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At Bertram's Hotel : a Miss Marple mystery
Agatha Christie
Adult Fiction CHRISTI

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From Library Journal:

At Bertram's Hotel, the guests enjoy sumptuous, late afternoon teas, the rosy-faced chambermaids wear real caps, and the doorman is always happy to assist an elderly person into a taxi. Miss Jane Marple, down from the country for a short visit, finds the Edwardian atmosphere both pleasant and disturbing. How can the hotel owners afford to provide such luxurious service at such low rates? When absentminded old Canon Pennyfather disappears and the doorman is killed, Miss Marple, amateur detective extraordinaire, assists the police to find the truth. Christie is best known for her upper-class English mysteries; here she directly confronts (and spoofs) the radical class and lifestyle shifts that took place in England during her own long life. Rosemary Leach is a highly competent narrator, with a clear yet unobtrusive reading style. Recommended for all but the smallest recreational audiobook collections. In The Mirror Crack'd, change has arrived at St. Mary's Mead. There is a new housing development, a gleaming new supermarket on the high street, and the manor house that used to belong to Colonel and Mrs. Bantry has been sold to famous movie actress Marina Gregg. Heather Babcock is a plain housewife who lives in the new development. At a housewarming event for the remodeled mansion, Marina passes Heather a cocktail, and a few minutes later, Heather is dead. Police inspector Craddock is called to investigate and immediately consults local spinster and amateur sleuth Jane Marple. Of course, after suitable diversions, she solves the case. Fortunately there is more to this book than a somewhat simplistic plot-it is a gentle exploration of societal changes in mid-20th-century England. Relationships between classes, shopping habits, even clothing are in flux. Wisely, Miss Marple (and presumably Christie) recognizes that though change can be good or bad, it is always interesting. Leach has a beautiful, clear voice, individual characters are well differentiated, and linking text is unobtrusive. Not one of the author's best novels but recommended for moderate to large collections.-I. Pour-El, Des Moines Area Community Coll., Boone, IA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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main characters Jane Marple
Female
Age: Elderly
Spinster
Enjoys knitting; vacationing in London at the Bertram Hotel, a hotel that never seems to change with time.



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