6 April 2012

Forgotten Book: THE SECRET OF ANNEXE 3, Colin Dexter

For many of my contributions this year to Pattinase's Friday's Forgotten Books  I am going to focus on the books I read 20 years ago in 1992. By then my reading diet was almost exclusively crime fiction.

I think that by the beginning of 1992 I had already "discovered" the Morse series but looking down the 1992 page I can see 3 in 3 months, indeed for the whole year, an average of one a month.

THE SECRET OF ANNEXE 3 is #7 in the Inspector Morse series, published in 1986.

Synopsis (Fantastic Fiction)
'Morse sought to hide his disappointment. So many people in the Haworth Hotel that fatal evening had been wearing some sort of disguise - a change of dress, a change of make-up, a change of partner, a change of attitude, a change of life almost: and the man who had died had been the most consummate artist of them all...' Chief inspector Morse seldom allowed himself to be caught up in New Year celebrations. So the murder inquiry in the festive hotel had a certain appeal. It was a crime worthy of the season. The corpse was still in fancy dress. And hardly a single guest at the Haworth had registered under a genuine name...

I was surprised to see that there were in fact only 13 in the series, with the last published in 1999.

The creation of the television series with John Thaw as Morse must have had a huge impact on the popularity of the books, and the author Colin Dexter seems to have had considerable input into the series, to the point of cameo appearances in the background in a wheel chair etc.

Inspector Morse (records from Fantastic Fiction)
1. Last Bus to Woodstock (1975)
2. Last Seen Wearing (1976)
3. The Silent World of Nicholas Quinn (1977)
4. Service of All the Dead (1979)
5. The Dead of Jericho (1981)
6. The Riddle of the Third Mile (1983)
7. The Secret of Annexe 3 (1986)
8. The Wench Is Dead (1989)
9. The Jewel That Was Ours (1989)
10. The Way Through the Woods (1992)
11. The Daughters of Cain (1994)
12. Death Is Now My Neighbour (1996)
13. The Remorseful Day (1999)


Anonymous said...

Kerrie - Oh, you chose such a great novel! Not only does it have a great intellectual puzzle as the Morse novels tend to have, but there are some interesting characters in that one, too. Thanks for reminding me of how dangerous New Year's Eve can be ;-).

Irene said...

I loved this series and I too should read it again.

S. said...

I read my first Morse a couple of years ago after watching the Inspector Lewis series on PBS. I actually think it was this one :)

Sergio (Tipping My Fedora) said...

I did enjoy this book though it is not my favourite by a fair distance. This is the only one of the Dexter books not filmed for the TV series, and I think you can see why given the fairly implausible, and even potentially problematic or anyway politically incorrect, nature of the alibi. It's good fun though and I'm a sucker for Christmas mysteries!

Anonymous said...

I must have read this one about the same time you did, and frankly I don't remember much of it. I love the Morse books, and was lucky to meet and have a nice long talk with Dexter at a sparsely attended book signing for The Daughters of Cain. Fascinating little man, sharp as a tack. I've "saved" the last book in the series for so long I'd forgotten it until your post. What a treat I have in store!

Dorte H said...

Every time I am reminded of Inspector Morse, I feel like reading them all again. And I shall one day; this is a series I´ll never part with :)


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