Read A Nice Class of Corpse by Simon Brett Online


Brett introduces Melita Pargeter, his newest detective. Melita is a rich and vivacious widow whose mystery-solving talents come in handy when a murderer stalks a hotel for retirees....

Title : A Nice Class of Corpse
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780684186856
Format Type : Unknown Binding
Number of Pages : 221 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

A Nice Class of Corpse Reviews

  • Rachel
    2019-01-29 18:54

    I'm glad this wasn't the first Mrs. Pargeter mystery I read. It doesn't have near the amount of charm later books in the series do. I would recommend instead starting with "Mrs, Presumed Dead" or "Mrs. Pargeter's Package." Both are lovely. Then, once you've become fond of her, come back to this. It's still a good read, but not near as remarkable as the others I've read.

  • Orinoco Womble (tidy bag and all)
    2019-02-08 22:35

    Knowing Simon Brett's name from BBC Radio 4 plays etc, I must admit I expected something more from this novel, series installment though it is. While the writing is decent (no grammatical howlers, at least)the book reads like an attempt to remake "The Murder of Roger Ackroyd". The premise is antiquated without being a "period cosy." We have all the elements of a Marpelite mystery: genteel "hotel" (ie retirement home), constant reading of the Times and changing of clothes, jewelry left about with abandon, rigid regime, rivalry over rooms etc. But it just doesn't ring true. The social conventions upheld by the matron--oh, excuse me, owner and manageress--are too old-fashioned even for aging members of the Established Orders. Published in 1988, so the majority of the inmates--sorry, paying guests--of the hotel would have been far too young to have practiced all the niceties so common in the 1930s world of Christie and Co. Adding Coronation Street, Perrier water and soft porn videos into the mix just made it that much more jarring.I also found the use of the diary entries right from page one to be annoying and unnecessary. The style of the diary is so laboured as to be laughable, and the ending is just too convenient for words. As the author himself suggests at one point, they really should have just left him (and by "him" I mean the writer) in the library with a stiff brandy and soda to hand and a revolver in the drawer. I'm usually able to read and enjoy just about anything light during a night of insomnia, but this book left me feeling impatient, frustrated and annoyed that I'd spent the three scant hours it took to read on it.Having glanced at a few reviews here, I see that many readers feel this is not Mr Brett's finest output for the Pargeter novels. Let's hope for better luck next time.

  • Bettie☯
    2019-02-17 18:42

    (view spoiler)[Bettie's BooksThe shelving and star rating exhibit my thoughts on this book. (hide spoiler)]

  • Sophie
    2019-02-03 14:46

    A nicely constructed mystery. I was kept guessing until the end, and enjoyed spending time with the protagonist, Mrs. Pargeter. I appreciate how the author never tells us exactly what the late Mr. Pargeter did for a living, but manages to give a fairly complete picture. I'm not big on reading series, but I might be tempted to pick up the next Mrs. Pargeter novel, just to see if the author can match the quality of this one.

  • John Frankham
    2019-02-12 20:47

    What an accomplished writer Simon Brett is, in his detective fiction genre. Modern day, wry, cynical, knowing but humane. A few duds within the successes, of course. Not here. This is the first starring a 67 year old widow with a dubious (near criminal) past, who moves into a seaside residential hotel where the inmates start dropping like flies. She uses her experience to get on the trail of the murderer. Great fun.

  • L.T. Fawkes
    2019-01-29 22:34

    $5.79 *** on KindleClassic British cozy. When Mrs. Pargeter retires to the Devereux, a residential hotel for upper class elderly, the guests begin to die mysteriously. Who's killing the guests? Who is Mrs. Pargeter? And just what was her late husband's profession? Fun, humorous. First book of a series.

  • Ashley Lambert-Maberly
    2019-01-29 20:49

    A perfectly adequate book, but not particularly lovable. Mrs. Pargeter is a bit hard to believe--I suppose there must be widows of criminals out there, but I don't think they'd be a bit like her. None of the other supporting cast were terribly interesting or well-realised, and the motives/psychology of the murderer seemed awfully suspect. There was a bit of an interesting twist at the very, very end, but not enough to up the score to three. Bland? Yes, I suppose that's the word. Bland. It should have been fun! The premise promises fun, some modern day Snoop Sister, but no, it just sort of lay there for me.(Note: 5 stars = rare and amazing, 4 = quite good book, 3 = a decent read, 2 = disappointing, 1 = awful, just awful. There are a lot of 4s and 3s in the world!)

  • cg
    2019-02-15 14:49

    I loved it. I have read Simon Brett before, but not the Mrs Pargeter series. This was his first book in the series, and some did not care for it but I did! Loved the constant referral to "Mr. Pargeter suggestions" and the array of people he had previously arranged to look out for his wife after his demise. She's quite a character, and it was an easy and quick read.

  • Regan
    2019-01-28 15:59

    Totally super read! I loved Mrs. Pargeter. Brett has some totally fun characters, a mystery that keeps you turning pages so you don't want to put it down till it's done. Definitely an auto buy series.

  • Karen
    2019-02-17 22:46

    I'm starting to see why Simon Brett is considered a good writer -- starting. I'd like to find more books in this series before I decided if I like Mrs. Pargeter (and Simon Brett).

  • Laurie
    2019-02-08 15:32

    First in the Mrs. Pargeter series. Amusing, well-written, though I don't think the author holds to the Detection Club standards. I might read another some time.

  • Imjussayin
    2019-01-28 17:43

    A Nice Class of Corpse: Mrs Pargeter Series Book 1Four stars for a novel sleuth.Mrs Pargeter is the widow of the late Mr Pargeter, who left her well off. Mrs P is not upper class, but she is respectable. Mrs P also inherited his little black book [LBB]. Mr Pargeter kept his business below the radar. Whenever Mrs Pargeter has an inquiry, she uses the LBB to contact the best criminals people with the relevant expertise for help. Somebody is on their last legs, and before they die, the want a few thrills: like committing murder! The villain make's a mistake when he or she sets their murderous intentions on Melita Pargeter.I like this modern take on a senior amateur sleuth. Mrs P is a fascinating character. She has a strong moral code and a love for her late husband but she is not ready to retire from life. I will follow this series because I think it has potential. The quality of the writing is good. The plot is interesting, and I like the diary entry approach for the murder's input. It is an entertaining light read that I would recommend.Connect with me on Twitter: RatingSexual Content: ULanguage: UViolent: URead the next one or reread : YesMy rating system (* = star)0* Could not finish this book (waste of time)1* Finished the book but didn't like it.2* Finished the book it was okay.3* A good read worth your time.4* An excellent read often with a novel concept or unusual plot.5* A magnificent read. A prominent example of the genre.

  • Beverly
    2019-02-13 14:57

    Being an old, retired lady, there's nothing I like more than to read about an older lady who's taking an interest in solving crimes. This was a great read, for my Mystery book club this month, with just that type of lady. Melita Pargeter is a widow who moves into the Devereux Hotel. She is the newest resident among a number of other retired folks who want to live out their lives in this respectable establishment near the sea. Her husband was obviously the love of her life but her memories make you wonder just exactly how "legal" his enterprises were. Nonetheless, he has left her well taken care of, with not only financial security but among other things a set of skeleton keys, binoculars and a long barrel gun that just fits in her handbag. During her very first night at the hotel, one of the residents ends up dead at the bottom of the stairs. Within days it's discovered that the deceased resident's jewelry was stolen and then another resident dies. Mrs. Pargeter takes an immediate interest in what's occurring and soon discovers she may actually be in danger herself. Just a great cozy read with a cast of great quirky characters. I think I actually suspected everyone at least once during the book. I'm anxious to read more of this series.

  • Ellen
    2019-01-22 18:32

    Cozy little English mystery. Mrs. Pargeter is a very wealthy elderly widow who moves into a seaside residential hotel. Mrs. Pargeter is the widow of a man who is described as being in the "Upper echelon of criminals". I get the impression Mr. Pargeter was a very successful thief and con artist, and many of his skills that she learned are used in her investigation. From the beginning she suspects murder although the doctor, police and the other residents think that these deaths are accidental. It's a bit of a stretch when one of the victims is supposedly smothered in her sleep but when the pillow is removed, the victim's eyes are open. The murderer is a diarist who's slowly dying although they ( won't give away whether this person is a he or she) don't look ill to the other residents. Periodically this person's writings are revealed and the reader discovers that this person wants a bit of a thrill before their demise. Three residents are murdered and an attempt is made on Mrs. Pargeter's life. Fun, quick read and full of surprises.

  • Jeanette
    2019-02-07 22:44

    Lovely little cozy series that I had never read in its debut or follow ups, and I start now with #1. And it was a delight to enjoy an easy read between much harder fare. My TBR list is chock full of war related, era, or aftermath tomes and I just can't do those back to back. This one was pure entertainment. We are introduced to the widow Mrs. Pargeter and the proper set English village life she has chosen in her 67th year. It was rather like a "closed" room mystery plot of Christie's- as all the suspects had to be those people residing within a boarding house with locked and alarm set doors.It was nearly a 4 star for the tongue in cheek and clear descriptive characterizations, but I didn't get much depth in Mrs. Pargeter herself yet- just the onus of her past and current situation. But at least a 3.5 star to be more exact. The writing clearness and crisp sentences are full 4 star plus. This left me hungry for more though- absolutely.

  • Elizabeth
    2019-01-30 15:48

    In a search for a modern Miss Marple, Simon Brett has introduced a promising lady detective in the form of Mrs. Melita Pargeter. I selected this book at random from the Boston Athenaeum because I thought the title held promise and I was not disappointed. The author is a little more tongue in cheek about the extraordinary circumstance of murders talking place left and right - which gave it more humor than a comparable Miss Marple. The plot was also very well developed and kept me interested, but in true cozy mystery fashion, there was nothing grisly or disturbing (other than the bodies - of course). This is the first in a series that started in the 1980s and I look forward to reading the next book.

  • Kimberly Ann
    2019-01-26 16:54

    I didn't Not Like It I was more like OK.Mrs. Pargeter has moved into a Resident Hotel for people of "Class" who happen to conform to the owner's sense of propriety...Of course Mrs. Pargeter doesn't fit in, nor does she try to. In fact she does her best to make herself comfortable in her own manner. Two residents are murdered, one of whom has her jewels replaced with fakes. The murder keeps a diary.....This book was a disappointment tome because it lacked the usual cast of characters that I have come to like so well...really they are what makes the series successful, not Mrs. Pargeter. To me she'd be just another Nosey Parker without the others.

  • Kate
    2019-02-03 16:47

    Malita Pargeter is an amusing and refreshing opposite to the stereotypical little old lady amateur detective. She's rich, earthy, curious and she comes equipped with help from every conceivable member of the non-law abiding public -- complimenhts of her late, adored husband. It was somewhat of a mystery to me why a lady withy unlimited means would chose to live in a retirement home, but perhaps she just felt the need of others in her age set to talk to. She certainly got to do a lot of that, as her method of solving the murder was to talk to all the other residents, a la Miss Marple and Miss Silver. I guess such a tried and true method isn't to be abandoned lightly!

  • Beckiezra
    2019-02-11 21:01

    2.5 All the English formality without any of the excitement since it was set in a retirement home full of people waiting to die. I'm almost angry now that it's done. The author annoyingly didn't reveal anything about the main character past/husband so I'm left assuming he was a criminal of some sort but it could be he was a secret agent or something. I'll never find out because I don't expect I'll be reading any more of these books. I didn't figure out the murderer which usually is a sign of a good mystery to me, but I didn't care enough about any of the characters to feel much emotional connection to what was happening.

  • Amy Bradley
    2019-01-25 22:41

    Interesting mystery, told in the diary entries of a murderer and the actual story, where Mrs. Pargeter, a 67-year old widow newly arrived at a private retirement home, investigates the murders.Interesting in that I had several suspicions as to the murderer throughout the story, but was wrong – a pleasant experience with a mystery novel!Mrs. Pargeter herself is a fascinating character, as there are hints as to her money and how her husband acquired it, but nothing directly spelled out in this novel.

  • ❇Critterbee
    2019-01-28 16:36

    I found this to be a Very Nice Read, although I have come to the series very tardily. Mrs Parteger is so interesting and likable, and the writing (and dialogue) is concise and humorous. The mystery itself was also well-written, with the skillful framing and clearing of each suspect by the author. Just enough insight was shared from each character's point of view to lead you all around until the reveal at the end.This was a bit short of a read, and enjoyable. I have started the second in the series, and so far it is just as good. Looking forward to learning more about Mrs. Parteger.

  • Richard
    2019-01-30 21:48

    This was a pleasant cozy, with excellent color and characterization, and Brett does a great job reading his work.My only complaint is the denouement - since it's not backed up by any actual clues in the story, the reader can only guess the killer's identity by making a random pick (or by eliminating the characters implicated by the book's many red herrings). Still, Mrs. Pargeter is a fun character, and the off-season seaside "residence hotel" for wealthy elderly curmudgeons is a clever setting.I'll definitely be reading - and listening to - more by Brett.

  • Marj
    2019-01-31 21:51

    I hadn't read any of the other Mrs. Pargeter mysteries previously, and while it seemed a little old fashioned, I did enjoy it. I found the mystery interesting, and the Mrs. Pargeter character intriguing. This is the first in the series, and I expect additional books to be a bit better, and the character more defined in future books. I look forward to reading additional books in this series.

  • Wanda
    2019-01-28 17:37

    This is my first Simon Brett book. You don't really know who Mrs. Pargeter is until you have read this first book of the series. As the book goes on you learn a little more about her. She is a very interesting older woman. I love the way she refers to her deceased husband as Mr. Pargeter and what he has told her over the years they were married to do in certain situations. This is the lighter side of murder.

  • Jessica
    2019-02-16 20:00

    How did I get through nearly four decades of a mystery addiction without reading Simon Brett? This is the first in a series featuring Mrs. Pargeter, an English widow whose husband's colorful past provided her with the tools (literally and figuratively) to solve murders. Fans of dry British humor will enjoy this book. Probably a 3.5.

  • Nawfal
    2019-02-03 17:32

    I knew this was a light, quick mystery before reading it. There is a little creeping melancholy about it. Nevertheless, the main character (and her deceased husband) are fascinating. Also, the false leads worked right up until the end. I didn't guess who done it. (But then... I rarely do.) Overall, an entertaining speedy story.

  • Joann
    2019-02-19 18:51

    I have read the other series by Simon Brett when I found this on a shelf at home. I read book # 4 and really enjoyed the character of Mrs. Pargeter. This is book one and found it truly enjoyable. I guess I can relate to older women with gray/white hair that just want to get on with life!

  • Cindy
    2019-02-04 21:32

    I read part of this series a couple of weeks ago and when I wrote my review I complained of feeling like the character was not well developed. This is the first in the series and great care was taken to show the reader who they were dealing with. I loved it.

  • Dave Bowmore
    2019-02-15 14:38

    Great intro to a new character from Brett. I'm really looking forward to reading more about the irresistible Mrs Pargeter.I never liked the feathering stuff and blotto and twinks are too simple and child-like for me, but with Mrs Pargeter, he is back on form.

  • Bea
    2019-01-30 18:31

    A cozy mystery. Mrs. Parteger is a unique protagonist in that she is apparently the wife of a very good thief. She has inherited some of his tools and contacts and uses those gifts to solve the murders of her new lodgings. A fun read.