Holy Disorders (Gervase Fen, #2) by Edmund Crispin

Holy Disorders (Gervase Fen, #2)

Oxford don and part-time detective Gervase Fen is in the town of Tolnbridge where he is happily bounding around with a butterfly net until the cathedral organist is murdered, giving Fen the chance to play sleuth. Tracking down the culprit pleases Fen immensely. Did the victim fall afoul of German spies or local witches, practicing centuries?

Details Holy Disorders (Gervase Fen, #2)

TitleHoly Disorders (Gervase Fen, #2)
Release DateMar 1st, 2006
PublisherFelony & Mayhem
GenreMystery, Fiction, Crime, Golden Age Mystery, Detective

Reviews Holy Disorders (Gervase Fen, #2)

  • Jeffrey Keeten
    ”’Oh, one more thing--very important. Was there any trace of poison or bullets or knife-thrusts or anything at the autopsy? It is over by now, I suppose?’‘Nothing of the kind.’‘Splendid. That suits me admirably.’‘What a pity,’ said the Inspector with heavy irony, ‘that you’ve nothing much to find out. You must tell me when you make an arrest.’‘Ah,’ Fen was pensive. ‘There’s the rub. Means, motive, opportunity, all ...
  • Miriam
    The plot is nonsensical and the characters largely unpleasant. As usual with Crispin, the main attraction is the prose.Vocabulary enhancement:oeillade: an amorous or suggestive glanceautology: the study of oneself preceptor: a teacher responsible to uphold a certain law or tradition (plus learning that Anglicans still have this as a clerical position)
  • Susan
    Holy Disorders is the second Gervase Fen novel, following on from The Case of the Gilded Fly and published in 1945. This is very much Britain in Wartime, although some parts of normal life go on as usual - including the cathedral services at Tolnbridge, where Fen is on holiday from his job as Professor of English at Oxford. When the current organist at the cathedral is attacked, Fen invites Geoffrey Vintner, composer and organist, to take over. V...
  • Oscar
    Si bien el papel de Gervase Fen es fundamental, el protagonismo de ‘Asesinato en la catedral’ se lo lleva Geoffrey Vintner, organista y compositor, que parece un trasunto de Dr. Watson de segunda. La acción se sitúa en la población de Tolnbridge, donde es citado Vintner urgentemente mediante telegrama por Fen, ya que ha habido un atentado contra la vida de Brooks, el organista de la catedral de dicha ciudad. Y hasta allí que se desplace e...
  • Mariano Hortal
    Poco a poco impedimenta nos sigue trayendo las aventuras del detective Gervase Fen; en este caso, no hay que llevarse engaños, estamos posiblemente en el peor de los casos publicados pero, aun así, sigue estando bastante por encima de la media habitual de novelas policíacas. Además resulta un poco atípico ya que la trama está más centrada en asuntos de espionaje que en temas detectivescos, de ahí que resulte más de aventuras que noir. En...
  • Orinoco Womble (tidy bag and all)
    Hard to believe this is the same author and main character as in The Moving Toyshop. This book has none of the lightness of touch or wit that I so enjoyed in the first Fen mystery. Fen calls his friend to a cathedral town help out playing organ for the services (though what Fen is doing there at all is never really explained), and said friend is dogged by anonymous letters, falling trunks and mystery men--and that's just on the journey out. There...
  • John
    World War II is underway, and the organist of the cathedral in a British town has gone mad. In this case, the choir has nothing to do with it.Criminal doings appear to be afoot, and Gervase Fen, Oxford don and amateur detective, is on the case -- although he was really only in town on a search for interesting insects. He summons an acquaintance named Geoffrey Vintner to fill in for the organist and gets him hopelessly entangled in the sordid affa...
  • Bev
    This is my favorite of the Crispin novels. He is an outstanding writer and deserves to be better known than he is.
  • Libros Prestados
    ¿Qué se puede decir de Edmund Crispin y su detective Gervaise Fen? Es como si Gerald Durrell y Agatha Christie hubieran tenido un hijo. Son novelas detectivescas entretenidísimas y divertidísimas.Esta novela tiene probablemente el primer capítulo más divertido de todos los de la serie que he leído (siendo los otros "La juguetería errante" y "El misterio de la mosca dorada"), aunque también tiene una parte final que es más de tensión (c...
  • Anna
    Like Wodehouse, Edmund Crispin's novels seem so blissfully effortless that it is only on re-reading that the craft becomes apparent. I was thrilled to find this old friend on Audible and I have thoroughly enjoyed the performance given by the narrator. In Holy Disorders, Crispin uses comedy as the velvet glove to conceal the iron fist of the plot: it is 1939 after all, and everyone is keeping an eye out for enemy agents. But given that the Devon c...
  • Temp1234
    Despite the title, this is a straight mystery with Crispin’s perfect ear for just the right word or phrase. I find his writing is like poetry, passages stick in my mind - “overzealous bee...dilatory swarm’ – to be rolled over my tongue at leisure.“..his taxi burrowed its way through the traffic outside Waterloo Station like an overzealous bee barging to the front of a dilatory swarm.”
  • Yngvild
    Holy Disorders has almost overtaken The Moving Toyshop as my favourite Edmund Crispin story. It has, of course, Crispin’s brilliant wit that can leave me gasping with laughter and a hapless young composer at the centre of the mayhem. But it is the setting makes this Golden Age murder mystery special.Edmund Crispin (in real life Bruce Montgomery) was an organist at St. John's College, Oxford and a composer in his own right. His description of th...
  • Kate
    I thought this would be a win for me because I really enjoyed the other book I've read by him, The Moving Toyshop. That book is quirky and witty with lots of English wordplay and a murder that involves an entire store disappearing and reappearing overnight. This one started out great, following Geoffrey Vintner who is ordered by his friend, Oxford professor and self-important detective Gervaise Fen, to come to a village outside of London to subst...
  • Judy
    Oxford don, Gervase Fen, is eccentric, sarcastic, absent-minded, childish and vain--as well as utterly delightful. Edmund Crispin, the pseudonym of Robert Bruce Montgomery, first began to write mystery stories featuring Gervase Fen because of a bet. The rumor is that Gervase Fen is based on Oxford professor, W.E. Moore and this book, like Crispin's others, is full of references to English literature, poetry, and music. Set in the World War II era...
  • George
    An Oxford professor Gervase Fen amateur detective mystery. Fen is an eccentric character given to outbursts and sarcasm directed at those who are unable to follow his reasoning and interpreting of clues. This story involves two murders, one of which appears to have been impossible, and quite a cast of characters who are associated with the Church of England. In some ways, a fun read while the Fen character can get on your nerves.
  • Barbara
    Can't say I liked this one. It lacked a lot of the humour which is a Crispin trademark and I found the motivations of the murder implausible. Still, it had its moments. Even ordinary Crispin is a good read.
  • Nimbex
    Tan genial como el resto de libros protagonizados por Gervase Fen.
  • JZ
    Laughed until I cried on this one, and loved the mystery, too. I read this years and years ago, and looked for it ever since. I'm looking forward to a good reread soon.
  • Christina
    Holy Disorders's beginning was reminiscent of a Hitchcock film: a man on the run from unknown attackers who pursue him from the moment he leaves for London's Victoria Station to his disembarcation at Tolnbridge, where he is to provide a butterfly net to neophyte entomologist, amateur detective, and Languages and Literature professor Gervase Fen. Fun to read for history, English and American literature references, dialogue and setting, but as a my...
  • S Dizzy
    I love the crisp, sometimes witty descriptions - "Coffee was in the drawing room. There rose to meet them as they came in, Garbin and Spitshuker still engaged in surreptitious altercation, a little old man of phenomenal thinness, with a sharp nose, small beady eyes which never for more than a moment held your own, and a crown of sparse and wispy white hair - Sir John Dallow, Chancellor of the Cathedral. In speech he alternatively gabbled and draw...
  • Vicci
    Just a few things to note:1. I think it's interesting that another reviewer comments that the characters are largely unpleasant, as is often the case with Crispin. I find the opposite. They're usually middle-class caricatures that, I suppose, might be quite annoying if you came across them in real life, but on the page I find them quite funny and likeable.2. This novel sits comfortably between The Gilded Fly and Th Moving Toyshop in both chronolo...
  • Karina
    It's a comparison I've made before, but reading Edmund Crispin is like crossing Agatha Christie with P G Wodehouse in the best way. The mystery - and it's solving - are sort of by-the-way; really the author is having fun with situations and characters, and throwing out apt quotations that the audience is expected to catch, and enjoy. I will say the chapter 'Two Canons' where they meet a possible suspect who owns a pet raven made me guffaw in the ...
  • Sherry
    With unending musical and literary references, the dialogue is amusing. There is one laugh-out-loud section in which protagonists recite a poem unknown to the butt of the joke. If I included a spoiler, you would understand how that is funny. You will just have to take my word for it. Here are a couple of random quotes. Someone bargaining with the final judgment wanted to take "a front seat at the celestial entertainment." Another character biting...
  • Lauren LaTulip
    Argh, so torn about this book, written in 1945! On one hand, so much screwball comedy and offhand humour that I'll be laughing for a month. On the other hand, definitely misogynistic, though quite hard on most of the men too. Detective fiction featuring an impossibly ill mannered brilliant professor from Oxford, usually featuring a likeable young male sidekick. This one has spies, religion, music and witchcraft stirred up together. Likeable, but....
  • Anna Katharine
    A little dark, with odd touches of the paranormal, but engaging, self-deprecating, and dripping with literary and other cultural references from the period. There are a lot of passing Anglican/Episcopal and musical references, so if you move in either of those worlds, you'll feel like an insider.
  • Liriel
    Why is Gervase Fen hardly in Gervase Fen mysteries? I call for more. This one was well written just not as interesting.
  • SuedePuzzler
    Some pretty outlandish scenarios in this book. Quite amusing at times. Did not enjoy trying to pay attention to where everybody was at various times.
  • Alaina Sloo
    I love Gervase Fen. This is not my favorite of his books, but they're always entertaining.
  • Alasdair Peterson
    Characteristically ingenious.