The bright spot for me was the character of Wexford who, while not a flashy or big personality, approached the case in a likeable and straightforward manner. Certainly his presence looms large over the story but it is not his investigation and his biggest contribution is to recap the details of the crime at the heart of this story. The novel begins with Wexford fielding a meeting with Henry Archery, a clergyman, who wishes to discuss one of his old cases. Archery wants to look into the case again to see if Wexford made a mistake as he and his wife are unwilling to consent to the marriage otherwise. I commented in my review of the previous novel how differing social attitudes affect a modern reading of that novel with a contemporary one and I suspect that the same is true here. I think that a reader in was expected to feel a degree of sympathy with the attitudes of Reverend Archery at the start of the novel that a reader today may find a little harder to extend to him.
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The second book to feature the classic crime-solving detective, Chief Inspector Wexford. Some cases are impossible to bury. It's impossible to forget the violent bludgeoning to death of an elderly lady in her home. Even more so when it's your first murder case. Wexford believed he'd solved Mrs Primero's murder fifteen years ago. It was no real mystery. Everyone knew Painter, The second book to feature the classic crime-solving detective, Chief Inspector Wexford.
Everyone knew Painter, her odd-job man, had done it. There had never been any doubt in anyone's mind. Until now Henry Archery's son is engaged to Painter's daughter.
Only Archery can't let the past remain buried. He wants to prove Wexford wrong, and in probing into the lives of the witnesses questioned all those years ago, he stirs up more than old ghosts.
Get A Copy. Paperback , pages. Published October 1st by Arrow first published More Details Original Title. Inspector Wexford 2. Other Editions Friend Reviews. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about A New Lease of Death , please sign up. Jonatas Souza This answer contains spoilers… view spoiler [Reginald Wexford. See all 3 questions about A New Lease of Death…. Lists with This Book. This book is not yet featured on Listopia.
Community Reviews. Showing Average rating 3. Rating details. More filters. Sort order. Feb 01, Bandit rated it liked it. Can't really go wrong with Rendell. To be honest, series aren't my favorite and I much prefer her stand alones, but Wexford 1 was very good, so why not continue. This one is a much different book from its predecessor, yes there is also a mystery and Wexford is present, but only tangentially so.
The actual protagonist is a Reverend set on revisiting Wexford's first murder case to see if the victim might have been wrongly convicted. The Reverend has a vested interest in the matter since his son i Can't really go wrong with Rendell. The Reverend has a vested interest in the matter since his son is intent on marrying the murderer's daughter.
And so the small town's or is it a village's secrets are being dragged into light. The general tone was very much that of a drama with a mystery subplot. The real star, as often is the case, is Rendell's writing, which I find extremely enjoyable. The complexity of her characters and motivations and so on. This isn't as deft of a psychological fiction as Rendell's written nor is it as dark or as complex as her novels can be, but it's still quite good and for a three hours invested, plenty entertaining.
Quite possibly inferior to the first Wexford mystery, but then again a very different book and in its own right worth a read.
Also, notably not as dated as one might expect of a 50 year old story. I enjoyed the story but I have to say that the Inspector plays a relatively peripheral role in the story. Clergyman Henry Archery is coming to town to re-investigate Wexford's first ever murder case. Archery's son, Charles, is engaged to be married to one Tessa Kershaw, nee Painter. Tessa's father was found guilty, after Wexford's investigation, of the murder of Mrs Primero, who he worked for.
Painter was executed for this murder. Archery hopes to investigate and discover evidence that Painter didn't do the murder but that someone else did. He has this feeling that if Painter was guilty, then maybe his daughter might not be such an acceptable candidate for marriage. Probably much more nuanced than I've described Thus begins Archery's investigation. He will interview the family of Mrs.
Primero, Tessa's mother and other witnesses to the crime. At the same time he will find himself head-over-heels attracted to a woman he meets at his hotel one evening. Archery's son will eventually arrive to help in the investigation and will be somewhat of a bull in a china shop.
Wexford hovers on the periphery. He is convinced his earlier investigation is sound. He is like a large bear prowling around and trying to do his day-to-day business with his right hand man, Inspector Burden. It's a meandering sort of story.
I guess in some ways it could be called a cozy mystery because there isn't any grim acts of violence, except for the original murder. But it's also more than that. The personalities involved, from Archery to every other character introduced. Well-written and with a fascinating build-up to the satisfying conclusion.
I look forward to reading the next story 3. View 2 comments. May 10, Bettie rated it liked it Shelves: midlife-crisis , published , pecuniarilly-challenged , games-people-play , series , summer , tbr-busting , mystery-thriller , britain-england , betrayal. Read by Nigel Anthony Total Runtime A helpless old woman battered to death with an axe. Harry Painter hung for it, and Chief Inspector Wexford is certain they executed the right man. But Reverend Archery has doubts. He begins unravelling the past, only to discover that murder breeds murder -- and often conceals e Read by He begins unravelling the past, only to discover that murder breeds murder -- and often conceals even deeper secrets.
AKA 'Sins of the Fathers'. An man was convicted and executed for a crime, and Inspector Wexford was one of the men who was caught him. Anyway, it causes Wexford to reconsider his own role in the ancient murder and in doing so to uncover other secrets that lead to other crimes Barf-o-roo, but still its not a bad mystery.
I am rereading this for a buddy read on the English mystery group and loved it even more this time around. The older I get, the more I enjoy Wexford. Everyone is welcome to join the buddy read. Mar 11, Laura rated it liked it Shelves: british-literature , fiction , suspense-thriller , fictionth-century , film-only , read From IMDb: Wexford's first ever successful murder case comes back to haunt him when a vicar starts to rake up the past.
Was the man hanged on Wexford's evidence actually innocent? View all 4 comments.
A New Lease of Death
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A New Lease of Death by Ruth Rendell
An old lady, Mrs Primero, was bludgeoned to death in her own home by her handyman, Harry Painter, for a few hundred pounds. Did Wexford send an innocent man to his death — and is the Reverend Archery going to find much more than he bargained for? This month is going to be Ruth Rendell month on the blog well, every other book anyway. The prolific author has been overly neglected by this blog and this reader.