The Nine Tailors

( 13 )

Overview

The Nine Tailors is Dorothy L. Sayers's finest mystery, featuring Lord Peter Whimsey, and a classic of the genre.

The nine tellerstrokes from the belfry of an ancient country church toll out the death of an unknown man and call the famous Lord Peter Whimsey to investigate the good and evil that lurks in every person. Steeped in the atmosphere of a quiet parish in the strange, flat fen-country of East Anglia, this is a tale of suspense, character, and mood by an author critics ...

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Overview

The Nine Tailors is Dorothy L. Sayers's finest mystery, featuring Lord Peter Whimsey, and a classic of the genre.

The nine tellerstrokes from the belfry of an ancient country church toll out the death of an unknown man and call the famous Lord Peter Whimsey to investigate the good and evil that lurks in every person. Steeped in the atmosphere of a quiet parish in the strange, flat fen-country of East Anglia, this is a tale of suspense, character, and mood by an author critics and readers rate as one of the great masters of the mystery novel.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780156658997
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
  • Publication date: 9/28/1966
  • Series: Lord Peter Wimsey Mystery Series
  • Pages: 420
  • Sales rank: 121,497
  • Lexile: 910L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 6.30 (w) x 7.98 (h) x 1.05 (d)

Meet the Author

Dorothy L. Sayers
Dorothy L. Sayers
A refined author with a talent for wry mysteries spiced with quotations of verse and observations about English society, Dorothy L. Sayers created aristocratic sleuth Lord Peter Wimsey. Though best known for her entertaining crime novels, the lively minded Sayers also wrote plays, poetry and essays on Christianity.

Biography

Dorothy L. Sayers, the greatest of the golden age detective novelists, was born in Oxford in 1893. She was one of the first women to be awarded a degree by Oxford University and worked as a copywriter in an advertising agency from 1921 to 1932. Her aristocratic detective, Lord Peter Wimsey, became one of the most popular fictional heroes of the twentieth century. Dorothy L. Sayers also became famous for her religious plays, notably The Man Born to be King, which was broadcast controversially during the war years, but she considered her translation of Dante's Divine Comedy to be her best work. She died in 1957.

Author biography courtesy of St. Martin's Press.

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    1. Also Known As:
      Dorothy Leigh Sayers (full name)
    1. Date of Birth:
      June 13, 1893
    2. Place of Birth:
      Oxford, England
    1. Date of Death:
      December 17, 1957

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 13 )
Rating Distribution

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(8)

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(5)

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Sort by: Showing all of 13 Customer Reviews
  • Posted June 14, 2011

    Very satisfying!

    This is a great read all by itself so you don't have to have read any Lord Peter before. The problem is engaging, the people real. You want to be along for the trip. I find it the most satisfying of all the Lord Peter books. It stands by itself. The reviews for all the Lord Peter works are pretty good and this one is no different. I noticed someone saying that the author was trying to hard to be literature. Frankly, this is literature. It is also a very rewarding mystery from the Golden Age of British mystery. Enjoy!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 20, 2010

    It seems you can hear the bells ringing when you read this

    I enjoyed this book for several reasons. First, Peter Wimsey is at his best and it seemed appropriate that he'd know how to do change ringing of church bells. I knew nothing about it and had fun looking up how it works. It takes real concentration and focus to do it for hours like they did in the beginning of the book. Second, I was unfamilar with the setting of the Lincolnshire area of the England and was able to learn more about the flooding and drainage issues that provided some of the book's action. Finally, I thought I knew how the victim died early on in my reading although I didn't think it could be that simple. It was believable to me that it took a while for the characters in the book to determine what happened because no one would think about doing it that way.

    All in all an enjoyable read. I like to re-read books and this one is definitely one I'd read again in a few years. Glad it's in my library now.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 5, 2000

    Yet another wonderful contribution from DLS

    In my opinion, Dorothy Leigh Sayers is the best mystery novelist ever. (Christie, on the other hand, is only a mystery _writer_.) Considered by many to be the best Lord Peter book ever. I enjoyed it, thoroughly. The plot is carefully done, and Lord Peter Wimsey is his usual ferociously enjoyable self. Read it.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 24, 2014

    Reread all my sayers but confess

    I skip all the bell ringing notations etc dislike bell ringing and that includes hand bells. Sayers vicars are often the same what i have finally caught on that as a state religion the parish was supported by taxing the landowners and the biggest tax payer plus separate donations could appoint his choice to the post? Chapel and catholic were on their own. Really should look this up . the historical is iin their modern setting now years ago.

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  • Posted December 27, 2013

    Superb, A Must Read

    Just as great now as when I read it for the first time. Superior detective story from one of the greats.

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  • Posted December 31, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Lord Peter Wimsey, possibly at his best

    I've read several others of the Lord Peter Wimsey canon by Dorothy L. Sayers, but none have satisfied me as much as "The Nine Tailors." Perhaps it is because there doesn't seem to be an in-between on this book; you either love it for life, or dismiss it as inaccurate fluff. There is much debate on whether a person could be killed in the manner described in the denouement. But I believe the characterizations are superb; and, though I could wish for more of Bunter, a greater gentleman's gentleman than Jeeves, I generally find this book excellent.

    In brief, Lord Peter and Bunter are stranded in the small village of Fenchurch St. Paul when their car breaks down. Four months or so, a body is dug up in a grave that is being opened for the husband of a woman who had died while Wimsey was in the area. Wimsey and Bunter may have seen deceased on their way out of Fenchurch, and get called into the case to determine the man's identity, and how he was killed. The entire matter seems to be mixed up with the theft some 20 years before of a valuable emerald necklace, as well as with the bells of the village church, which figure prominently throughout the book. More twists and turns are found here than on a mountainside switchback. The identity of the corpse will surprise, as will the way in which deceased met the end.

    The sections on change ringing may be hard to understand for someone not used to the English method of ringing "music" on church bells. You can consult the Wikipedia article on the subject; however, much more can be said about this than will fit in a Wikipedia article. I would suggest "Change Ringing: The Art and Science of Change Ringing on Church and Hand Bells" by Wilfrid G. Wilson. It has some easier chapters before you get into the heavy work, and the terminology explained will help clarify some of what is going on in "The Nine Tailors." (Wilson's book does not appear to be available from Barnes & Noble. Try your local library.)

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    Posted May 15, 2013

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    Posted August 10, 2009

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    Posted September 30, 2013

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    Posted April 28, 2010

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