Thursday, August 3, 2023

He Laughed at Murder by Richard Keverne -- BOOK BEGINNINGS


I don't usually show my face on the blog, but I was having fun organizing my vintage Penguins and snapped this picture. 

During the 2020 lockdown, I did a little retail therapy in lieu of a vacation and bought a job lot of over 400 vintage green tribands. Early Penguin books were published in "triband" editions, with a color stripe, white stripe, color stripe. Different colors were used for different sorts of books. The Penguin orange tribands were general fiction and literature, for example. Green tribands were mystery and crime. 

Shortly after I got the set, I started a trial (by zoom because it was lockdown) that lasted for six weeks. I put the tribands in boxes to await new bookshelves. I got the bookshelves last year, but by that time had forgotten that I had not entered all the books into my master LibaryThing spreadsheet. I only recently remembered and started entering them. It takes a long time because the books don't have bar codes or ISBN numbers. Here's the stack I entered today. 


Ahead of him the Great East Road stretched away into a misty distance, a broad, black ribbon shining in the winter sun.

-- from He Laughed at Murder by Richard Keverne. 

I grabbed this one because it was o the top of the stack. Richard Keverne is unknown today -- there isn't even the shortest Wikipedia article about him -- and his books are out of print. But he must have been popular back in the 1930 - 1950 period when he wrote mysteries because my copies of his books are all reprints. 

Most of the green tribands in my collection are by authors still read today, like Agatha Christie, Margery Allingham, Ngaio Marsh. I love those, of course, but I am also fascinated by the random books by authors who have disappeared from popular culture.


Please leave the link to your Book Beginnings post in the box below. If you share on social media, please use the hashtag #bookbeginnings.  

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Freda at Freda's Voice hosts another teaser event on Fridays. Participants share a two-sentence teaser from page 56 of the book they are reading -- or from 56% of the way through the audiobook or ebook. Please visit Freda's Voice for details and to leave a link to your post.


From He Laughed at Murder:

Men were absurdly stupid when women flattered them so brazenly. And Michael was more stupid than she had expected.

From these snippets, I am curious about this book. Would you read it?


  1. The snippets have my interest. I would read it.

  2. You had me at the title. These teasers are interesting, and I'm sorry to hear that the book isn't easily available since I'm curious about it.

  3. Yes I'd read it - it's a pity I can't!

  4. Your book sounds fascinating! If I could get my hands on it, I'd read it.

  5. Hope you love it!! Happy weekend!

  6. That excerpt makes me curious. How interesting about the Penguin books. I didn't know any of it. :)

  7. Thank you for sharing the story behind that books. That is really cool. It is odd to think that some authors work just disappears. I hope you enjoy this one and the others when you get a chance to read them all.


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