[PDF/EPUB] Off with His Head BY Ngaio Marsh


10 thoughts on “Off with His Head

  1. says:

    I am in the midst of a job change therefore not feeling up to reading anything heavy Fortunately I was able to pick up a few mysteries the old fashioned English ones where the murder takes place at a country mansion and everyone including the police treat it as a sort of intellectual puzzle rather than the gory

  2. says:

    In this 19th book in the 'Roderick Alleyn' series the British detective investigates the death of a folk dancer The book can be read as a standaloneIn the English village of South Mardian the winter solstice is marked by a complex rit

  3. says:

    An entertaining read Morris dancing with a twistAnnually in the depths of winter in a remote English village the Dance of the five sons is performed on Sword Wednesday during the Winter Solstice It has been performed for hundreds of years The key characters in the dance are The Fool The Hobbyhorse and The teaser called BettyMrs Bunz an ecc

  4. says:

    This is the nineteenth Roderick Alleyn novel in what is a slightly infuriating series If any author could be called inconsistent – often brilliant but too often banal then Marsh is that author Some of her mysteries are fa

  5. says:

    My favourite Ngaio Marsh story is the one that does not involve the theatre or New Zealand Death of a Fool is set in a snowy English village holding out against the 20th century It could easily be silly but Ngaio Marsh is far too good a writer to slip into that error The story has a village smithy a mediæval folk dance eccentric ge

  6. says:

    Just ok 2 stars on my personal scale I listened to this one on Audible and although Nadia May is usually a favorite narrator the rural accents of some characters were almost unintelligible and the constant descriptions of folk dances didn’t make sense I don’t know if reading the book would’ve helped me to make sens

  7. says:

    Ngaio Marsh in the second of her mysteries I have read shows herself to be a master of human observation Marsh combines that with the ability

  8. says:

    Part of the enjoyment of this book was not only the excellent descriptions but the historical information regarding some of the ancient English folk dances and traditions occurring around the Christmas seasoning Marsh also presents material that would suggest that Shakespeare incorporated some of the folk themes in his King Lear Marsh's knowledge of theatre was also very helpful

  9. says:

    Set in 1950s Britain an annual ritual dance held on the winter solstice The winter solstice is nearing and Sout

  10. says:

    At this point in my rereading of Marsh I realize that I am having trouble seeing the books as they were received when first written and published This particular story bothered me particularly for a number of reasonsFirst Marsh's books conti

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Summary Ñ eBook, ePUB or Kindle PDF ☆ Ngaio Marsh

Off with His Head

A ritual dance becomes a murderous mamboAt the winter solstice South Mardian's swordsmen weave their blades in an ancient ritual dance But for one of them th. In this 19th book in the Roderick Alleyn series the British detective investigates the death of a folk dancer The book can be read as a standaloneIn the English village of South Mardian the winter solstice is marked by a complex ritual dance performed solely by men This year not long after WW II the major participants in the dance are the local smithy and his four sons who have a long ancestry in the area a village doctor a parson s sonlawyer and a former army officerThe story acted out in the dance is described as resembling King Lear because it involves children in this case sons at odds with their old father The superstitious ritual includes donning elaborate costumes and dancing reciting jingling chasing girls and brandishing swords Toward the latter part of the ritual one of the sons beheads the father who sinks out of sight behind a boulder Then at the dramtic climax the father is supposed to come back to life and jump up from behind the rock This time however the father doesn t pop up It turns out he s actually been beheaded The entire village is on hand to watch the ritual dance including an overbearing dowager and her eccentric niece a sexy barmaid a pretty young acting student etc Also present is a German visitor a woman who studies and writes about English folklorefolk dances The lady is regarded with suspicion by some villagers both because she s German and a woman When Detective Roderick Alleyn shows up to investigate the murder he asks each dance participant and a number of observers to describe in excruciating detail all aspects of the dance Every witness claims that no one went near the boulder shielding the old man between the time he was beheaded in the dance and the time he was supposed to rise up againThe uestioning of witnesses takes up a large part of the book and is exceedingly repetitive and tedious Moreover since I didn t actually see the dance and am not familiar with British folk dancing the descriptions were difficult to follow And finally when the murderer and modus operandi were exposed I couldn t picture it and it didn t make sense In the time covered by the story various other things are going on in South Mardian There s a Romeo and Juliet type romance the relatives don t approve the German woman acts peculiar and fears the police there s pressure on a couple to marry against their wishes because they were seen canoodling in the forest a product of those conservative times the smithy and his sons have real life arguments etc The characters however are not well fleshed out and not terribly interesting This is not one of Ngaio Marsh s best books It seems like a book about British folk dancing than a mystery I wouldn t recommend itYou can follow my reviews at

Review Off with His Head

E excitement proves too heady and his decapitiation turns the fertility rite into a pageant of death Now Inspector Roderick Alleyn must penetrate not only th. Just ok 2 stars on my personal scale I listened to this one on Audible and although Nadia May is usually a favorite narrator the rural accents of some characters were almost unintelligible and the constant descriptions of folk dances didn t make sense I don t know if reading the book would ve helped me to make sense or be interestedI found it interesting once the murder occurred during a performance of a folk dance and Inspector Alleyn and crew arrived to investigate Then i5 became rather obvious who the killer was and I skimmed the last few chapters to the end Some interesting characters but this one really didn t hold my interest

Summary Ñ eBook, ePUB or Kindle PDF ☆ Ngaio Marsh

E mysteries of folklore but the secrets and sins of an eccentric group who include a surly blacksmith a domineering dowager and a not so simple village idiot. Part of the enjoyment of this book was not only the excellent descriptions but the historical information regarding some of the ancient English folk dances and traditions occurring around the Christmas seasoning Marsh also presents material that would suggest that Shakespeare incorporated some of the folk themes in his King Lear Marsh s knowledge of theatre was also very helpful

  • Paperback
  • 288
  • Off with His Head
  • Ngaio Marsh
  • English
  • 14 August 2018
  • 9780312968328