Read Murder in the Dark by Kerry Greenwood Online


It's Christmas, and Phryne has an invitation to the Last Best party of 1928, a four-day extravaganza being held at Werribee Manor house and grounds by the Golden Twins, Isabella and Gerald Templar. She knew them in Paris, where they caused a sensation.Phryne is in two minds about going. But when threats begin arriving in the mail, she promptly decides to accept the invitatIt's Christmas, and Phryne has an invitation to the Last Best party of 1928, a four-day extravaganza being held at Werribee Manor house and grounds by the Golden Twins, Isabella and Gerald Templar. She knew them in Paris, where they caused a sensation.Phryne is in two minds about going. But when threats begin arriving in the mail, she promptly decides to accept the invitation. No one tells Phryne Fisher what to do.At the Manor House, she is accommodated in the Iris room, and at the party dallies with two polo-playing women, a Goat lady (and goat), a large number of glamorous young men, and a very rude child called Tarquin.The acolytes of the golden twins are smoking hashish and dreaming. The jazz is as hot as the drinks are cold. Heaven. It all seems like good clean fun until three people are kidnapped, one of them the abominable child, and Phryne must puzzle her way through the cryptic clues of the scavenger hunt to retrieve the hostages and save the party from further disaster....

Title : Murder in the Dark
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9781741147094
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 299 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Murder in the Dark Reviews

  • Ivonne Rovira
    2018-09-20 18:00

    The Honorable Phryne Fisher undertakes some sleuthing into the threats to the life of the delicious but dishonorable Gerald Templar, newly arrived to Australia from Paris. Gerald and Isabella Templar — known as the Golden Twins — have transported their sybaritic posse of lesbian lovelies and handsome young men with them and are now staging a four-day Last Best Party of 1928 to welcome 1929. Phryne knew the Templars and their lavish, scandalous parties from her days in Paris, but she’s of two minds as to whether to attend the hedonistic spree — until someone tries to warn her off with a venomous coral snake. Fierce Phryne therefore determines to head to Werribee Manor and unmask the villain — preferably roughing him up in the process.While nearly ever Phryne novel provides a glimpse into Phryne’s own sybaritic side, Murder in the Dark dwells heavily on that part of her. In addition, there’s an intriguing puzzle as Phryne, with the aid of a new boy-toy named Nicholas Booth, tries to discover who wishes to harm the gorgeous Gerald and why. This 16th novel seems more dreamy and sensuous than usual (I know that’s promising a lot!), and longtime readers will enjoy its change of pace; that said, newbies to the series will find this novel a great introduction to the fabulous Phryne. In the interest of full disclosure, I received this book from NetGalley and Poisoned Pen Press in exchange for an honest review. And special thanks to Poisoned Pen Press for reissuing the fabulous Phryne Fisher in paperback and Kindle editions for a new generation to devour.

  • Nikki
    2018-08-29 11:27

    Wait, what? The thing that really threw me with this book is that this is Phryne’s first Christmas in Australia?! This is the sixteenth book or so, and eventful as Phryne’s life is, it seems a little bizarre that everything that’s happened so far has taken less than twelve months. Especially given the time passing during Lin Chung’s trips and such in Death Before Wicket. And this would mean Dot’s courtship with Hugh Collins isn’t that long after all — which seems odd, having got the feeling they were going at a glacial pace!Still. This was pretty fun, although the setting was bizarre. Not because it was Christmas-in-July-weather, though that is a weird thought, but the whole house party and the sex parties and the general sea of implied queerness; at times, I wondered if it was just going to degenerate into a story all about sex, though it never quite went there. (No more than the other books, anyway.) This time, Phryne has to deal with a serial killer, but weirdly that didn’t change the tone much.Overall, I’d have to say I found this instalment a little uneven — it’s fun to read, but I know some of the other books are better.Originally posted here.

  • J
    2018-09-19 12:02

    I am beginning to think the Phyrne Fisher books are like Nancy Drew. While the same author's name appears on each book, they are in fact written by different people. Or maybe they were edited by different people. Of the half dozen or so books in this series I have read, this one is far and away the worst. It's still fun, but not as much fun as some of the others. Some of the ends are never tied up. But more importantly, the writing is definitely weak compared to some of the others. So, if you're going to read all of the books...fine. But if you are only planning to read a few, this is one you can skip.

  • Kathryn
    2018-09-11 13:23

    2.5 stars this time. This is the 16th in the Phryne Fisher series and normally I listen to these as audiobooks, because I enjoy Stephanie Daniels’ voice. This time however, I decided I’d try to whip through it in written form on the cusp of New Year’s Eve (which is when the story is set).I’ve listened to most of the last 10 Phryne Fishers in the series as audiobooks. I know I miss things when I listen to books, but as I’ve listened, I’ve assumed that these books occur over the course of several years. So I’m not sure whether years are specifically mentioned in other books, but it is only now - in book 16 - that I’ve come to realise that all these other books (all 16!) have apparently been set over no more than the course of the last 12 months!! In the first chapter, Phryne says to Lin Chung “It’s my first Christmas here. It really doesn’t seem right, the sun shining and the birds singing at Christmas, which is in the heart of winter at home.” I did go and have a read of the preview of Cocaine Blues - book number 1 in the series - to see if there was any mention of a year (I couldn’t find one), but it starts with Phryne in the UK and then coming out to Australia. I don’t actually remember that, so I might have to re-read it sometime!Kerry Greenwood always has a few lines of something relevant at the beginning of each chapter, initially I liked how the beginnings of each in this started with a few lines of a Christmas carol or song or a recipe for a cocktail(!) and I thought all the chapters were going to begin with similarly Christmas/New Year-themed offerings, but it was a random mix, in the end - poetry, lines from Gilbert & Sullivan, jazz songs, a Bible verse…And finally, about the story itself - I think this was the oddest Phryne I’ve read so far. I’m very glad I wasn’t listening to this one, because I couldn’t keep track of it when I was reading the words with my own eyes!! There were a couple of beautiful twins - Gerald and Isabella - who everyone worshipped, for some reason I never quite fathomed - it sounded like they were running some sort of cult...and yet not quite... I don't know, and I don't really care, but I do hope my next, Dead Man's Chest (because I've already read number 17 - Murder on a Midsummer Night - out of order) is an improvement on this one!

  • Lorna
    2018-08-31 16:12

    An entertaining mystery, but I don't understand why the two orgy scenes were necessary... I don't really consider myself a prude, and sex in books is fine and can aid a story, but really? Orgies? I had already gathered that the planned murder victim, Gerald, was rather hedonistic based on the sumptuous setting, lavish entertainment, and the array of beautiful young men he surrounded himself with. Did not need the extra help on this one.I did enjoy the riddles Phryne had to figure out along the way. Greenwood has a fun way of intertwining several mini mysteries into one larger case. It's neat to see how they all relate, and how each wraps up in its own way and time.

  • Danielle
    2018-09-18 12:29

    What was intriguing about this book was that it is set in the 1920s and in Australia. The main character Phryne Fisher is unique in her freedom and views of life. She is basically a good person who definitely indulges herself, and I found that I liked her. The author did allow the reader to solve some of her "puzzles"--the killer was a bit obscure, but there were other mysteries that wrapped up nicely.However, this was not a book that I could easily pick up. I was often bored by it. I didn't like all the characters--and some from previous books were not well incorporated into this one. There was a lot of lazing around and hedonistic exploration which didn't really lend much to the story line.All in all, I doubt I'll read another book in this series.

  • Gottfried Neuner
    2018-09-17 13:00

    I normally like the Phryne Fisher Mysteries, but this one was one of Greenwood's lesser works. So forgettable indeed that I put it on my to-read list again, because I forgot I already had read it. Imagine my surprise when I started reading and this book seemed familiar. Uncanny.Phryne is at a party of some decadent cultists she knew in Paris. The party is grand and the whole book seems more focussed to show off how awesome the party is, and forgets about the mystery for large parts of the novel.The book kind of trickles along until it comes to a conclusion that can be seen as an end. At least it wasn't "Blood and Circuses".

  • Orinoco Womble (tidy bag and all)
    2018-09-16 13:11

    I give this book 5 stars because it was exactly what I wanted: a romp, a good, fun, light read that cheers and inebriates...particularly if you make up any of the cocktail recipes at the end of each chapter!Phryne Fisher is up to her usual tricks in this episode. Lin Chung doesn't want her to attend a weekend house party held by a group of Bright Young People. Reason enough for her to insist on going--but an attempt on her life by an unusual if beautiful method decides the issue: she's going. Not least because she expects her would-be murderer to be there! He'd better watch out, because Phryne is on the warpath; she's gonna find out who's naughty or nice, and woe betide the naughty ones. Add a Mideval feast, a Japanese enkai, and a desert-song party to the mix, along with "pure" orgies and plenty of hash, and you've got a real Christmas cracker of a book. Nerine makes a cameo appearance and more than one red herring adds savour to the sleuthing. Enjoy!

  • Erin
    2018-08-30 16:11

    Not the best in the stories about Phryne, but not too bad all the same.I can't help thinking back to the first few books in this series and making a bit of a character comparison of Phryne Fisher then and now. It's hard to tell if it's the character who's mellowed or the author. For sure Phryne seems much less of floozy than she did in the first couple of books (I know, I know, she's "free spirited" and more comfortable with her sexuality than the average 1920's lady), but it's hard to tell if that's because she has a bit more self control after becoming settled with her wonderfully make-shift family and a reoccurring lover, or if it's because the author has been focusing more on the mysteries and less on her attempt to shock the reader by throwing her character at every pretty male in the book. Perhaps a little bit of both. I think the books benefit from it, whatever the cause may be.Oh, and only one instance of "artlessly" in this book! It has to be a record!

  • Liz
    2018-09-22 16:13

    I love the Hon Phryne Fisher series so much. I was reading another book but hit a wall with it, I picked this up and flew through it. They're just so readable. If you ever find yourself in a slump, pick up one of these books and it will bring you right out of it.Phryne and her family have been celebrating Xmas when she receives an invitation in the mail to The Last Best Party of 1928, a four day decadent extravaganza at Chirnside Manor in the Victorian hills. Whilst contemplating her answer, she receives a coral snake in a package which almost kills her along with a message to stay away from the party. Which of course, instantly has her packing her bags for a stay in the country. While partying with jazz singers, stockmen & women plus assorted nymphs & nymphettes, a child is snatched, another is missing and Phryne finds herself on the trail of a hired killer who's the most ruthless villain she's ever faced.

  • Chris Davis
    2018-09-19 17:59

    I'm pretty sure this is going to be the last of my Phryne Fisher books. While the mysteries are interesting enough, the peripheral story lines bog the books down. In this case, poems, descriptions of charades and incredibly drawn out descriptions of events which had no bearing on the plot. As I neared the end of this book, I found the absolute refusal of the author to wrap things up frustrating and downright annoying - I get it, the author did a lot of research. I don't need to know all of it!

  • Ed
    2018-08-29 11:14

    Too much going on in "Murder in the Dark" and much of it not that interesting. Phryne Fisher is her usual delightfully insouciant self but she is stuck in the middle of a several days long house party full of characters who are more annoying or distracting than interesting. Not one of Greenwood's better efforts.

  • Jenne
    2018-09-18 18:12

    I liked the decadent midsummer New Year's house party weekend, but I missed having the regular characters around, a bit.

  • Sarah Holmes
    2018-09-07 17:10

    I loved this book! The writing was masterfully done. Historical details were accurate and informative. It was interesting to learn about the different foods and entertainment styles of the different cultures while solving a mystery. The people such as the Templars were unique and lovely. My favorite character (beyond Miss Fisher) was Mintie the goat. I cheered when he stole the show at the polo match! This is a must read!!!!

  • Cyn Mcdonald
    2018-09-20 16:01

    A Miss Fisher I somehow managed to miss. A bit of a continuity problem, because she says it's her first Christmas in Australia, but it's 1928 and she has her adopted daughters. And honestly I don't remember quite so much descriptive sex, or, in this case, not-quite-sex, or for that matter drugs. But it was a good story anyway.

  • Kate
    2018-09-16 18:05

    These books really aren't that great but I keep reading them anyway because I love female detective stories set in the 1920s/1930s.

  • Tina Panik
    2018-08-27 11:11

    An average adventure in Phryne's catalog. There's a lot of poetry, and a kidnapping. Phyrne is reading The Murder of Roger Ackroyd while solving this one, which was amusing.

  • Melissa
    2018-09-20 12:05

    The solution of the twins financial problems made me roll my eyes so hard I think I sprained something.

  • Sarah Zama
    2018-09-16 12:59

    I have to be honest, this Miss Fisher novel was quite disappointing. In fact, characters act and speak so differently from the other two novels I’ve read, they don’t even seem to come from the same hand.The story was all over the place. As usual, there are many threads intertwining, which I normally like, but here they just confused me. I kept losing sight of what the mystery was all about and what was Miss Fisher doing about it. The investigation didn’t seem tight at all and often I didn’t see where some conclusions came from.Miss Fisher finds herself at the Best End of the Year Party of 1928, where an assassin is lurking, but it looked to me as if the author was much more concerned with describing the party (there were loooong sections of this) than building a mystery. I still read it with some pleasure, because Phryne Fisher is a good character and because the writing was easy and nice, but honestly it wasn’t as entertaining as other novels in the same series.Still, I suppose long series like this one will always offer good stories and less good ones. I will read more Miss Fisher novels.

  • Marianne
    2018-09-06 14:19

    Murder in the Dark is the sixteenth book in the popular Phryne Fisher series by Australian author Kerry Greenwood. It is the end of the year, and Phryne, somewhat reluctantly, accepts an invitation to attend the Last Best Party of 1928, spurred on to do so when several anonymous communications warn her against it. Held at Werribee in the Chirnside Manor, this six-day party is being thrown by the beautiful and charismatic Gerald Templar and his equally beautiful twin sister, Isabella, lately arrived from London via Paris. The Templars have brought with them their acolytes, including, among others, the Wildean Sylvanus Leigh and the Sapphic girls from Montparnasse. Amid the two hundred guests are the polo-playing Grammar Boys and Wonnangatta Tigers, a jazz trio, Arabian, Japanese and medieval musicians, the delectable Nicholas Booth (whom Phryne deems fit to dally with in Lin Chung’s absence), Madge, the Goat lady and her mint-addicted goat, a scowling orphan named Tarquin and Blues singer Nerine. The Last Best Party includes themed dinners, hamper lunches, a polo match, a deer hunt, trap shooting, poetry recitals, parlour games, a Bal Masqué, a jazz concert, plenty of drinking, eating and hashish, and certain other decadent activities. Upon arrival, Phryne finds her invitation has more than just a social aspect, as Gerald Templar has been receiving death threats and pleads for her assistance. Soon enough, young Tarquin goes missing, riddles begin appearing and Phryne finds she is trying to trap a contract killer. Stabbing, mass poisoning, kidnapping, ground glass in cold cream, a ransom note, and a coral snake in a gift box all feature. Motives of revenge, jealousy, hatred and greed propel several different offenders. As well as quotes from classic poems and plays, and recipes for delicious cocktails, the reader tastes Christmas in the Fisher household and chez Williams, Butler, Yates and Johnson. Phryne goes undercover as a housemaid, wins a bet using a bunch of mint, remembers a few things her detested father was right about, attempts some rhyme and asks the all-important question: just how much cream can one cat hold? Delightful mystery, as always.

  • Paul Juniper
    2018-09-02 11:05

    I don't like this book. I don't care what happens to the characters. I just want it to be over. Contrived and boring.

  • Suzanne
    2018-08-31 15:28

    Can I say hot mess? Totally unlikeable characters. Would have cheerfully welcomed a mass poisoning. Creepy suggestions of incest. Drug use. Group sex. Psychotic killer -- who really was easily identified early on; it took Phryne THAT long to notice? And a dull slog. Far, far too much detail about the various banquets and events. Almost like reading an essay on the subject. And was it necessary to walk us through every one of Phryne's actions from the time she gets up until she -- finally (the days must have more than 24 hours) goes back to bed.As we know, the "independent" Miss Fisher is now a concubine (not really an independent position, now, is it?), so in this installment, her only sexual encounters are of the type that Bill Clinton would insist are not sex. And she makes the bizarre statement at one point that she draws the line at married men. Really? Greenwood seems to have run out of ideas for mysteries and even for settings, so she's going for, shall we say, unusual sexual behavior of the 1920s.

  • Cheyenne Blue
    2018-09-10 13:10

    I love the Miss Fisher books for so many reasons: the fun of them, the TV show, the Australian (mainly Melbourne) setting, the abundance of queer supporting characters, the very independent and feminist Phryne. They're my go-to comfort reading. Some of the storylines are better than others.Murder in the Dark wasn't one of the better books, IMHO, it dragged a little. The whole acolyte thing was a bit annoying. But it kept me engaged and entertained, as Kerry Greenwood's books always do.And then I read this, and my love for Ms Greenwood knows no bounds:"Phryne! good to see you! You haven't met our other mounts. This is Black Boy, named after King Charles," said Jill. "This is Rapide, and this is Ann's pony George."OMG! A Ruby Ferguson "Jill" books reference! Characters' names and pony names lifted directly from the 1950s series of pony books. I love, love, love it. And that alone gets this book an extra star.

  • Jann Barber
    2018-09-18 18:25

    This is the 16th book in the series, but is the first one I read. Phryne Fisher is described as delectable, and she certainly is.Phryne is invited to a "last best" party at the end of 1928. This is to be a four-day extravaganza, hosted by the Golden Twins, Isabella and Gerald Templar. Phryne met them during her time in Paris. They have relocated, along with their entourage, to Australia, and have acquired the use of Werribee Manor House and grounds.Phryne considered declining until she received threats in the mail. One does not tell Phryne what to do, so off she goes.During the festivities, Phryne continues to receive "clues" to help her solve three kidnappings and prevent an upcoming murder.This is a delicious series and I plan to read all of the books! All of them!

  • Joan Colby
    2018-08-28 11:29

    This series starring Phryne Fisher is such an enjoyable read. I first encountered it via the PBS production of Miss Fisher tales. The character of Phryne, an enlightened young woman of the 1920’s in Australia, is charming, the cast of supporting characters always fun as are the descriptions of place and the many adventures that Phryne takes on. Fortunately, there are quite a few more books in this series to be read.

  • Beth
    2018-09-06 10:11

    Really enjoyed this as an audiobook, and as a story. Greenwood creates the wildest of wild parties, multiple absorbing mysteries, and plenty of sensory delights. Stephanie Daniel is brilliant with the variety of accents from American through upper-class British, French, and a range of Australian accents--and she sings jazz and blues rather well too!

  • Kate
    2018-08-27 15:12

    Drags a bit but the description of a Last Best Party in the 20s is worth it. A bit of near-magic realism to tie up all loose ends, very enjoyable.

  • Marsha
    2018-09-04 13:29

    too much craziness, drugs, etc. - this was a bizarre book

  • Sallie
    2018-09-21 11:07

    No spoilers here, but this one disappointed me. Miss Phryne is as fabulous as always, but the biggest villain was not credible.

  • Marcia
    2018-09-04 18:19

    I found this book boring. I think I like the books better when there are more of the familiar characters in them.