The Woman in the Alcove

  • by Anna Katharine Green
  • Narrated by Lee Ann Howlett
  • 6 hrs and 44 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

During a high society party set in New York City in the early 1900s, a beautiful woman is murdered and her precious diamond stolen. A young woman attending the party had just accepted a marriage proposal from a handsome young man. Unfortunately, the young man is the prime suspect in the murder due to circumstantial evidence. From there, the story takes many twists and turns before the identity of the killer is finally revealed.
Anna Katharine Green was one of the first writers of detective fiction in the US and was known for the legal accuracy of her stories.


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

An interesting but convoluted story.

What did you love best about The Woman in the Alcove?

The best aspect of the novel was the fact it was unknown - a 'lost classic', so to speak. But then again, there are reasons that some old books aren't better known.

How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

The language was far too purple, but then that was exactly what people expected at the turn of last century so it isn't completely fair for me to criticise it on that basis. But I got very tired of the fact that anything that could be said in one sentence was actually said in a paragraph. It meant the pace was slow and it was easy to drift off.Also, the denouement was so convoluted it actually defied all belief. I felt that a bit of a nod to Ockham's Razor wouldn't have gone astray with this book.Sadly, I didn't warm to the main character at all. I don't know whether it was the language, the narrator or simply the story, but I felt pretty hostile to Rita the whole way through.

Have you listened to any of Lee Ann Howlett’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

No, I haven't. But her performance was good and her accent felt true to life. Accents are the thing that make or break a performance for me and my pet hate is when narrators try to do accents foreign to their own and fail at it. I felt myself getting ready to cringe at the British accent, but fortunately the narrator felt it best not to really attempt it. That definitely raised the quality of the performance for me (I am British/Australian, so it is very noticeable to me when either of those accents are done badly).

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Not really, but that was because of the language and the very slow pace. I was curious as to what happened, but I knew it would take a while to get there.

Any additional comments?

I was provided this audiobook at no charge by the author, publisher and/or narrator in exchange for an unbiased review via Audiobook Boom

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- Nancy Williams

A rather flat mystery

I didn't overly care for this book. Perhaps it is a product of the time it was written, but I found it to be quite flat overall. The main character wasn't very well-rounded and seemed more like a plot device than an actual character. She took very little action herself and mostly just seemed to be someone who either overheard or was told different parts of the story. I really wanted to care for her plight and to care whether or not her fiance would be found innocent, but what I felt at the end of the story was just relief that it was over. (And yet, I did still find myself compelled to listen until the end, to find out what had really happened.)

The audiobook narrator was okay. At first I found her voice and inflection to also be rather flat, portraying little emotion even in the first scene when the character should have had some emotion. But the more I got into the book, I realized that the fault is with the book itself rather than the audiobook narrator. So she did a good job with what she had to work with.

Note: I was provided this audiobook at no charge by the author, publisher and/or narrator in exchange for an unbiased review via Audiobook Boom.
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- Karen R.

Book Details

  • Release Date: 04-18-2016
  • Publisher: Spoken Realms