Read Faithful Unto Death by Caroline Graham Online


Fictional Novel, Mystery...

Title : Faithful Unto Death
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780312972950
Format Type : Mass Market Paperback
Number of Pages : 400 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Faithful Unto Death Reviews

  • Spuddie
    2019-01-04 22:15

    #5 DI Tom Barnaby British police procedural. Once again a small English village is the setting, as Alan Hollingsworth is found dead--at first believed to be of a suicide, his wife Simone having disappeared a few days previously, ostensibly to visit her sick mother, although her mother had been believed dead for many years. Then the thirty-year-old daughter of one of the Hollingsworth neighbors disappears, something totally out of character for her. DCI Barnaby and his Sergeant Troy begin investigating, gleaning information from all the nosy neighbors and trying to sift through to find the important bits. Was Alan done in by a former business partner that he'd swindled out of hundreds of thousands of dollars? Is the beautiful Simone's disappearance voluntary, or was she abducted? Neither were well-liked, but neither were they seemingly the types to incur strong hatred. Through many twists and turns, the mysteries are eventually solved, although not to Barnaby's satisfaction, as it's mostly speculation on his part. I did figure out the main part of the mystery about halfway through, but the hows and whys were a bit muddled til the end. Enjoyable, but perhaps a little TOO long and twisty.

  • Annabelle
    2019-01-10 22:10

    Graham is a good writer, flowery and descriptive but solid and interesting. She brings a small, parochial English village to life in quirky charm, and is particularly good at the flowers and botany. Her detective Barnaby and his assistant Sergeant Troy are also drawn in different molds than the standard rude but brilliant detective who has a sexually repressed female assistant as in P.D. James. The supposed crime is a missing bored, beautiful housewife isolated in the country by her workaholic, possessive husband. But soon he is dead, and a truly sexually repressed neighbor obsessed with the husband is dead, and the wife was supposedly kidnapped. There is an eccentric lesbian artist in the background. Branaby’s taste in cooking and his love for his opera singing wife is a little boring. But in general it is a satisfying mystery, where justice comes through karma, not necessarily through the law.

  • Jenn
    2019-01-08 20:08

    This Midsomer Murder was quite different than the episode on tv. And for once, I preferred the episode. There was more about the summer fete, Brenda was a much more interesting character who was creepier and died a much different death. Alan Hollingsworth, in the tv episode, was someone to despise. I don't rely like Troy in the books. He's a philandering woman chaser even with his baby and wife at home. And Barnaby is much more love able on tv. The novel character is much more flat and seems to have less to do with his family as a whole. And Kilmowski has a much bigger part in tv instead of having a fleeting cameo.

  • Sharla
    2019-01-07 19:10

    Just finished the fifth in Caroline Graham's Barnaby series. I love the setting and the way she makes the characters come to life. I know her books are generally given the "cozy" label but I'm not so sure that really fits. Pretty much all her books feature significant gory details, which make them more exciting and realistic than the average cozy. I'd seen the movie some years ago but had forgotten exactly how it ended so it was a surprise. Another good one from Caroline Graham.

  • Katherine Clark
    2019-01-21 22:22

    This is probably closer to 3 1/2, but I love this series so much, I'll push for higher number. It is another beautifully characterized British village mystery. My problem with it surprises me: it went on much too long. By being so long (and I have no problem with long books) it lost a great deal of the tension. IT felt as though it dragged. I'll happily start the next one though.

  • Katherine Spivey
    2019-01-06 21:17

    Some figures of pathos but the usual omniscient fitting twist

  • Cyd
    2019-01-03 19:08

    This is the first Chief Inspector Barnaby book I've read--quite enjoyable. I think the A&E Mystery Series did pretty well by the characters, though as usual the book is better. A good read.

  • Sarah
    2018-12-29 19:21

    One of my favourites of the series. Quite a bit different from the show but in a good way (in my opinion). Love these books!

  • Michael Quillin
    2019-01-16 00:23

    Nice English countryside mystery with a number of plot turns and interesting characters.

  • Linda
    2019-01-04 20:55

    Considerably longer that the previous four books in this series, I still enjoyed the twists and turns of this mystery. Yes, Graham does go overboard sometimes in her descriptions of who's wearing what. But to me that fleshes out the characters. Her portrayal of Barnaby and Troy make me feel as though I know them well, even though the TV characters are quite different. In this book, I, the reader, didn't really know the perpetrators, as was intended. I also enjoy the food descriptions and chuckle at Joyce's ineptness as a cook. Her use of British words is sometimes frustrating. The dictionary often doesn't help. Since I am married to a Brit, I can ask what such words mean. The solution to the crimes came as somewhat of a surprise to me, although enough clues were presented that I had some suspicion. Now I will do two things: watch this edition on Midsomer Murders/TV and I will get the next, 6th, of this series.

  • Karen
    2018-12-28 00:20

    I've been a fan of Midsomer Murders for years and years. My mom and I used to watch it -- she was an old devotee and when I would be home when I was in college we would sit and enjoy a good DCI Barnaby mystery together. I only recently realized, while revisiting them on Netflix, that they were based on books! I had to check it out at my local library. I was saddened to find that a.) there were no ebooks in my local electronic lending library and b.) of the books available at my local library I had seen the episodes for all but one of them (and recently), meaning I already knew the whole plot. A mystery is not quite as much fun that way. Fortunately, this one I hadn't seen.This book gave me the odd experience of being completely new and yet satisfyingly familiar all at the same time. Because I have watched so, so many episodes of Midsomer Murders the characters are like old friends. I love DCI Barnaby and reading about him was so pleasurable. It is a comfortable, familiar feeling. Having said that, the style of the novel itself was, if I may be so punny, novel. The thing I liked best (other than there were several bits of the mystery I hadn't pegged) was how incredibly British it was. The word choice, the diction, the figurative language were all so delightfully British. Phrases like, "Bring in the lemon drizzle!" and "prithee gadzookery" and so many excellent descriptions of Sgt. Troy (there was one in particular where she compared him to a shark but being not as nice as that animal that had me rolling). The plot was interesting, as well. There was plenty of that good ol' fashioned tiny town, bucolic nature to keep the old biddies (or me) satisfied and enough action and intrigue for the readers of more action-packed fare.The thing I liked the least? Troy. I never did like Troy in the show, either. My favorite is DS Jones (kind, not quite as quick as Barnaby, a try-hard if ever there was one, and eternally exasperated by Barnaby's whims and requests). Troy always seemed like an impulsive idiot. He wasn't even really a do-gooder. He was just lame. The Troy in this book was infinitely, infinitely worse. He was cruel, lascivious, arrogant, misogynistic, and spiteful. Just to name a few. At every turn I found myself sneering in disgust. I don't get the feeling that he was supposed to be remotely likable, but his whole character just loomed large and ugly over the proceedings in a way I didn't really need, thanks.Other than Sergeant "I'm a Disgusting Lech" Troy, I thoroughly enjoyed this book and might even go back for some of the others that I already know the plot to. Ha. Just for the thrill of something so British it is hardly matched even by the great British authors like Dickens and Austen. So British. So worth it. So fun. On to the next!

  • Simon Mcleish
    2018-12-28 17:56

    Originally published on my blog here in January 1999.In her Cotswold-set mysteries, Caroline Graham has great fun parading casts of bizarre exaggerated eccentrics before the eyes of Chief Inspector Barnaby and Sergeant Troy (themselves stereotypical policemen) and her readers. Faithful Unto Death follows the formula pretty exactly, with a puzzle which is perhaps a little above the average level of difficulty.When Alan Hutchinson's wife Simone goes missing, he at first does nothing about it, launching himself instead into a self-pitying sea of whisky. His neighbours eventually inform the police, but there is little they can do until Alan himself is found dead. Like almost all of Graham's stories, this one takes place in a tiny village entirely, it seems, populated by really strange people, and this includes the reclusive Hutchinsons.Having seen the TV adaptation of this novel before reading it, I wasn't expecting it to be terribly good. The "cast of eccentrics" idea works rather better on the page than on the screen, where there is a danger that they merely seem rather exaggerated (though the TV listings magazine we get implies, in what is said about the adaptation of a different Graham novel, that the series is very popular in the US, and some viewers there think it reliably catalogues English village life; it is about as reliable as Buffy's portrayal of American high school life). The compression of the novel into a single two-hour programme meant that the plot was considerably simplified and the characters made rather more sketchy; attention was inevitably focused on the star part, Barnaby (who was also considerably softened to make him more attractive to viewers). The book is far better, though I did find myself occasionally wondering how much some of the characterisations are deliberate parody and how much poor writing.

  • Sarah Echo
    2018-12-28 17:21

    This is, I believe, Caroline Graham’s fourth Chief Inspector Barnaby story, and I definitely think she has improved with time. The characters of Inspector Barnaby and his ultra-macho sidekick, Detective Sergeant Troy, are much better developed (if not a tad less likable) and the story has a much smoother flow. I knew how the story ended, having seen the Midsomer Murders TV adaptation multiple times, or so I thought. This book is full of subtleties, not only of human behavior, but also in the way the characters think and in the way the action is described. This is definitely a book that “shows” rather than “tells”. It was a great joy to read, and being a huge fan of the Midsomer Murders series, I am relieved to finally find a Chief Inspector Barnaby story that I enjoy.Both Barnaby and Troy are complex men, each in their own ways. Barnaby is a rule-breaker, an experienced detective who wears a million hats, from “favorite uncle” to the man no one wants to cross, all the while not caring one bit what people think of him. Troy, an alpha-male who thinks nothing of trying to get it on with any attractive woman who isn’t his wife, believes that tact is one thing that doesn’t belong anywhere near a crime scene. He is the character who is the hardest for me to like, especially given that I adore the Gavin Troy portrayed by Daniel Casey on Midsomer Murders. But being now privy to the inside machinations of his mind, I can also feel sympathy for him. They are a unique team, without whom, no crime in Midsomer County would ever be fully solved. I am definitely going to read the rest of the series!

  • Damaskcat
    2019-01-19 18:14

    Simone Hollingsworth fails to turn up for bell ringing practice and her husband says she has gone to visit her mother who is ill. But some of the villagers know that can’t be right because Simone’s mother died some years ago. Her husband seems to be behaving rather strangely too and when he is found dead Barnaby and Troy are sent to investigate what proves to be a very complex case.Village life with all its gold fish bowl qualities is very well described as are the villagers themselves. I failed to work out what was going on until Barnaby himself suddenly worked it out. The clues are there when you look back but most readers will miss them I think. I liked the characters and thought they were well done especially the colourful and eccentric Elfrida and her friend Cubby who both see more than most people.Troy and Barnaby are interesting characters themselves and their relationship is not always as smooth as it might be. Troy is a misogynist and fond of inappropriate jokes and comments which frequently annoy and disgust Tom Barnaby. I liked the glimpses the reader gets of Barnaby’s home life where his indigestion problems are less common since he took over the cooking.This is a well written book and a well written series where the characters are far from two dimensional and things don’t always work out perfectly. Motivations are well drawn and the reader feels some sympathy for the villains even though they are guilty. If you like your crime novels in the classic mould then give this series a try – they can be read in any order.

  • Bryn (Plus Others)
    2019-01-20 21:54

    Spoilers are for both the novel & the TV show.Well that was (view spoiler)[much, MUCH less cosy than the television version -- and also, strangely, much less progressive, in that the television show had Barnaby being very sympathetic to Sarah as a person who was in a tough position due to her queerness, before the big reveal in which we discover Sarah's complicity and then that Simone has been playing everyone -- and it worked well because Barnaby had accepted Sarah's version of the relationship, so Simone was playing him by extension. And then of course the show gives it a happy ending. Whereas in the novel, Gray is actually quite a nice guy, Sarah is going to starve herself to death, and Simone just gets away with it all. It was very effective but not what I was expecting, so honestly I'm not sure what I think about it. I did really, really like the way Barnaby is able to just let it go in the end, while Troy is profoundly shaken -- Barnaby learned a long time ago to put his failures aside so he can keep having a satisfactory life, while Troy has always been so smugly certain he's right about everything and everyone. I am curious to read the next one and see if she let Troy grow up some.(hide spoiler)]

  • Lynn
    2018-12-30 23:57

    This is only the second in the series I have read, because I watched the others in their TV versions. I was shocked how nasty and snobbish both inspectors seem. Also, the author seems preoccupied with the attractiveness of female characters, making their extreme ugliness or beauty a part of the actual psychology of the characters (and making ugly women the butt of sneering jokes on multiple occasions.) The mystery story was OK, although somewhat predictable, with similarities to Leave HEr To Heaven/Gone Girl.Another surprise in this book for me was that I had quite a hard time understanding the writing, especially the dialog. I think this was partly due to the use of Britishisms and partly a tendency to use brand names for objects instead of naming them (maybe this is a Britishism itself?). For instance, a woman's mustache is said to be as bristly as an Oral-B. Aside from, again, being somewhat offended at the need to mock women with unfeminine or ugly features, I can't help thinking there is no reason to say "Oral-B" instead of "toothbrush," and that in fact, toothbrush sounds better/funnier. I do not think I will be reading anymore of this author.

  • AngryGreyCat
    2019-01-15 01:23

    I picked up this at the library, as I am close to finishing the Chief Inspector Barnaby series, in books anyway. The TV show, Midsomer Murders is much longer. I vaguely remember the episode based off of this book but that didn’t detract from reading the book at all. Chief Inspector Barnaby and his sidekick Troy have a good working relationship, even if Troy gets fustrated at times. The mystery revolves around a missing woman with a husband who is acting in a peculiar manner and gives a reason for his wife’s absence that doesn’t seem right. A death occures and C.I. Barnaby finds himself and Troy, in the middle of what had begun as a missing persons case but had evolved into murder? suicide? An extremely manipulative antagonist leads the reader through red herrings and mis cues until Barnaby solves the entire case. Well written and engaging, this is a series well worth reading even if you have watched the TV show.

  • Lynn
    2018-12-22 18:23

    Graham's books are always great fun, and this is no exception. Her characters crackle and her prose is so funny: not expected from a murder mystery, but all the more welcome.As usual, all of the suspects seem very guilty indeed. Then they are cleared, and the most surprising one is left. This one (no spoilers here) was very surprising indeed, and the methods of committing the crimes also were a bit shocking. The culprit is completely without guilt--so completely, in fact, that the person seems rather psychotic. I really dislike psychotic killers because psychosis excuses the author from providing real motives. This one, though, is very clever indeed, and the ending is very surprising. I'm not sure I was happy with it because I prefer neat justice done, but life is like this, too, I guess.

  • Saundra Pitt
    2019-01-01 21:55

    I am a HUGE fan of the Midsomer Murders TV show which is based off these books. And I have read one of the other Caroline Graham books-- which I really enjoyed. I listened to this audiobook, and didn't enjoy it as much as the other CG book I read. Maybe these books are just better when read?I am also not a fan of the character of Det. Troy in this book. I realize characters are changed when TV shows are made from stories-- and I am GLAD that Gavin Troy's was changed for the show. His character in the book is rather despicable. I still look forward to reading more of these stories-- but I think from now on I will READ them, and not listen. That being said, the narrator was fine. That is not the reason I didn't especially LOVE the book.

  • J.R.
    2019-01-13 20:24

    When docile Simone Hollingsworth disappears her controlling husband soon assumes the guise of villain. But all is not as it seems in the placid village of Fawcett Green.Detective Chief Inspector Barnaby and his bag carrier Sergeant Troy have come up against one of the cleverest criminals yet devised by author Caroline Graham and the novel has more twists and turns than a country road.Graham is noted for character-driven novels with intricate plots and wry humor. This one has its share of eccentric village denizens, enough suspense to keep one turning the pages and a conclusion that’s annoying yet totally plausible.

  • Vanessa Tan
    2019-01-05 01:00

    Having enjoyed the inaugural TV episode on Badger's Drift, I decided to read one of Caroline Graham's books on the same series. In written form, nuances and witty descriptions are easier to lay out than on television, but after the first two thirds of the book I found myself skimming and wanting to get to the conclusion. As with well thought-through crime novels, the ending was not exactly what I had expected - or hoped. Nothing was totally black or white. However it is probably more realistic this way.

  • Jan
    2019-01-11 19:06

    Starting this series with the British television series of Midsomer Murders, I hadn't expected that the books would be quite a bit more dense and that Barnaby would be ever so much more prickly and Troy so peevish and lecherous. Really, I should have known! Of course, the book was more skillful and perceptive.

  • Sheila Beaumont
    2019-01-17 01:12

    I've just thoroughly enjoyed rereading this witty, complex, rather satirical village mystery by Caroline Graham. Like all the other books in this series, this one gives us wonderful character portrayals that delve beneath the facade of the conventional, apparently placid surface of village life.Now I'm going to watch the corresponding TV episode of "Midsomer Murders." The four adaptations I've watched so far have been very well done, and I especially liked John Nettles' portrayal of the introspective, culinarily talented Chief Inspector Barnaby.

  • Nikki
    2018-12-21 21:03

    If you're familiar with the "Midsomer Murders" series from British tv, you may have seen the dramatization of this book. Apparently Graham wrote several Inspector Barnaby mysteries and the first season or so of the series took care of them, then subsequent episodes were written solely for TV. Anyway, this was a nice British police procedural in the same vein as Ruth Rendell's Wexford books; the plot had some very nice twists to it.

  • Chi Dubinski
    2019-01-01 21:57

    Bored housewife Simone Hollingsworth disappears one day, last seen on a bus out of town. No one in the village seems concerned, except her neighbor, old Mrs. Molfrey.Her workaholic, unsocial husband tells the police she has gone to visit her sick mother.But her mother is dead. What is the husband hiding? Barnaby and Troy investigate. The books are different from the Midsomer Murders series on PBS--not quite so cozy.

  • Caroline
    2019-01-18 21:24

    I love this series of books featuring D.I Tom Barnaby and D.S Gavin Troy. Set in sleepy, picturesque villages where everyone knows everyone's business and murder and skullduggery are the order of the day.I dislike the book version of Sergeant Troy, who comes across as vain and arrogant, the polar opposite of the TV character."Faithful unto Death" is a well written, suspenseful tale that kept me guessing to the very end.

  • Jenn
    2019-01-21 23:59

    Pretty fun read! I used to hate mysteries, but then got hooked on the Inspector Morse books so started searching out like books! Barnaby is no Morse and Troy is certainly no Lewis, but theyre an interesting pair. The small town setting is neat too! This is the first one I've read of the series, and I quite liked it- the mystery wasn't obvious, to me at least! Will be looking for more of the books!

  • Lesley
    2019-01-14 18:57

    Another great mystery by Caroline Graham. While complicated like all her other stories, I found this one a bit easier to follow. I also really enjoyed the character development of Troy and Barnaby (a much darker depection than the tv series). Furthermore I enjoyed how the story did not have the typical "tidy" ending.

  • Weisser
    2019-01-11 01:02

    Another small town riddled with gossip, infidelity, embezzlement, and murder. It appears the entire town has kidnapped the wife of the embezzler in order to get their money back, but then, how did he get himself murdered? A lot of plot twists and twisted plotters. Another well written Inspector Barnaby!

  • Katie Bee
    2018-12-25 19:58

    I didn't like this one. On the whole, the series is worse than the TV series, thanks in large part to the flatter and less likeable characterizations of the recurring characters (Barnaby & Troy, definitely, but also Joyce, Cully, etc.) This book is the least appealing of the lot (that I've read so far), though. Every character is unpleasant.