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Publisher's Summary

DS Wesley Peterson, newly arrived in the West Country town of Tradmouth, has his hands full when a child goes missing and a young woman is brutally murdered on a lonely cliff path.

Then his old friend, archaeologist Neil Watson, unearths the skeletons of a strangled woman and a newborn baby in the cellar of an ancient merchant's house nearby. As the investigation continues, Wesley begins to suspect that these deaths, centuries apart, may be linked by age-old motives of jealousy, a sexual obsession and desperate longing. And the pressure is on if he is going to prevent a further tragedy....

©1998 Kate Ellis (P)2017 Soundings

What listeners say about The Merchant's House

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • JPH
  • 30-01-18

Not a bad story

Enjoyed the unusual story of two murders in different centuries running along side each other.

It's set in Devon but I don't know why the author felt it necessary to change/disguise the place names, Tradmouth = Dartmouth? The river Trad = Dart?

Likeable characters and I look forward to them developing.

There are some twists and turns and it keeps you guessing right up until the end.

A good narration by Gordon Griffiths although reference was often made to Heffernan's Liverpool accent but I didn't hear it! so he must have moved to Devon when he was a small boy!!

Another author to add to my list and I'm looking forward to the next in the series. Recommended.

6 people found this helpful

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  • Flint
  • 27-01-18

Feels very dated

In the end it was quite a good story but it was a bit of an ordeal to listen to because of Gordon Griffin's very odd delivery. He is a competent narrator but he sounds the same in every book he reads and somehow he makes the book feel more dated than it should. The characters in this book were not as well developed as I would have liked which made it hard to follow the plot or to care about what had happened.

7 people found this helpful

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  • Pat Lynch
  • 26-01-20

Pretty average thriller

I didn’t find this book unputdownable. It missed the wow factor of a really good read. The two crimes centuries apart was interesting. I like Gordon Griffiths narration. I would probably read the next book in the series.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Phyllis Adams
  • 21-01-19

The merchants house.

Excellent story, I loved the way the present and the past came together. Will certainly want to read more from this author.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Joe
  • 27-05-18

Thoroughly engrossing

This is an engrossing story with links in the storyline from the past to the present action.
The underlying themes of love, lust and compassion were well presented.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Mr S J Aitken
  • 19-12-20

Great Read

I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Really interesting plot and the two storylines were really well brought together. I have started here on purpose being the first book, I will continue listening to the series. I agree with another reviewer that the narrator's accents are a little off, but his storytelling is good nonetheless.

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  • Diane Walmsley
  • 11-12-20

comfortable listen

an enjoyable listen which did keep you going although the plot was easily guessed, the narration was clear but i found some of the characters sounded to much the same for my ear

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  • WallE
  • 02-03-19

Be careful of our wants and needs

Kate Ellis is new me and I believe she is a good find to my list of crime writers. This is good old fashioned storytelling with a strong story line and coppers who for once have ordinary concerns, not overly complicated back stories or maverick tendencies but nevertheless tenacious. It is sad tale which makes us all questions how far we would go to fulfil our dreams. I am not usually fussed by stories with a historical bent, however, Ellis manages deftly with her interwoven stories to bring relevance to the present from the past. Gordon Griffin, narrator, captured both the story in the current day and the past beautifully. He took me along even when I needed to be getting on with other thing!

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  • Lee
  • 21-01-19

The Merchants House

First in a series for me and it’s a good start. Not too taxing on the brain, bit predictable but filled in a few hours nicely. Liked the main characters and the archeological side of things. Will try book 2.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 16-11-18

Truly dreadful book

Poor story, poor narration. Will not be revisiting this author unfortunately did not like it at all.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Babs59
  • 03-08-19

quirky but enjoyable

Hard to keep track of the many characters and their stories but I was happy to keep listening to the end.