Meet the Matthews…before the next one dies.

Behold Here's PoisonTitle: Behold, Here’s Poison
Author: Georgette Heyer
Genre: Murder Mystery
Publication Date: 1936
Purchase Price: $14.00 (paperback)

When Gregory Matthews, Master of the Poplars, is found dead in his bed, it sends the Matthews family into a tizzy. And when the cause of death is determined to be foul play, it’s up to the unflappable Inspector Hannasyde to uncover a murderer. Was it Randall Matthews, who stands to inherit the Poplars? Or could it be Stella Matthews, who is engaged to a man her uncle despised?

Chapter by chapter the suspect list grows — for although each character has a motive, none of them has an alibi.

Some quick thoughts

My first taste of Georgette Heyer came in the form of The Masqueraders. Heyer was a very prolific writer, so I had lots of options when it came to choosing another book.

I love a good mystery, but I just couldn’t enjoy it as much as I want to.

The main issue, I think, was that all the characters blended together. Most of them have the same last name, and they all have similarly high-strung and over-reactive personalities. There’s also no real physical descriptions of anyone, so everyone other than three or four of the characters becomes a blur. This makes it hard to follow conversations, and so I couldn’t get into the story.

Still worth reading

Despite the character confusion, I did enjoy Behold, Here’s Poison. The plot twists were surprising and intriguing, and the “who dunnit” was unexpected.

If you’re looking for a good mystery to read on a long plane ride, consider checking out Behold, Here’s Poison.

Kick-ass Quotes:

” ‘Well, no one need think that I am in any way surprised, for I am not. Gregory never showed the faintest consideration for anyone during his lifetime, and it would be idle to suppose that he would change in death.’ ” (p. 55)

What’s a book that you thought would be good, but ended up being kind of blah?

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6 Responses

  1. Mouseprints March 30, 2011 / 5:28 pm

    While I love Heyer’s historical fiction, I’ve found the few murder mysteries of hers that I’ve read to be rather bland.
    I love that featured cover, ‘though. So saucy!

    • bookzilla March 30, 2011 / 7:34 pm

      I’m glad I’m not the only one. :) I kept trying to justify my feelings of bleh by saying, “Well, I don’t really like mysteries or murder mysteries,” but that’s just not true. I love a good mystery! I mentioned a couple things in the review that I think contributed to my not enjoying the story as much as I wanted, but I still can’t really put my finger on the exact reason.

      It is a fabulous cover, isn’t it? Whoever picked it, picked a good one. I just wish that the story inside had been as awesome.

  2. Gypsi March 30, 2011 / 10:09 pm

    Her mysteries are really not all that good; they were just “bread on the table” books, quickly produced to bring in money. Her considerable talent went into her Regency novels.

    • bookzilla March 31, 2011 / 7:19 pm

      I didn’t know that about Heyer, although I’m not really surprised: there’s a big history of that sort of thing.

      Her talent is indeed considerable, and I’ll definitely be checking out more of her Regency novels. Any particular recommendations for me?

      • Gypsi April 1, 2011 / 3:22 pm

        The Corinthian has always been one of my favorites, but it’s been years since I’ve read it, so I can’t remember why. Wit, I’m sure. Lady of Quality is another one I really enjoyed, above the rest. A Civil Contract is probably my absolute favorite, but it is more serious than her others, and has a different tone, not as light hearted.

    • bookzilla April 2, 2011 / 10:00 am

      Thanks for the recommendations, Gypsi. Heyer’s got a lot of books, and it’s nice to know someone who can give me a good starting place.

      I’m probably going to go to the bookstore this weekend, so I’ll see if any of those is available. I also got The Grand Sophy as a Christmas gift, but I think it’s another mystery, so it’s not really high on my list of priorities. Have a great weekend!

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