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A Most Contagious Game (Rue Morgue Classic British Mysteries) [Paperback]

By Catherine Aird, Tom Schantz (Introduction by) & Enid Schantz (Introduction by)
Our Price $ 12.71  
Retail Value $ 14.95  
You Save $ 2.24  (15%)  
Item Number 360977  
Buy New $12.71

Item Specifications...

Pages   159
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 0.5" Width: 6" Height: 9"
Weight:   0.58 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Feb 28, 2007
Publisher   Rue Morgue Press
ISBN  1601870027  
EAN  9781601870025  

Availability  12 units.
Availability accurate as of Oct 22, 2016 12:12.
Usually ships within one to two business days from La Vergne, TN.
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Rue Morgue Classic British Mysteries - Full Series Preview
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  A Most Contagious Game (Rue Morgue Classic British Mysteries)   $ 12.71   In Stock  

Item Description...
When a London businessman retires early and buys a Tudor mansion, he's quite surprised--and perhaps even a little pleased (retirement being pretty boring)--to find a skeleton hidden in a secret room in the house. The skeleton appears to be more than a 150 years old, so the local police leave it to the homeowner to solve the mystery. The police are much more interested in solving a local, modern murder. Somehow the two deaths are connected. First published in 1967, this is Aird's only non-Inspector Sloan mystery and a complete triumph.

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More About Catherine Aird, Tom Schantz & Enid Schantz

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CATHERINE AIRD is the author of over twenty Sloan and Crosby mysteries. She lives in England.

Catherine Aird currently resides in Canterbury. Catherine Aird was born in 1930.

Catherine Aird has published or released items in the following series...

  1. Rue Morgue Classic British Mysteries

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Product Categories
1Books > Subjects > Mystery & Thrillers > General   [14854  similar products]
2Books > Subjects > Mystery & Thrillers > Mystery > British Detectives   [950  similar products]
3Books > Subjects > Mystery & Thrillers > Mystery > General   [9292  similar products]

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
Wonderful mystery tale  Jan 27, 2008
If you like Josephine Tey Daughter of Time or historical mysteries, you will love this book.
An experiment that doesn't quite come off  Aug 23, 2007
I'm a big fan of Catherine Aird's series of books featuring Insp C D Sloan. So I was interested to try out this non-series book. The structure of having two parallel cases, one in the past and one in the present, has been tried more or less successfully by several writers. It's tricky, and I admire Ms Aird for attempting it. Unfortunately, I am disappointed in the results. (I guess Ms Aird was also; it's been only series books from then on.)

As in the series books, we get good characters, a sustainable plot, and a hefty dose of humor. The solution of the 150 year-old murder develops nicely step by step. The solution of the present-day murder is awkward. We really don't get much information at all except that the prime suspect (who is evading the police) knows who the real killer is; and then the trapping of the real murderer and explanation of the motive come in a rush.

Decent mystery..Aird scores here..  May 26, 2004
"The Most Contagious Game" is a stand alone novel by Catherine Aird. It follows a retired man who finds a skeleton while trying to have his home rewired. It seems the skeleton is about 150 years old, and so the police don't care who the murderer is, but our hero, Tom does. Soon, he is able to piece together the motive for the killing, and so discovers the killer. In the meantime, the police are trying to solve a modern murder, with the suspect in hiding. The two mysteries intwine, and so our hero helps to solve two crimes. Good book, with solid information about priest holes, and such.
Catherine Aird is Great!  Jul 4, 2003
It's been awhile since I read a book written by Catherine Aird and I'd forgotten how great she is. Any true lover of mysteries cannot say their reading experiences are complete without at least reading some of Ms. Aird's works of art. This book is no different. I was expecting an addition the the Inspector Sloane series, but this book does not include him. Instead it is about a retired, semi-invalid businessman who had just moved to Easterbrook with his wife. They had purchased the old manor house. He soon discovers that the old house has many secrets, not the least of which is a one hundered and fifty year old skeleton in a Priest's hideout (left over from the Elizabethan age when practicing Catholicism was bad for the health). Thomas Hardy is the businessman and the new owner of the manor house and he sets out to try to solve the old murder. We are also treated to another story string - a more recent murder of one of the village residents. Hardy gets inadvertantly involved in solving that one too. Although this summarizes the storyline it does not do justice to Ms. Aird's incredible craftsmanship and her poetic style of writing. I am so glad that I've decided to read her again.
Where a skeleton in the cupboard isn't a figure of speech  Apr 15, 2002
It is in truth a most contagious game;
Hiding the Skeleton shall be its name.
- _Modern Love_, George Meredith

Thomas Harding always wanted to own a really old English country house, but he wanted to find it and fix it up himself. Alas, his working habits have brought him not only the money to buy the house, but a coronary thrombosis at 52; when his doctor caught him giving dictation from his bed, Dora Harding had to choose their retirement home without a lot of notice.

Easterbrook Manor in Calleshire, though, has some features the land agents never knew about. While getting the wiring in the drawing room fixed, Thomas figures out that there's Tudor panelling behind the ugly plaster, and a priest's hole behind that. The biggest shock, though, was the skeleton in the plastered-over room. Since it's more than a hundred years old, the Calleshire force (not Inspector Sloan of Berebury, incidentally) aren't officially interested. (They have the murder of a young blonde last week from the church choir to worry about, anyway.) Suddenly Thomas isn't bored at all with country life, and this time Dora can join him in his work.

The Calleshire police, usually represented by Inspector C.D. Sloan, have very little part to play. We're treated to a lot of English village characters from Thomas (ex-City gent)'s point of view. (His reaction to the rector's description of the parish's investments that maintain their charities is really good, especially when his half-hearted protest at being asked to be treasurer is met with a description of the old codger who used to do it.) We're also gently educated on the realities of a priest's life in Tudor England, and the atmosphere of the Napoleonic Wars countryside in which the murder took place. (No flashbacks, just a great storyteller's talent for conveying atmosphere).


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