Time to Celebrate Dorothy L Sayers
and her creations
Harriet Vane and Lord Peter Wimsey!
The World's Best Crime - Mystery Fiction
I need to start this piece on Dorothy L Sayers with a brief explanation that my knowledge of this wonderful author has come mostly from the brilliant performances of Ian Carmichael, both in the BBC Radio dramatizations and the exceptional unabridged narrations. I have also enjoyed the, almost perfect, TV productions with Edward Petherbridge and Harriet Walters.
That having been said, my task is more to give you the tools to seek out the brilliant entertainment that these titles offer rather than to in any way outline matters of biographical interest. So I will restrict myself to just a few words and leave the rest to the experts.
A Very Brief Overview of Her Life
Dorothy Leigh Sayers was born in Oxford in 1893 and brought up in the Fenland where her father was Rector of Bluntisham, near Huntingdon. She was educated privately and also at the Godolphin School in Salisbury. As a scholar at Somerville College, Oxford she gained a First in Modern Languages and subsequently worked for Blackwells who published her early poetry. In 1926 she married journalist O.A. Fleming. After teaching briefly in several schools and spending a year in France she became a copywriter at S.H. Bensons in London where she was associated with two famous advertising campaigns: The Mustard Club and the Guiness Toucan.
In 1923 she introduced Lord Peter Wimsey to the world in her first novel Whose Body? In the rank of the Golden Age detective novelists she succeeded G.K. Chesterton as President of the Detection Club. One aspect of her writing that marks it as classic detective fiction is the well-researched background of her novels. She drew on her personal experience of the advertising world for Murder Must Advertise and the artists of Kircudbright for Five Red Herrings. In The Nine Tailors, her childhood knowledge of the Fenland formed the background for the novel, whilst her time as a student at Oxford was drawn upon for Gaudy Night. The Unpleasantness at the Bellona Club demonstrated her knowledge of shellshock. After Busman's Honeymoon, the last of her completed Wimsey novels, she turned to drama, writing two plays for the Canterbury Festival. In 1941, she completed the major achievement of her life, The Man Born To Be King: twelve radio plays on the life of Christ.
Finally, she turned to translating Dante's Divine Comedy. She completed the first two books but died in 1957 before finishing the third. It was completed posthumously by her friend and biographer, Barbara Reynolds.
For the source on Dorothy L Sayers there is none better than The Dorothy L Sayers Society website. I have spent many happy hours looking through the fascinating information held by these excellent and dedicated devotees of all things D.L.S.! I can only suggest that you pop over to their website at http://www.sayers.org.uk/ (this link will open their website in a new window) and take a look for yourselves.
Major Changes Are Happening
Before I go any further I think it only fair that I cast light on a change that has occurred in the world of downloadable audiobooks. Even though this does not directly effect the world of physical (real) audiobooks it's consequences have already been felt.UPDATE - When I wrote this text I could not have know quite how quickly this might have happened. The prices of these books on Amazon has recently DOUBLED. Please beware the prices of these books are only likely to go in one direction.
As you may well know Amazon/Audible (Audible is a wholly owned subsidiary of Amazon) are the largest audio bookshop in the world. What you may not know is that they adjust their offerings on a regular basis. An example of this is that they have, over the last few years, removed almost all the Ian Carmichael Unabridged performances. As I write, 1st March 2017, only 1 of these wonderful performances is still available in the UK. What this means is that these recordings are very likely to become exceptionally rare/expensive. Currently we are having to look much further afield in order to find this brilliant productions.
I have laid out the different offerings and formats we have to offer below.
Due to the nature of our business the titles below will change. If you wish to be notified of any new titles that may be coming into stock or if you are looking for a particular title, do not hesitate to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
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