➜ [KINDLE] ❆ Not in the Flesh By Ruth Rendell ➦ – Horse-zine.co.uk


10 thoughts on “Not in the Flesh

  1. says:

    In this 21st book in the Inspector Wexford series, the detective investigates two old murders that have just come to light The book can be read as a standalone A long buried body is unearthed in Flagford, England on the property of grouchy John Grimble and Chief Inspector Wexford and his team investigate The detectives learn that Grimble dug a trench eleven years before to prepare the property for additional homes Denied permission to build the houses an incensed Grimble filled in the trench which by then apparently contained a dead body Soon afterwards another set of human remains is found on Grimble s property, in his old abandoned home This body appears to have died about eight years before Much of the story involves the detectives trying to figure out the identity of the dead people, and then discovering who killed them To do this they need to question all the people living around the area at the relevant times This includes old Grimble himself the writer Owen Tredown an author with one successful and several mediocre books Tredown s wife and ex wife two controlling women both of whom live with the author and elderly Irene McNeil a snobby bigot who previously resided across from the Grimble house These characters are well wrought and believable.A side story concerns the population of Somalis in the region, and their tradition of female circumcision Wexford spurred on by his daughter and child health advocates tries to prevent a Somali family from performing this horrific procedure which is illegal in England on their little girl This is a serious and worthy issue but it felt like an add on that didn t really fit with the mystery story at the heart of the book.Much of the book consists of detectives searching through missing persons files and questioning and re questioning persons of interest Little by little they discover information that leads to the resolution of the case The story s climax seemed somewhat unlikely and wasn t totally satisfying Many of Rendell s other books are better this is just an okay mystery You can follow my reviews at


  2. says:

    This was a perfectly pleasant read but not especially exciting Inspector Wexford is always such a calm person and everything proceeds at such an even pace In this particular book even the deaths are historical and therefore not dangerous or threatening Some police work and a lot of coincidences bring the cases to a successful close although there is a bit of a red herring towards the end which made this reader think she had guessed the wrong answer only to find out later it was actually correct Nicely written, easy to read, a good way to spend a quiet afternoon


  3. says:

    This book was dire The main problem is not the basic plot, although I found that a bit confused, it s the issues the book goes on about in a stupid and sometimes offensive way His taste ran to the colours which suited black skin, those which perhaps only a black man could successfully wear red, orange, yellow, bright green Black was a no no Funny, I m sure I ve seen black people wearing black clothes than bright green I ve also seen plenty of non black people wearing those colours and looking fine.Hannah, one of the police officers, is deeply annoying, but what is annoying is that the author has made her so annoying It s completely over the top and endlessly repetitive A sample Hannah thought she looked like a Native American, what her mother had told her would once have been called a Red Indian, and her politically correct soul shuddered at that Another sample, between her and Wexford He d have been wiser and safer if he d thrown it on a bonfire Put it in the recycling, guv, said Hannah in a reproving tone Ruth Rendell is normally pretty reliable for a good, solid mystery, although her other books have often been similarly irritating in their musings on class, gender, and race In this one, the annoyingness outweighed the fairly weak plot Not one I recommend.


  4. says:

    This one was great I listened to this on CD, narrated by Simon Vance First of all, the narration was spot on, and the complexity and variety of voices, accents, inflections, all of it, were superb I will look for books, especially by Rendell, which are narrated by Mr Vance.The storyTwo bodies are found in a wooded area owned by a man, Grimble, who has inherited the land and wants to build four houses on it He even started a drainage ditch before he gets approval to build However, after approval is turned down, he has a friend fill in the ditch but not before, and unbeknownst to anyone the body of man is put in the ditch with a light cover of soil over it The years go by and a truffle hunting dog discovers the bodyOf course this case goes right to Inspector Reginald Wexford, his cohort Mike Burden and all the other officers and investigators who work with Wexford It s a great story which doesn t slowly become solved so much as it quickly becomes complex The body has been in the ground or ditch at least ten years, but to muddy up matters a second body is discovered in the old bungalow on the property Said bungalow has been left to just deteriorate since Grimble is thoroughly irate, disappointed, upset, livid all of it as he cannot build on the property So, in the middle of a somewhat orderly police investigation involving missing persons and lots of interviews with interesting characters, this second body complicates things further This poor fellow has been dead about eight years Two bodies of two men, killed or murdered at different times under possibly different circumstances Things get even muddier as the investigation proceeds with so many eccentric suspects, witnesses and nearby neighbors who might know or have seen something that unless the reader or listener as I did the audio CD pays close attention they wouldn t know what the heck is going on I loved it It was so complex, so rich with characterization There is also a subplot involving Wexford s daughters and a little girl which is equally compelling It doesn t detract from the main storyline, but it could have been its own novel in and of itself.One of my favorite Wexford novels I loved it.


  5. says:

    My life has become so much better since I accepted Ruth Rendell as my personal savior.


  6. says:

    Ruth Rendell is a very good writer She creates three dimensional characters, brings her settings and scenarios to life, and pulls the reader into her stories Unfortunately, though, Not in the Flesh is not a very intriguing mystery There were too many disparate story lines, too many giant coincidences, too much time between the murder and the discovery of the body eleven years for witness recollections to be believable Who remembers seeing a stranger wearing a particular T shirt after eleven years The coincidences the author relies on a book about a missing man just happens to be excerpted in the paper right after the body is discovered, the detective s daughter just happens to be starring in a movie based on a book that figures in the murder plot to help the police unravel the mystery are hard to believe, which doesn t really make for an involving plot The author also tries a red herring that does not work at all The police pursue a particular solution to the mystery which the reader is apparently also supposed to believe but it is quite obvious what the real solution is So when the story line pivots to the true solution, the only surprise is that it took so long for the police to figure it out A good deal of the book is taken up with the problem of Somali immigrants in England continuing their abhorrent practice of genital mutilation, and the police efforts to stop it I appreciate the author bringing attention to it, but in her efforts to show how counterproductive political correctness is in the face of this practice, she makes the female police officers in the story ridiculous Overall, I would probably give the story 2.5 stars if I could because even though I didn t like the plot, the quality of the writing is impeccable.


  7. says:

    Reading a book starring Chief Inspector Reginald Wexford this is the 21st in the series is like a long visit with an old friend Like the rest of us, Wexford is aging and the process has turned him into a grumpy older man He is forever frustrating his adult daughter and his wife, he hates anything to do with computers and the internet, and thinks that the world has become overfamiliar In this latest adventure, a truffle sniffing dog who is trespassing with his master finds a dead body instead of a truffle The only problem is that the body has been dead for 11 years A very entertaining mystery filled with very entertaining characters who could resist the sci fi, fantasy writer with two wives who is dying, but is forced to keep writing to keep his wives in the style to which they have become accustomed There s where he came from I have no idea how many of this series I have read I need to go back and fill in the voids.


  8. says:

    Another enjoyable Wexford mystery A man and his dog out truffle hunting find a body Wexford investigates who is the mysterious skeleton and how they were murdered Then another body is found Most of the plot is finding out the identities of the bodies A famous dying novelist called Tredown house overlooks the derelict bungalow and field where the bodies were found Wexford asks him and his two wives he lived with if they saw anything One of the woman Claudia is his ex wife and Maeve his current wife An interesting dad set up A manuscript is involved There is also a sub plot about female circumcision Matea a Somalian waitress at an India restaurant is worried about her five year old sister An easy read as always with the Wexford series with a few red herrings thrown in.


  9. says:

    Haven t read Ruth Rendell in a while, and this novel reminded me exactly why I usually avoid her Don t get me wrong, the plot was not all that bad although, it had some very far fetched points and some very unrealistic motivation behind some of the characters actions But maybe, if the main case had been given attention, I wouldn t have thought this Unfortunately, it was almost buried by secondary storylines I get it, Rendell wants to address important issues of society I understand that But why bring an issue completely unrelated to the main plot and give it so much time In a detective story, this does nothing but distract from the main plot The reader is left dissatisfied and whatever point the author was trying to make about that issue is completely lost anyway The main problem, though and this I noticed in other Rendell books as well, is with her characters I don t know if she made them deliberately unlikable or notbut man, are they unlikable Wexford used to be at least tolerable, but in this book we were treated to his many dislikes he doesn t like Halloween, he doesn t like fantasy books he s said that repeatedly, funny how people who don t like a literary genre feel the need to point it out with every breath Then there s Hannah, and don t get me started on her She s like a caricature Again, I wondered if it s deliberate, but somehow I suspect it isn t Last there s Rendell s constant mention of political correctness which is again present in all of her books and which spoils them for me quite a lot And I don t mean it s not an important thing and shouldn t be dealt with But when you throw it randomly at the reader at the most inopportune times, just to prove you know political correctness is a thing, well, then the book s quality drops Considerably Pity, Rendell would be quite entertaining if she just stuck to writing mysteries.


  10. says:

    Another hard to put down book by master mystery writer, Ruth Rendall This one centers around a cold case from 11 years before Enter Inspector Wexford and the fun begins.


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  • Hardcover
  • 303 pages
  • Not in the Flesh
  • Ruth Rendell
  • English
  • 10 December 2019
  • 9780307406811