a monk is brutally murdered at St. Botolphs.

A Fatal Attachment

A Fatal Attachment

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 28/02/2013

Lydia Perceval was - apparently - a charming and gifted woman. As a successful biographer, she led a privileged and comfortable life in her well-ordered, luxurious country-cottage. She felt terribly sorry for her sister, married to an unemployed drunk, mother of two sons, both of whom had loved their adorable Aunt Lydia much more than their parents. Lydia had a way with young people, particularly boys. She knew how to bring out the best in them. As it happened, her sister's two boys had proved something of a disappointment - Maurice had demeaned himself by going to work in television, and Gavin, the best, had died a hero in the Falklands War. Lydia felt a little lost without some young people to groom into greatness. And then she met the Bellingham boys. It was like a reply of the past, two bright young boys, one dark, one fair, just waiting for Lydia to take over their lives. But before she could do so, Lydia was strangled. The motives were subtle, obscure. And there were very few clues. But as Superintendent Mike Oddie started his investigations, he began to suspect that quite a few people hadn't liked the charming Lydia Perceval at all. `Barnard's three-card trickster's skill for deception is deftly demonstrated' Guardian `Barnard not only creates an array of sharply etched characters whom he manipulates like a virtuoso puppet-master, he manipulates the reader as well . . . the solution is a classic' Scotsman `Witty, guileful, and hairy to the end' John Coleman, Sunday Times

The Missing Bronte

The Missing Bronte

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 28/02/2013

Superintendent Perry Trethowan was enjoying a peaceful motoring holiday in North Yorkshire when he and his wife, Jan, had a strange encounter in a country pub. The seemingly unremarkable elderly spinster who introduced herself as Miss Edith Wing, a retired schoolmistress, proceeded to produce form her capacious blue handbag a yellowing manuscript - and claimed that it was part of an undiscovered novel by one of the Bronte sisters. Was it a clever forgery, or the literary sensation of the century? What started out as a harmless holiday diversion for the superintendent turned into a hunt for a vicious attacker as both Miss Wing and Perry himself found themselves in deadly danger. `You can count on a Barnard mystery being witty, intelligent and a joy to read' Publishers Weekly `One of our most original and versatile bloodspillers' Marcel Berlins, The Times `Delicious . . . an appetising entertainment' New York Times

Out of the Blackout

Out of the Blackout

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 28/02/2013

With the Nazis bombing London on a nightly basis, many working-class families sent their children to the comparative safety of the countryside. When the Blitz ended, the families came for their kids . . . but no one ever came for Simon Thorn. His name appears on no list of the evacuated children. And none of his meagre belongings offer any clues to his origins. Now an adult, newly moved to London, Simon is puzzled by an odd sense of familiarity when he walks down certain streets. He remembers his years of terrible nightmares-nightmares that would cause him to wake up screaming, terrifying his bewildered foster parents. And he resolves, once and for all, to find out where he originally came from . . . even as everything he uncovers suggests that, really, he doesn't want to know. Widely praised for his deliciously, maliciously witty mysteries, the multi-award-winning Robert Barnard takes a decidedly different tack in this fascinating novel of wartime London and the dark side of identity. `An engrossing tale of a man's search for his identity and his discovery of an alarming past' Publishers Weekly `There are shrewd characterisations and villains aplenty in this oddly affecting tale' Time `Barnard untangles his riddle with great skill, and I suspect he is going to outwit all but a handful of readers' New York Times

The Bones in the Attic

The Bones in the Attic

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 28/02/2013

Moving into an upmarket new home in Leeds, rising radio star Matt Harper is shocked to find the skeleton of a small child in the attic. His grisly discovery takes him back to the summer of 1969, when he lived with his aunt only a few streets away, reawakening dim, disquieting memories from his childhood. While Detective Charlie Peace heads up the nominal police investigation into the bones, Matt revisits the past in an attempt to solve the mystery himself. Tracking down the other members of a gang of local children he'd once belonged to, he gradually unearths a shared secret that has laid buried ever since. Were the bones in the attic the result of a tragic accident, or has time concealed a more sinister truth? `Exceptionally well-plotted and written with a stylistic modesty that does the story proud' Literary Review `Barnard never disappoints' The Times `Another fine crime novel by the master of the genre' Irish Times

Unruly Son

Unruly Son

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 28/02/2013

First published in 1979, Unruly Son received an Edgar Award nomination for Best Novel of the year. Sir Oliver Fairleigh-Stubbs, overweight and overbearing, collapses and dies at his birthday party while indulging his taste for rare liquors. He had promised his daughter he would be polite and charitable for the entire day, but the strain of such exemplary behaviour was obviously too great. He leaves a family relieved to be rid of him, and he also leaves a fortune, earned as a bestselling mystery author. To everyone's surprise, Sir Oliver's elder son, who openly hated his father, inherits most of the estate. His wife, his daughter, and his younger son are each to receive the royalties from one carefully chosen book. But the manuscript of the unpublished volume left to Sir Oliver's wife-a posthumous last case that might be worth millions-has disappeared. And Sir Oliver's death is beginning to look less than natural. Into this bitter household comes Inspector Meredith, a spirited Welshman who in some ways resembles Sir Oliver's fictional hero. In Robert Barnard's skilful hands, Inspector Meredith's investigation becomes not only a classic example of detection but an elegant and humorous slice of crime.

Death of an Old Goat

Death of an Old Goat

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 28/02/2013

Professor Belville-Smith had bored university audiences in England with the same lecture for fifty years. Now he was crossing the Australian continent, doing precisely the same. Never before had the reaction been so extreme, however, for shortly after an undistinguished appearance at Drummondale University, the doddering old professor is found brutally murdered. As Police Inspector Royle (who had never actually had to solve a crime before) probes the possible motives of the motley crew of academics who drink their was through the dreary days at Drummondale and as he investigates the bizarre behaviour of some worthy locals, a hilarious, highly satirical portrait of life down under emerges. `The perfect gem, one you wouldn't change a word of' Los Angeles Times

Death in Purple Prose

Death in Purple Prose

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 28/02/2013

Norway in cherry blossom time seemed exactly the right place to hold a conference of the World Association of Romantic Novelists (WARN for short). Superintendent Perry Trethowan wondered at times how he had allowed his sister to `con' him into accompanying her to the conference but he finally decided that his role was to be one of amused detachment and observation, most especially of the two Queens of the Conference - frothy, gushy, lethal Amanda Fairchild, the British challenger, and the vast, malevolent Lorelei Zuckerman from America. What Perry had not been prepared for was a body - one clothed in billowing pink, with a bough of cherry blossom carefully placed on the corpse. It was a most unusual murder, in a most unusual place. `Mr Barnard disports himself with reliable zest, humour and cunning' Sunday Times `Immaculately plotted, written with a touch as light as thistledown, and infused with gentle malice, this is a delicious souffle of a whodunnit and the secret, which is worth waiting for, is kept to the end. Brilliant, Mr Barnard' Irish Times `The sort of exhilarating and satisfactory performance readers have come to expect from the virtuoso barnard' Financial Times

Missing Bronte

Missing Bronte

Author: Robert Barnard Format: eBook Release Date: 14/02/2013

Superintendent Perry Trethowan was enjoying a peaceful motoring holiday in North Yorkshire when he and his wife, Jan, had a strange encounter in a country pub. The seemingly unremarkable elderly spinster who introduced herself as Miss Edith Wing, a retired schoolmistress, proceeded to produce form her capacious blue handbag a yellowing manuscript - and claimed that it was part of an undiscovered novel by one of the Bronte sisters. Was it a clever forgery, or the literary sensation of the century? What started out as a harmless holiday diversion for the superintendent turned into a hunt for a vicious attacker as both Miss Wing and Perry himself found themselves in deadly danger. 'You can count on a Barnard mystery being witty, intelligent and a joy to read' Publishers Weekly 'One of our most original and versatile bloodspillers' Marcel Berlins, The Times 'Delicious . . . an appetising entertainment' New York Times

Death in Purple Prose

Death in Purple Prose

Author: Robert Barnard Format: eBook Release Date: 14/02/2013

Norway in cherry blossom time seemed exactly the right place to hold a conference of the World Association of Romantic Novelists (WARN for short). Superintendent Perry Trethowan wondered at times how he had allowed his sister to 'con' him into accompanying her to the conference but he finally decided that his role was to be one of amused detachment and observation, most especially of the two Queens of the Conference - frothy, gushy, lethal Amanda Fairchild, the British challenger, and the vast, malevolent Lorelei Zuckerman from America. What Perry had not been prepared for was a body - one clothed in billowing pink, with a bough of cherry blossom carefully placed on the corpse. It was a most unusual murder, in a most unusual place. 'Mr Barnard disports himself with reliable zest, humour and cunning' Sunday Times 'Immaculately plotted, written with a touch as light as thistledown, and infused with gentle malice, this is a delicious souffle of a whodunnit and the secret, which is worth waiting for, is kept to the end. Brilliant, Mr Barnard' Irish Times 'The sort of exhilarating and satisfactory performance readers have come to expect from the virtuoso barnard' Financial Times

Death of an Old Goat

Death of an Old Goat

Author: Robert Barnard Format: eBook Release Date: 14/02/2013

Professor Belville-Smith had bored university audiences in England with the same lecture for fifty years. Now he was crossing the Australian continent, doing precisely the same. Never before had the reaction been so extreme, however, for shortly after an undistinguished appearance at Drummondale University, the doddering old professor is found brutally murdered. As Police Inspector Royle (who had never actually had to solve a crime before) probes the possible motives of the motley crew of academics who drink their was through the dreary days at Drummondale and as he investigates the bizarre behaviour of some worthy locals, a hilarious, highly satirical portrait of life down under emerges. 'The perfect gem, one you wouldn't change a word of' Los Angeles Times

Fatal Attachment

Fatal Attachment

Author: Robert Barnard Format: eBook Release Date: 14/02/2013

Lydia Perceval was - apparently - a charming and gifted woman. As a successful biographer, she led a privileged and comfortable life in her well-ordered, luxurious country-cottage. She felt terribly sorry for her sister, married to an unemployed drunk, mother of two sons, both of whom had loved their adorable Aunt Lydia much more than their parents. Lydia had a way with young people, particularly boys. She knew how to bring out the best in them. As it happened, her sister's two boys had proved something of a disappointment - Maurice had demeaned himself by going to work in television, and Gavin, the best, had died a hero in the Falklands War. Lydia felt a little lost without some young people to groom into greatness. And then she met the Bellingham boys. It was like a reply of the past, two bright young boys, one dark, one fair, just waiting for Lydia to take over their lives. But before she could do so, Lydia was strangled. The motives were subtle, obscure. And there were very few clues. But as Superintendent Mike Oddie started his investigations, he began to suspect that quite a few people hadn't liked the charming Lydia Perceval at all. 'Barnard's three-card trickster's skill for deception is deftly demonstrated' Guardian 'Barnard not only creates an array of sharply etched characters whom he manipulates like a virtuoso puppet-master, he manipulates the reader as well . . . the solution is a classic' Scotsman 'Witty, guileful, and hairy to the end' John Coleman, Sunday Times

Bones in the Attic

Bones in the Attic

Author: Robert Barnard Format: eBook Release Date: 14/02/2013

Moving into an upmarket new home in Leeds, rising radio star Matt Harper is shocked to find the skeleton of a small child in the attic. His grisly discovery takes him back to the summer of 1969, when he lived with his aunt only a few streets away, reawakening dim, disquieting memories from his childhood. While Detective Charlie Peace heads up the nominal police investigation into the bones, Matt revisits the past in an attempt to solve the mystery himself. Tracking down the other members of a gang of local children he'd once belonged to, he gradually unearths a shared secret that has laid buried ever since. Were the bones in the attic the result of a tragic accident, or has time concealed a more sinister truth? 'Exceptionally well-plotted and written with a stylistic modesty that does the story proud' Literary Review 'Barnard never disappoints' The Times 'Another fine crime novel by the master of the genre' Irish Times

Out of the Blackout

Out of the Blackout

Author: Robert Barnard Format: eBook Release Date: 14/02/2013

With the Nazis bombing London on a nightly basis, many working-class families sent their children to the comparative safety of the countryside. When the Blitz ended, the families came for their kids . . . but no one ever came for Simon Thorn. His name appears on no list of the evacuated children. And none of his meagre belongings offer any clues to his origins. Now an adult, newly moved to London, Simon is puzzled by an odd sense of familiarity when he walks down certain streets. He remembers his years of terrible nightmares-nightmares that would cause him to wake up screaming, terrifying his bewildered foster parents. And he resolves, once and for all, to find out where he originally came from . . . even as everything he uncovers suggests that, really, he doesn't want to know. Widely praised for his deliciously, maliciously witty mysteries, the multi-award-winning Robert Barnard takes a decidedly different tack in this fascinating novel of wartime London and the dark side of identity. 'An engrossing tale of a man's search for his identity and his discovery of an alarming past' Publishers Weekly 'There are shrewd characterisations and villains aplenty in this oddly affecting tale' Time 'Barnard untangles his riddle with great skill, and I suspect he is going to outwit all but a handful of readers' New York Times

Unruly Son

Unruly Son

Author: Robert Barnard Format: eBook Release Date: 14/02/2013

First published in 1979, Unruly Son received an Edgar Award nomination for "e;Best Novel"e; of the year. Sir Oliver Fairleigh-Stubbs, overweight and overbearing, collapses and dies at his birthday party while indulging his taste for rare liquors. He had promised his daughter he would be polite and charitable for the entire day, but the strain of such exemplary behaviour was obviously too great. He leaves a family relieved to be rid of him, and he also leaves a fortune, earned as a bestselling mystery author. To everyone's surprise, Sir Oliver's elder son, who openly hated his father, inherits most of the estate. His wife, his daughter, and his younger son are each to receive the royalties from one carefully chosen book. But the manuscript of the unpublished volume left to Sir Oliver's wife-a posthumous "e;last case"e; that might be worth millions-has disappeared. And Sir Oliver's death is beginning to look less than natural. Into this bitter household comes Inspector Meredith, a spirited Welshman who in some ways resembles Sir Oliver's fictional hero. In Robert Barnard's skilful hands, Inspector Meredith's investigation becomes not only a classic example of detection but an elegant and humorous slice of crime.

Little Victims

Little Victims

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 20/12/2012

The Burleigh school was dying. It would be called a mercy killing were it not for the little band of inept, eccentric, or otherwise unemployable teachers who depended on this absolutely awful English boys' academy for their meagre livelihoods. A lack of funds, facilities, and foresight had brought Burleigh to the very edge of extinction. Now someone planned to give it one final, deadly push. Malice was afoot behind the ivied walls, trailing hard on the heels of Hilary Frome, Headmaster Crumwallis's unfortunate choice for the next headboy. For when something sinister popped up in the punch on Parents' Evening, when nasty pranks became no joke, the next event at bloody Burleigh was bound to be . . . simply murder. `Crackerjack entertainment . . . deserves the kind of raves heaped up on his other prize whodunits.' Publishers Weekly `There is no one quite like Robert Barnard in his ability to combine chills and chuckles and to sprinkle the whole with delicious irony.' San Diego Union `The wryest wit and most scathing satire in today's mystery.' Chicago Sun-Times

A Scandal in Belgravia

A Scandal in Belgravia

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 20/12/2012

A Scandal In Belgravia is a story of murder; it is also a penetrating analysis of a decaying social class and a society in transition. And it is the personal, deeply moving story of two men, Peter Proctor, recently retired as a senior British cabinet minister, and Timothy Wycliffe, a young aristocrat who was bludgeoned to death more than thirty years ago. The two had met in the early 1950s as fledgling diplomats in the Foreign Office. Wycliffe, the grandson of a marquess, had little in common with Proctor, the self-made man on his way up. But the elegant, joyful, intensely alive Wycliffe relished all kinds of people, including his very naive and earnest middle-class colleague. The friendship was close for a while, gradually becoming more occasional. Even Wycliffe's murder, shocking as it was, caused relatively little impact on his friends and the national press, who were distracted that week by more momentous events in the news. Only now, over three decades later, does Wycliffe's brutal death become Proctor's obsession. Relieved of his official post after a long and distinguished career, Proctor decides to write his memoirs. But beyond a banal chapter on his youth, nothing will come. Memories of Timothy Wycliffe take over his mind, pushing aside all other thoughts. It is only in probing the past, in tracking down the people who knew Wycliffe, in discovering the shocking truth of his murder, that Peter Proctor will find peace.

A Hovering of Vultures

A Hovering of Vultures

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 20/12/2012

Susannah Sneddon had never received a great deal of fame or fortune from her novel-writing in the twenties and thirties. In the remote Yorkshire village of Micklewike, where she had lived on a run-down farm, she was now chiefly remembered for the violence of her demise - battered to death, apparently by her jealous brother, who then shot himself. That was back in 1932, and now there was a renewed surge of interest in the Sneddons, led by the shady publisher and entrepreneur Gerald Suzman. He had bought up the farm and formed the Sneddon Fellowship, with the declared aim of making the Sneddons' reputation as a kind of twentieth-century Bronte family. A motley collection of enthusiasts gathered in Micklewike for the inaugural meeting of the Sneddon Fellowship, including Charlie Peace, a young black detective constable sent to keep an eye on things. There was a suspicion that Suzman's motives were not quite as purely literary as they seemed. And when Suzman was found lying dead with his head bashed in, a surprising number of possible reasons for his death emerged amongst the group of Sneddon followers. Charlie and Superintendent Mike Oddie had to examine evidence both old and new as the strange case of the Sneddon literary heritage was gradually unravelled. `One of the deftest stylists in the field' New York Times Book Review `This story is a beauty . . . enlivened by Barnard's wit and his knowledge of the seedier side of literary affairs' Birmingham Post

Blood Brotherhood

Blood Brotherhood

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 20/12/2012

Old church meets new with a vengeance when a monk is brutally murdered at St. Botolph's. Murder wasn't on the agenda for the symposium on the role of the Anglican Church today-until a brother is found dead in his cell. Suddenly the diverse guest list falls under suspicion. Could it be the bishop famous for his television appearances or his exotic counterpart from Africa; one of the three vicars who run the gamut from trendy to traditional; the nondenominational American with a passion for fundraising; or perhaps one of the two Norwegian lady divines? Or is it one of the brothers themselves, taking advantage of the camouflage provided by outside visitors? Surely the tensions between the cloistered clergy and their more worldly visitors can't have led to such an unthinkable occurrence. But why is Father Anselm, the austere head of the Anglican Community, so reluctant to allow an investigation? Is he concerned simply about unfavourable publicity? Or is there a darker secret hidden behind the inscrutable walls of St. Botolph's? `Robert Barnard . . . writes with irony and wit and considerable skill and grace' St Louis Post-Dispatch `A first-rate suspense story . . . highly original and entertaining.' Booklist `Robert Barnard is the most reliable and versatile practitioner of English mystery-comedy on the present scene. A virtuoso . . .' New York Times Book Review

Political Suicide

Political Suicide

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 20/12/2012

The MP for Bootham East was something of a fish out of water - a Tory with a conscience. When he was actually fished out of water, the Thames to be precise, it looked like a clear case of suicide or accident. But as Superintendent Sutcliffe's investigations got under way, and as the by-election campaign to elect his successor hotted up, some very murky political waters were dredged and made to reveal their secrets. The local Labour Party had been hijacked by the extreme left, the Tory Party had had an unattractive young man with dubious City connections foisted on it, and the Alliance candidate had something nasty in his past he would prefer to forget. In fact, by the time of the declaration poll, all the parties wished the by-election had never had to happen, and that the dirt had remained brushed away under the carpet. In this witty and penetrating look at British politics, Robert Barnard shows a `sharp and knowing eye', as well as what Newsweek called his `wit . . . energy and style.

At Death's Door

At Death's Door

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 20/12/2012

Upstairs, in the room looking out to sea, the old man dictates wills, leaving things he no longer has to friends who are long dead. His children, who look after him, can cope with his senility, and thought there was nothing more to learn about his erratic life-style. When Roderick Cotterel hears from his illegitimate half-sister he is intrigued, even charmed: she is the daughter of his father, the distinguished novelist Benedict Cotterel, by the famous actress Myra Mason. She is writing a book about her mother, and is looking for material. The affair between the two had been a gutter press sensation back in the `sixties, but the embers have long since cooled. However, when Cordelia and her boyfriend arrive and begin research for the book both Roderick and his wife begin to have doubts. And when their peaceful Sussex village is threatened by a visit from an almost suspiciously friendly Myra Mason, they realize they have got into something from which it would require superhuman delicacy and tact to extricate themselves. In the event somebody solves their problems in a way that is neither tactful nor delicate, though it certainly is final. `He never takes the easy path of repeating a winning formula.' Time Magazine

A Corpse in a Gilded Cage

A Corpse in a Gilded Cage

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 20/12/2012

Chetton Hall was one of the glories of Jacobean domestic architecture, and the Spenders had lived in Chetton ever since their founder had peculated the money to build it while he was the King's Secretary of Monopolies. Over the years they had accumulated accrustations of dignity, to say nothing of wealth. Which made it doubly shocking when the Earldom descended to Percy Spender, who was `not quite', not to mention his family, who were not at all. When the family descends on Chetton for his sixtieth birthday, accompanied by various hangers-on, their main obsession is to discover his intentions for the future of the place. Hardly less interested is his man of business, and his neighbours, who feel sadly the diminished glory of the house. The Spenders, in fact, have always felt like birds in a guilded cage at Chetton. Before the celebrations are over, one of the birds is a very dead duck indeed. The traditional country house party murder is turned on its head, given a few twists, and ends up much reinvigorated in this witty and lively whodunit by a writer who, as described in The Times Literary Supplement, `can write most under the table with one hand behind his back.' `Mr Barnard always maintains an exceptionally high level, being as much litterateur as mystery story writer; fortunately, he never lets his literary flair get in the way of his mysteries.' New York Times Book Review

The Skeleton in the Grass

The Skeleton in the Grass

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 20/12/2012

The Skeleton In The Grass, reminiscent of Robert Barnard's much-acclaimed Out of the Blackout, illuminates an earlier time and place: a small English village in 1936, as Franco's troops are conquering Spain and Hitler's legions are preparing to overrun Europe. The world at large may be sliding into the abyss of disaster, but life at Hallam, country seat of the glamorous and renowned Hallam family, still represents the ultimate in British civilization. Teatime, with its cucumber sandwiches and cream cakes, continues as it has for a hundred years. It's not that the Hallam family ignores the world outside its gracious doors. On the contrary, Helen and Dennis Hallam care passionately about peace and principle, and Dennis dramatically conveys these views to the nation in his controversial weekly review column. Avowed pacifists, Helen and Dennis represent a political stance that the villagers mistrust and fear. That fear and suspicion turn to nasty pranks when a sinister Fascist major gains control over some of the local youths. Helen and Dennis, and their sons Oliver and Will, become the victims of cruel taunts and the kind of teasing that leads to terror. As the Hallams and villagers grow more hostile, we see the story through the eyes of Sarah Causeley, and idealistic young woman who has recently come to be nursery governess at Hallam. To Sarah, the Hallams represent beauty, brilliance, and style-an idyllic life in the midst of chaos. But as she watches, the Hallams' world begins to disintegrate, and a tense and unexpected encounter leads to a shocking murder. Much more than a crime novel, The Skeleton in the Grass is an extraordinary piece of fiction that captures the essence of a family that captures the essence of a family and a world on the brink of extinction. With subtlety and skill, Robert Barnard amazes with his versatility and storytelling power.

A City of Strangers

A City of Strangers

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 20/12/2012

With A City of Strangers, award-winning novelist Robert Barnard, acclaimed for his quick wit and astute insight into the vagaries of class distinction and human foible, achieves a new level of mastery. He also creates one of his most memorable characters ever: the dreadful Jack Phelan. Dirty, potbellied, vulgar, selfish, Jack is a man everyone loves to hate. And the rest of his family isn't much better. The wife is slatternly, the teenaged children flirt with petty crime and prostitution, even the baby is unpleasant. Only twelve-year-old Michael Phelan seems to have escaped the family curse, and it may be just a question of time until he, too, sinks to the Phelan level. For years the infamous Phelans, known with equal horror to the Social Security office and the local school, have lived in slovenly squalor in their council house in the run-down Belfield Grove Estate in the northern English city of Sleate. The Phelans' infamy has even penetrated the middle-class bastion of respectability, Wynton Lane, where six imposing Victorian stone houses stand in fearful isolation next to Belfield Grove. Wynton Lane and Belfield Grove have only their unfortunate proximity in common until the fateful day when the Phelans come to call. It seems that Jack has won big on the pools, and he's thinking of buying one of the six houses. Nothing so exciting has ever happened on Wynton Lane, and the homeowners hope it never will again. Until now barely nodding acquaintances the Wynton Lane residents call an urgent meeting to map an emergency strategy. What can they do to stop Jack Phelan? What indeed? The Wynton Lane people have always thought of themselves as law-abiding, but they soon discover that malice can take on a momentum of its own, a momentum that can even lead to murder. Shocking, mesmerizing, incisive, A City of Strangers leaves a deep impression on the reader and confirms the artistry of a superb novelist in his prime.

Mother's Boys

Mother's Boys

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 20/12/2012

Lill Hodsden was a monster. She rode roughshod over her daughter, wiped her feet on her husband, blackmailed her lovers and smothered her sons with a mother love that left them screaming out for freedom. Lill set the hackles rising all over Todmarsh, the little South Coast town she queened it over. She was just asking to be done in. And her sons were very ready to oblige. In fact, they had it all worked out, for Saturday night. But when Lill was found garrotted on Thursday, on the way home from one of her boy-friends', the case was wide open, and half Todmarsh would have regarded the murderer as a civic benefactor. Inspector McHale, on his first murder case, is a man who values intelligence, particularly his own. He is convinced he is going to discover the killer. But is he going to discover the right one? In the claustrophobic relationships around the appalling Lill, Robert Barnard has used his gift for creating murderable monsters to set up a murder everybody can sympathize with.

The Disposal of the Living

The Disposal of the Living

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 20/12/2012

Hexton-upon-Weir was ruled by its women: they set the tone, they made the decisions, they called the tune. When they decided to band together to block the appointment of a new vicar who was not only unacceptably High Church but - of all ugly things - celibate to boot, they managed to create merry hell. As the town was riven by faction and counter-faction, Helen Kitterage tried to remain aloof, but before long she was drawn into the maelstrom, as, during the down's fete, ill-will and conspiracy degenerated into murder. Helen was convinced that somewhere among the secrets of this murderous Cranford there must be found some key shame that someone had thought it worth killing to keep unknown. In this tart and witty updating of the traditional English village mystery, `the chameleon talent of Mr Barnard' (Sunday Times) is demonstrated once again through that sharp ear and eye that led the Washington Post to exclaim: `One of the funniest men writing mysteries today has to be Robert Barnard.'

Death and the Chaste Apprentice

Death and the Chaste Apprentice

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 06/12/2012

The Ketterick Festival revolves around the Saracen's Head, a Jacobean inn with its inn-yard and balconies miraculously preserved intact, due to the sloth of successive landlords. Here in festival time are performed the lesser-known masterpieces of Elizabethan and Jacobean theatre. This year it is The Chaste Apprentice of Bowe (a play of uncertain authorship, since no one owned up at the time). But the actors find that the Saracen's Head has been transformed by its new landlord - an Australian know-all with an insatiable curiosity and an instinct for power. The loathsome Des's activities bring him into conflict with actors, committee, even the performers of Adelaide di Birckenhead, the little-known Donizetti opera that is the other lynchpin of the Festival programme. So adept is Des at fomenting friction and ferreting in the undergrowth of private lives that it is not surprising that it all ends in biers. Barnard's festive romp spares no one in the arts world, and even suggests a solution to a long-felt operatic want, showing once again why he has been called `a specialist in snide japery' (Time Magazine), whose mysteries are `among the best' (New York Times).

The Bad Samaritan

The Bad Samaritan

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 06/12/2012

Rosemary Sheffield has a sort of reverse epiphany one day while walking in the park: she no longer believes in God. This sudden loss of faith is at first entirely liberating, but the situation gradually becomes more complicated. Rosemary is, after all, the beloved wife of the vicar at St. Saviour's parish. A storm of controversy erupts in her husband's church congregation, but Rosemary, with the words I do not believe, leaves behind the scandal and gossip for a seaside sojourn in Scarborough. Here she meets Stanko, a Bosnian refugee who illegally entered the country. But what begins as a supportive friendship launches an ungodly chain of events-and Rosemary soon finds herself back at home caught up in a murder investigation. Barnard's trademark seamless plotting and riotous sense of humor stand out wonderfully in his latest whodunit. Booklist His plots are downright Mozartian in their effortless complexity New York Newsday

The Corpse at the Haworth Tandoori

The Corpse at the Haworth Tandoori

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 06/12/2012

The body of a young man, almost naked, in the car park behind one of Haworth's many eating establishments marks the beginning of the case, and it is his identity that is the first puzzle for DC Charlie Peace and his superior Detective Superintendent Oddie. But before long the puzzle that most concerns them is the nature of the close-knit artistic community where Declan O'Hearn had acted as odd-job boy. The little knot of people seem to be united less by their ability as painters than by a common worship of the distinguished artist Ranulph Byatt, who has not only brought them together, but seems to prefer the adulation of his inferiors to the judgement of his equals. Peace, searching for clues, soon starts to wonder if there isn't a sinister reason for this. And as the search for the killer gathers pace, Peace and Oddie uncover a series of dark secrets on the harsh Haworth landscape. Atmospheric, witty and perceptive, The Corpse at the Haworth Tandoori is vintage Robert Barnard.

Death and the Princess

Death and the Princess

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 06/12/2012

Superintendent Perry Trethowan was used to cases that involved people in high places, and in this one he finds himself at the top of the tree - among the British royals. A Princess, albeit only a minuscule royal offshoot, with a snug little apartment in Kensington Palace and a snug little sum on the Civil List, is threatened - but by whom, why, and exactly what is uncertain. Her circle consists mostly of boy-friends, and they are a motley lot, drawn from the worlds of politics, the stage, even the football field. But are they endangered too or are they part of the threat? The Princess (fresh as morning dew, and much more treacherous) trips gaily through the minefield, while around her men keep dying. But blood will out, especially blue blood, and by the time Perry Trethowan gets to the bottom of the case, a murderer has been brought to justice and not a few reputations tremble in the scales. Robert Barnard's ability to create entertaining plots in the classic tradition was recognised through multiple nominations for Edgar Awards in the States, and he received the 2003 CWA Cartier Diamond Dagger Award for a lifetime of achievement.

Bodies

Bodies

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 06/12/2012

Police superintendent Percy Trethowan found London's Soho as colourful and full of life as every-except for the four corpses in a seedy photography studio. Shot doing a layout for Bodies, a soft-porn health and fitness magazine, the photographer, his assistant, and two models had left a camera loaded with film but no clues. Then one victim's obsession with pumping iron sent Trethowan into the erotic world of body-building, where an out-of-shape policeman would learn that building biceps isbeautiful and the temptation to star in the buff in the bluest of movies could really be murder.

No Place of Safety

No Place of Safety

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 06/12/2012

The disappearance from school of two apparently unconnected teenagers worries DC Charlie Peace, until he discovers that they are both working at a hostel for homeless street kids. Peace knows the life and crimes of the people these two are trying to help, and decides that, for the moment, they are safe. But will Peace have cause to regret his decision? After all, just who is the man running the hostel? And how nasty is the local opposition to the place likely to become? As the pair continue their good work, the situation at the hostel becomes even more fraught with the appearance of an Asian girl fleeing an arranged marriage. And it isn't long before a murderous attack seems about to put an end to the whole project. `Nicely drawn characters' Irish Times `Very appealing. . .sensitively written' Evening Standard `He plots a mystery as well as any writer alive' Time Magazine

Posthumous Papers

Posthumous Papers

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 06/12/2012

There were two Mrs Machins, relicts of the talented working-class writer Walter Machin, who was just about to be immortalised by the literary establishment. Viola was large, overbearing and, even in her seventies, still voluptuous. Hilda, the first (and divorced) Mrs Machin, was perky, sharp and the guardian of the deceased Walter's literary papers. For ten years the two `widows' had lived together in the same house, not speaking to each other, but jealously guarding his memory and literary reputation. But before the Machin legend could really take off, there was a fire - and a murder. One of the Mrs Machins was silenced for good, and slowly, from the past, emerged a fascinating and intriguing assortment of characters. Somewhere, in their memories of Walter Machin, lay the catastrophic secret that had led to murder. `A literary whodunit - with an unusual ending' London Mystery Selection `Freshly written with lots of sly fun' Guardian `Finely crafted and intriguing' Booklist `A witty, well-written and intriguing story' Times Literary Supplement

Death on the High C's

Death on the High C's

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 06/12/2012

Opera singers are often described as being larger than life, and certainly this is true of Gaylene Ffrench. Her appetites-for men, for food, for attention-are gargantuan, and her ability to irritate is similarly outsized. So when someone electrocutes the bombastic Australian contralto, few tears are shed at the Northern Opera company (though it's a pity her understudy's so lousy). In fact, most of the company members are dancing a jig, and it falls on Superintendent Nichols to determine which of them might have helped Gaylene along to her just reward. The black tenor tired of being the butt of Gaylene's bigotry? The soprano weary of jealous whispers in her ears? Gaylene's many bedroom conquests, all anxious to avoid a repeat performance? With so many potential suspects, Nichols has his hands full, but Barnard and his readers have a deliciously malicious good time. `The wryest wit and most scathing satire' Chicago Sun-Times `One of the deftest stylist in the field . . . goes about it with a quietly malicious sense of humor' New York Times Book Review

Touched by the Dead

Touched by the Dead

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 06/12/2012

Those two days in May seem to be a highpoint in Colin Pinnock's life: a stunning election victory, a new government, and junior office for himself. But among the many congratulations he receives is one hostile message, a grubby card asking, `Who do you think you are?' Is this merely someone putting him back in his place, or do the words have a more profound meaning? And who, indeed, is he? Who were his real parents? As Colin investigates these questions he is led back in time to an old political scandal: a murder case which led to a politician's downfall and disappearance. Events in the present, however, start tangling with those of the past, and he finds himself the object of a series of incidents that at first seem designed to bring down his career with ridicule, but later actually threaten his life. A beautifully written and intriguing mystery form one of our foremost crime writers. `Robert Barnard has the habit of delighting his readers' Sunday Times

Unholy Dying

Unholy Dying

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 06/12/2012

A witty and poignant chiller about the evil of gossip and the sin of indifference. Father Christopher Pardoe is a good priest. He cares about his parishioners. He is also a human being-and is thus saddled with man's inherent weaknesses. Is it a bit odd, then, how much time the good Father has been spending at the house of a certain young, single mother called Julie Norris? And why, during each of his visits, are Julie's bedroom curtains always closed? Julie looks to be pregnant again. Just who could that father be? As nasty rumours begin to scorch the parish phone lines, Father Pardoe is suspended from St. Catherine's, and Cosmo Horrocks, the West Yorkshire Chronicle's shameless, muckraking journalist, exploits the story in a big way. Nothing goes over better than a juicy sex-and-the-church scandal, except, perhaps, murder. Do Father Pardoe and Julie protest too much? Why did Julie's parents throw her out and disown her? Is she really as bad as they say? And what, exactly, does Cosmo Horrocks hear in that London-to-Leeds dining car that makes him tingle with excitement? A tale of chastity besmirched? This story could make his year. But will it lead to tragedy? And, if so, whose? When Inspector Mike Oddie and Sergeant Charlie Peace are called in to investigate a murder, they are saddened and surprised by the raw emotions-the hate, the fear-they find in the outwardly peaceful town of Shipley. There may be only one killer, but there are many others who must share the town's guilt and, perhaps, one day start the process of healing. Rich with eccentric characters, crisp dialogue, stylish prose, and perceptive insights into human nature, Unholy Dying is vintage Barnard, acknowledged master of suspense. `He plots a mystery as well as any writer alive' Time

The Masters of the House

The Masters of the House

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 06/12/2012

In the late winter of 1979, Leeds housewife Ellen Heenan dies in childbirth - abandoning a guilt-stricken husband to insanity's grasp and leaving four young children to find for themselves. Thirteen-year-old Matthew and Annie, age twelve, know what the authorities will do if the learn of Father's debilitating madness. A close-knit family will be speedily unravelled, its threads scattered carelessly to the winds. So deception is the only recourse - a facade of normalcy that must be carefully constructed to fool prying neighbourhood eyes. And resourceful young Matthew and his sister have the situation well in hand - until a freshly slain corpse turns up beneath the kitchen window . . . `Gripping and satisfying' Chicago Tribune `Subtle and surprising . . . Robert Barnard at his best' San Diego Union-Tribune `A sad, sweet horror of a story . . . the suspense is delicious.' New York Times Book Review

Death in a Cold Climate

Death in a Cold Climate

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 06/12/2012

It was midday on December 21st in the Norwegian city of Tromso when the boy was last seen - a tall, blond boy swathed in an anorak and scarf against the Arctic noon. He was not seen again, not until three months later, when Professor Mackenzie's dog started sniffing around in the snow and uncovered a human ear . . . attached to a naked corpse. Nobody knew who he was, or where he had come from. And after three months it was almost impossible to track down the identity of the corpse. But Inspector Fagermo refused to give up - and as he probed deeper into the Arctic city he began to discover a dangerous conspiracy of blackmail, espionage, and cold-blooded murder. Regarded as Robert Barnard's best, Death in a Cold Climate is a scandi detective novel with a captivating mystery at its heart.

The Continuum Companion to Metaphysics

The Continuum Companion to Metaphysics

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Hardback Release Date: 03/05/2012

The Continuum Companion to Metaphysics offers the definitive guide to a key area of contemporary philosophy. The book covers all the fundamental questions asked in metaphysics - areas that have continued to attract interest historically as well as topics that have emerged more recently as active areas of research. Eleven specially commissioned essays from an international team of experts discuss research problems and methods in metaphysics, reveal where important work continues to be done in the area and, most valuably, indicate exciting new directions the field is taking. The Companion explores issues pertaining to modality, universals and abstract objects, naturalism and physicalism, mind, material constitution, endurantism and perdurantism, personal identity, personal identity, free will, and God. Featuring a series of indispensable research tools, including an A to Z index of key terms and concepts, a detailed list of research resources and a fully annotated bibliography, this is the essential reference tool for anyone working in contemporary metaphysics.

The Rogue's Gallery

The Rogue's Gallery

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Hardback Release Date: 21/11/2011

How far would a child go to rid himself of a despised parent? Or a man of the cloth to be elected pope? From murderous ministers and conniving cardinals to the dark imagination of a schoolboy and the suspicions of an ageing Mr Mozart, this unique collection of Robert Barnard's short stories takes you on a trail of murder, mystery and intrigue with some of his finest - and darkest - literary creations. Including the prizewinning Rogues' Gallery , the haunting tale of a devilish portrait, and Sins of Scarlet , a story of sudden death in the Vatican, this eclectic collection proves that, whether reimagining the life of cultural icons or spying opportunity for morbid crimes amidst events grand and domestic, novelist Robert Barnard is the master of the short story mystery.

The Killings on Jubilee Terrace A Novel of Suspense

The Killings on Jubilee Terrace A Novel of Suspense

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/02/2011

Dying Flames

Dying Flames

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 28/07/2009

The Habit of Widowhood

The Habit of Widowhood

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 23/01/2009

Unholy Dying A Crime Novel

Unholy Dying A Crime Novel

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 23/01/2009

The Bad Samaritan A Novel of Suspense Featuring Charlie Peace

The Bad Samaritan A Novel of Suspense Featuring Charlie Peace

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 09/01/2009

No Place of Safety A Crime Novel

No Place of Safety A Crime Novel

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 09/01/2009

A Bronte Encyclopedia

A Bronte Encyclopedia

Author: Robert Barnard, Louise Barnard Format: Hardback Release Date: 17/07/2007

A Bronte Encyclopedia is an A- Z encyclopedia of the most notable literary family of the 19th century highlighting original literary insights and the significant people and places that influenced the Brontes' lives.* Comprises approximately 2,000 alphabetically arranged entries* Defines and describes the Brontes' fictional characters and settings* Incorporates original literary judgements and analyses of characters and motives* Includes coverage of Charlotte's unfinished novels and her and Branwell's juvenile writings* Features over 60 illustrations

A Cry from the Dark A Novel of Suspense

A Cry from the Dark A Novel of Suspense

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/07/2007

Sheer Torture

Sheer Torture

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 15/02/2007

It can be a bit of an embarrassment when your old man is done in. Particularly, when you are a rising inspector with CID, and hated his guts. Particularly, when your old man was at the time subjecting himself to a do-it-yourself version of a Spanish Inquisition torture. And wearing spangled tights. What it meant was that Perry Trethowan had to go back to the home of his ancestors and do a bit of semi-official sleuthing. Like the Sitwells and the Mitfords, the Trethowans proved that Birth and Artistic Talent could go together. The Trethowans, though, made one hope it didn't happen too often. Perry's father had been a dilettante composer so minor that he stopped composing long before he started decomposing. His Uncle Lawrence, head of the family, was a poet of sorts, one of his aunts a stage designer, another an overgrown schoolgirl who had never grown out of her Thirties crush on Adolf Hitler. And that's only the older generation. Perry goes with fear and trembling back into the lions' den, and finds that his worst forebodings are mere shadows of the grisly reality.

Graveyard Position

Graveyard Position

Author: Robert Barnard Format: eBook Release Date: 03/05/2005

From master of mystery Robert Barnard comes a brilliantly witty and piercingly observant new suspense novel featuring one of the most dysfunctional families ever to grace crime fiction. Meet the Cantelos of Leeds, England. To call the Cantelos dysfunctional is actually a wild understatement. But is one of them also a killer? Clarissa Cantelo, a skilled clairvoyant, apparently thought so. Believing that her sixteen-year-old nephew, Merlyn Docherty, was in peril, she sent him into hiding in Italy, far away from the rest of her family. She told them he was dead. It was safer that way. Now Clarissa herself has died, and Merlyn, a successful lawyer and civil servant who still lives abroad, has returned to Leeds to claim his inheritance. First, he must prove his identity. Is he really Merlyn or, as some of his long-lost relations say they suspect, is he an imposter? Merlyn doesn't mind confirming his identity, but he'd at least like to move into the house that Aunt Clarissa left him in her will while he gets to know some of his relatives. And the house may hold some clues to the Cantelos' past. What is the dreadful family secret that has upset relations between mothers and daughters, husbands and wives, filling even the youngest generation with fear? If Merlyn discovers the truth, buried under decades of deception, his life may once again be in danger. Merlyn must start at the beginning if he is to find the answers. All roads seem to lead back to his grandfather, the formidable Merlyn Cantelo, renowned in the family as an object of both fear and loathing. Though the old man who caused such pain to his family died years ago, his malevolence lives on. Somebody wants young Merlyn gone. With help from police detectives Mike Oddie and Charlie Peace, Merlyn must find that person before the Cantelo curse works its evil again. Wickedly observant and full of his trademark sly twists, The Graveyard Position proves once more that Robert Barnard is in a class of his own.

Mistress of Alderley

Mistress of Alderley

Author: Robert Barnard Format: eBook Release Date: 11/03/2003

Robert Barnard, one of the great contemporary masters of classic mystery, returns with a brilliant new tale of passion and deception. Well-known actress Caroline Fawley has given up a successful stage and television career for love and life in the country. International business titan Marius Fleetwood can't marry her. He already has a wife, though he claims they are "e;just friends."e; But Marius has done something very special for Caroline: he has "e;bought"e; her Alderley, an elegant country home. If he should die, he's arranged to leave her enough money to maintain the extensive house and gardens. Of course, some inquisitive villagers would be happier if Caroline and Marius were respectably wed. People in small towns know all, and they will talk, especially about a glamorous actress. Caroline's adolescent children, Stella and Alexander, seem to accept Marius's weekend visits without distress. And older daughter Olivia, an opera singer on the rise, is too involved in her own career and romantic intrigues to express much interest in her mother's personal life. Caroline is happy and the world is good. Until one day when Caroline's life begins to fall apart. First, a mysterious young man backpacking his way through the countryside arrives at the door. He says his name is Peter Bagshaw, but Caroline sees instantly that he must be related to Marius; perhaps he's even his son. What else has Marius hidden from Caroline? Who is this man, Marius Fleetwood? Is everything about him a lie? When a murder occurs, detectives Mike Oddie and Charlie Peace must probe the lives of numerous suspects who had good reason to kill. As always in a Barnard mystery, the fun is in the details, the characters, the twists. With big houses, wealth, opera, and obsessive devotion as some of his ingredients, Robert Barnard gives us a witty, richly nuanced novel worthy of the crime-writing star that he is.

Bones in the Attic

Bones in the Attic

Author: Robert Barnard Format: eBook Release Date: 24/04/2002

Matt Harper, a television and radio personality and a former professional soccer player, has just bought Elderholm, an old stone house in Leeds in the north of England. It's ideal for him, his partner Aileen, and her three children. Even the attic space seems just right -- the perfect place for a game room or a children's retreat. But as Matt and his decorator tour the property, they find something that will put the attic off-limits for a long time to come: a tiny child's skeleton that has clearly been there for years. What happened to the child, and how did its skeleton get into the attic? Detective Sergeant Charlie Peace and his forensic team think the child's remains have been in the attic for thirty years. Thirty years? Matt remembers that time. It was 1969 and he was seven years old. He was in the neighborhood, spending the summer with an aunt. That was the summer that Elderholm's owner left her house empty when she went to visit a daughter in Australia. What happened that summer? What memories lie deep in Matt's consciousness? Where are the other children from that summer who now, of course, are adults? Who killed the little child and why was he or she never reported missing? And who has now written to Matt, assuring him that he had no part in what occurred, that he had gone home to London before it happened? As Matt struggles to recover his memory of that strange summer, both he and Charlie Peace ponder what it means to love and lose a child and how one thoughtless decision can change a life forever. Richly evocative and deeply poignant, The Bones in the Attic is crime writing at its best from one of the great contemporary masters of mystery.

The Corpse at the Haworth Tandoori

The Corpse at the Haworth Tandoori

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 05/04/1999

A Short History of English Literature

A Short History of English Literature

Author: Robert Barnard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/04/1994

Thoroughly updated to include writers such as Caryl Churchill, Brian Friel, Martin Amis and Graham Swift, this book remains the best overall survey of English literature available.Robert Barnard looks selectively at the most important writers within each period from the time of Chaucer, and focuses on one or two of their works in detail. He deals briefly with the earlier periods and more fully with the last two centuries, moving right to the present with a detailed coverage of the post-war novel and theatre. In the best sense eclectic, his book draws together history, criticism, established ideas and fresh views.

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