Wednesday, September 28, 2022

Audio Review: Marple: Twelve New Mysteries by Naomi Alderman, Leigh Bardugo, Alyssa Cole, Lucy Foley, and more...


Marple: Twelve New Mysteries by Naomi Alderman, Leigh Bardugo, Alyssa Cole, Lucy Foley, Elly Griffiths, Natalie Haynes, Jean Kwok, Val McDermid, Karen M. McManus, Dreda Say Mitchell, Kate Mosse & Ruth Ware
Publication Date: September 13th 2022 by Harper Audio
Pages: 380
Audio Book Length: 11 hrs 28 min
Narrator: multiple (see below)
Source: Publisher &

My Thoughts:
I’m a huge fan of Agatha Christie’s mysteries. I’ve read almost all and have re-read my favorites many times over the years, so I was understandably excited for the “additional” Miss Marple stories written as I think as an ode to Agatha Christie and her much beloved spinster sleuth. I had fun with all the stories. Some I rated higher because they were, IMO, truer to Agatha Christie’s version of Miss Marple.

Evil in Small Place by Lucy Foley read by Alex Kingston: Miss Marple is visiting an old school friend. A much talked about French woman is murdered before choir practice. Of course, not much gets by Miss Marple which puts her in some danger. Loved this one and it felt very true to Miss Marple’s character and Agatha Christie’s style. Excellent narration. 4.5 Stars

The Second Murder at the Vicarage by Val McDermid read by Adrian Scarborough: The vicar’s former maid is murdered in his kitchen. Told from the POV of the vicar he’s smart enough to not underestimate Jane and her observations and instincts. Felt very short, but it was fun and classic Jane. Great narration. 4 Stars

Miss Marple Takes Manhattan by Alyssa Cole read by Adjoa Andoh: Miss Marple visits Manhattan to see her nephew, Raymond’s book turned into a play on Broadway. As they go to have a tour behind the scenes, chaos and drama ensues. Of course, Miss Marple’s experiences from her hometown of St. Mary’s Mead help solve the case. I enjoyed this, but it strayed a bit from the Miss Marple I’ve come to know. 3 Stars

The Unraveling by Natalie Haynes read by Imogen Stubbs: A local shopkeeper and farm hand get into a fight and not long after the farm hand is found murdered. The shop keeper and his wife are automatic suspects, but why would they do it? Trust Jane to come to the solution while unraveling yarn. Very Miss Marple. Wonderful narration. 4 Stars

Miss Marple’s Christmas by Ruth Ware read by Alison Steadman: Miss Marple spends Christmas at the Bantry’s and has to help solve a theft that threatens to sully not only the Bantry’s name, but a servant’s as well. Classic Miss Marple and I loved that some of the past characters were included! Great narration. 5 Stars

The Open Mind by Naomi Alderman read by Jodhi May- Miss Marple solving the murder of an unlikable academic while at a dinner at a founder’s dinner at a college. Interesting mystery but parts felt hard to believe. Loved Ms. May’s accents, but she sounded young for Miss Marple. 3 Stars

The Jade Empress by Jean Kwok read by Chipo Chung: Miss Marple on a cruise helps solve the murder of an elder Chinese man traveling with his daughter and a companion/health care giver (?). Great narration. 3.5 Stars
A Deadly Wedding Day by Dreda Say Mitchell read by Cathy Tyson: Miss Marple attend a wedding of her old friend, Miss Bella’s niece. At the wedding an unexpected guess causes some trouble and there’s a murder. I don’t remember Miss Bella from A Caribbean Mystery, but they met on the island of St. Honoré while Miss Marple solved another murder. Miss Bella turns out to be an excellent sleuthing partner. Classic Miss Marple and Kathy Tyson did a fantastic job with all the accents!  4 Stars

The Mystery of the Acid Soil by Kate Mosse read by Celia Imrie: Miss Marple shares a train car with a young man traveling to the same village, distraught over the disappearance of his girl. Another classic Miss Marple with an enjoyable narration. 4 Stars
Murder at the Villa Rosa by Elly Griffiths read by Ramon Tikeram: Told from the POV of Felix Jeffries, author of a popular mystery series having a problem with his main character. Set at a gorgeous hotel in Italy. Sounded lovely! The mystery and explanation were kind of bizarre to me. Enjoyed the narration. 3 Stars

The Murdering Sort by Karen M. McManus read by Tanya Reynolds: Miss Marple and her great niece, Nicola, tackle the murder a friend’s grandfather just after he’s proclaimed that the family wants him dead for his money. Another fun, classic Miss Marple! Loved Tanya Reynolds performance even if she did sound young for Miss Marple. 5 Stars
The Disappearance by Leigh Bardugo read by Miriam Margolyes: Miss Marple is urgently called back to St. Mary’s Mead by her friend Dolly Bantry after the disappearance of one of her lodgers causes chaos. There’s also the apparent suicide of a student that raises questions. Enjoyed the narration. 4 Stars

Book Description:

A brand-new collection of short stories featuring the Queen of Mystery’s legendary detective Jane Marple, penned by 12 remarkable best-selling and acclaimed authors.

This collection of 12 original short stories, all featuring Jane Marple, will introduce the character to a whole new generation. Each author reimagines Agatha Christie’s Marple through their own unique perspective while staying true to the hallmarks of a traditional mystery.

■ Naomi Alderman
■ Leigh Bardugo
■ Alyssa Cole
■ Lucy Foley
■ Elly Griffiths
■ Natalie Haynes
■ Jean Kwok
■ Val McDermid
■ Karen M. McManus
■ Dreda Say Mitchell
■ Kate Mosse
■ Ruth Ware

Miss Marple was first introduced to fans in a story Agatha Christie wrote for 'The Royal Magazine' in 1927 and made her first appearance in a full-length novel in 1930’s 'The Murder at the Vicarage'. It has been 45 years since Agatha Christie’s last Marple novel, 'Sleeping Murder', was published posthumously in 1976, and this collection of ingenious new stories by 12 Christie devotees will be a timely reminder why Jane Marple remains the most famous fictional female detective of all time.


  1. I really enjoyed these. I decided not to wait for the audio because a friend wanted to buddy read. We rated most of these similarly. Excellent short reviews!

    Anne - Books of My Heart

  2. Sounds like a fun way to learn more about Marple. I've only read one of her actual books - read way more Poirot.

    Lauren @

  3. Reimagining Miss Marple with so many different authors is such a fun idea. :D

  4. Looks like you enjoyed this collection.

  5. So many wonderful authors! I'm so glad you enjoyed it.

  6. I need to read this. Great mini reviews, Rachel :)

  7. Lucy Foley and Karen McManus among the authors here- this sounds great!

  8. I have never read a book by Christie. I was happy to see McManus' story rated so high for you (someone who is a fan of AG's). McManus is about the only mystery writer I read. Looks like it was a decent collection. Lot of new authors there for me

  9. I can't wait to read these. I too loved Miss Marple, she is my favourite Christie sleugth.

  10. I've been wondering about this book. Glad to hear it was a good listen. I will see if my library gets a copy before using an audible credit. Nice review, Rachel.