Extended Audio Sample

Download A Man Lay Dead Audiobook (Unabridged)

Extended Audio Sample A Man Lay Dead (Unabridged) Audiobook, by Ngaio Marsh
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (3,265 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Ngaio Marsh Narrator: James Saxon Publisher: AudioGO Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: June 2005 ISBN:
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The first of Ngaio Marsh's 32 acclaimed mystery novels, this introduces the continuing detective protagonist, Sir Roderick Alleyn of Scotland Yard. Five guests gather at Sir Hubert Handesley's country house party for the amusing parlor game of Murder. But they aren't laughing when the lights come up on an actual corpse: the handsome and mysterious Charles Rankin with a dagger in his back. Scotland Yard's Inspector Roderick Alleyn arrives to find the butler missing, alibis for all the suspects, and an intricate puzzle of betrayal. Thus begins his search for the key player in this deadly game. Download and start listening now!

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Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ann Charlesworth | 2/19/2014

    " I think my mom collected the entire Inspector Alleyn series and she gave them to me. I have just started reading them, but I really like the main character and you have to like the main character to read a series. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Alex S. | 2/18/2014

    " The first third wasn't overly impressive, but once Mr. Alleyn made an appearance it got much better. I'm intruiged enough to read another one! "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Mmyoung | 1/30/2014

    " Reading this I am surprised that Marsh goes on to become one of the grande dames of mystery writing. The seeds are hard to see. An utterly routine house party murder with the usual rube goldberg murder -- with a side dish of ridiculous secret societies that did nothing to advance the plot. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Edith Byington | 1/23/2014

    " Vintage, wonderful who done it. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Melissa Proffitt | 1/22/2014

    " Not too bad, particularly for a first novel. A Man Lay Dead is one of those lovely 1930s English manor mysteries--or at any rate I think they're lovely, which is probably why I love Downton Abbey so much. A bunch of people are invited to play a game called Murder, in which one of them is secretly assigned the role of murderer (by the butler, and books like this make me wonder how anyone gets by without a butler these days, they do so many things) and must "kill" one of the others, and then the survivors have to work out whodunnit. Naturally, a real murder takes place, and almost everyone has a motive for it, so Inspector Alleyn of Scotland Yard has his work cut out for him. Marsh's style is strong but her descriptions are occasionally vague, which is a problem when the mystery is based on how fast someone could get from point A to point B, or what the distance is between the hall table and the staircase. There's also a sub-plot that to me seemed like a dead end and a distraction, but not in a good way. Still, though I wasn't terribly impressed with this book, I'm willing to give the others a try. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jennifer | 1/16/2014

    " Standard country house mystery by one of the genre's greats. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Alisa | 1/3/2014

    " a little like wodehouse and charming. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Ivonne Rovira | 1/1/2014

    " Ngaio Marsh created many lovely cozies after her debut, but I think that A Man Lay Dead remains my favorite. In this book, Marsh establishes Inspector Roderick Alleyn as the irreverent, clever fellow we've grown to love. Those new to Ngaio Marsh should definitely start at the beginning. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kirsten | 12/30/2013

    " Such classic mysteries, in the vein of Agatha Christie, seem best read before their contemporary, more complex cousins. A bit light for me. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Miranda-Hermione | 12/6/2013

    " Marsh's Inspector Allyn is one of the great detectives of the twentieth century, and based on this book, he deserves the honor. A cleverly constructed crime, well constructed characters... this is a great read for any fan of the classic mystery genre "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Milly Cent | 11/28/2013

    " loved it. realised I'd never read any Ngaio Marsh so started at the beginning "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Leslie | 11/27/2013

    " Having just reread this for the first time in a long while, I found it interesting to see how Chief Inspector Alleyn has changed over the course of the series. This isn't Marsh's best, but it is still a extremely enjoyable English country house murder mystery. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Chris Wright | 11/6/2013

    " Good old fashioned murder mystery. Very enjoyable but light and superficial. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jane Farrall | 9/7/2013

    " Good murder mystery novels. I read them years ago and am just re-acquainting myself. Not as well written as Dorothy L Sayers or as clever as Agatha Christie but similar style and period. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Teotakuu | 8/15/2013

    " A house party with murder as its theme. Twists, turns and red herrings "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 G Hodges | 7/26/2013

    " Detective Chief Inspector Alleyn is an insouciant kind of guy and because of this the reader occasionally has trouble taking things seriously. But as with all Marsh books, it is well plotted, well charactered and nicely resolved. Good quick read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Charlotte | 5/7/2013

    " Pretty standard country-house murder stuff, but this book is lifted above the norm by having the best murder method ever. Seriously. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Trish | 4/1/2013

    " It wasn't bad, but wasn't stunning - although it was the first in the Alleyn series, so it may have taken Ngaio Marsh a little while to get going. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jessi | 7/21/2012

    " Different from the movie but still enjoyable. Roderick Alleyne hunts down a killer during a house party. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Angie | 7/18/2012

    " Polished this off on the plane with time to spare. It went very quickly and easily. A house party murder is always fun to solve and the chief inspector was very efficient. I don't know if that's a complement but it's a good bite sized mystery. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Heidi | 7/26/2011

    " Love a good drawing room mystery... despite being 80 years old, this series holds up as well as Christie's... Looking forward to making my way through them! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Suzanne | 7/8/2011

    " Old fashioned good mystery. Ngaio always fine! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Heidi | 3/9/2011

    " Love a good drawing room mystery... despite being 80 years old, this series holds up as well as Christie's... Looking forward to making my way through them! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Teotakuu | 3/2/2011

    " A house party with murder as its theme. Twists, turns and red herrings "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kataklicik | 10/4/2010

    " Somehow not as good as some of her other works. Perhaps because it's shorter? Good twist at the end though. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 astrangerhere | 9/25/2010

    " I have started Ngaio Marsh's Alleyn mysteries on a suggestion from a fellow Agatha Christie fan. I found it quite enjoyable. Alleyn is quite the character, and I look forward to seeing where his story goes. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Mmyoung | 4/30/2010

    " Reading this I am surprised that Marsh goes on to become one of the grande dames of mystery writing. The seeds are hard to see. An utterly routine house party murder with the usual rube goldberg murder -- with a side dish of ridiculous secret societies that did nothing to advance the plot. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Durdles | 3/3/2010

    " Found this on my mother's bookshelf; discovered a good alternative to Agatha Christie. Thoroughly enjoyable whodunnit. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jessi | 2/6/2010

    " Different from the movie but still enjoyable. Roderick Alleyne hunts down a killer during a house party. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Brett | 1/6/2010

    " I never get tired of re-reading these. She, along with Christie, is truly the Queen of golden age British mysteries. It's a great introduction to the character of Roderick Alleyn. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jane | 8/3/2009

    " Good murder mystery novels. I read them years ago and am just re-acquainting myself. Not as well written as Dorothy L Sayers or as clever as Agatha Christie but similar style and period. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Trish | 4/13/2009

    " It wasn't bad, but wasn't stunning - although it was the first in the Alleyn series, so it may have taken Ngaio Marsh a little while to get going. "

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About the Author
Author Ngaio Marsh

Ngaio Marsh (1895–1982), born in New Zealand, wrote over thirty detective novels. Many of her stories had theatrical settings, as her real passion was for the theater. She was both an actress and a producer and almost single-handedly revived the New Zealand public’s interest in live theater. In 1966 she was made Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire.

About the Narrator

James Saxon’s (1955–2003) long acting career included roles in such television series as Doctor Who, Tales from the Crypt, and Vanity Fair.