A Different Class of Murder: The Story of Lord Lucan

Laura Thompson

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A Different Class of Murder: The Story of Lord Lucan

A Different Class of Murder The Story of Lord Lucan On November a nanny named Sandra Rivett was bludgeoned to death in a Belgravia basement A second woman Veronica Countess of Lucan was also attacked The man named in court as perpetrator of

  • Title: A Different Class of Murder: The Story of Lord Lucan
  • Author: Laura Thompson
  • ISBN: 9781781855386
  • Page: 305
  • Format: Paperback
  • On 7 November 1974, a nanny named Sandra Rivett was bludgeoned to death in a Belgravia basement A second woman, Veronica, Countess of Lucan, was also attacked The man named in court as perpetrator of these crimes, Richard John Bingham, 7th Earl of Lucan, disappeared in the early hours of the following morning The case, solved in the eyes of the law, has retained its fasOn 7 November 1974, a nanny named Sandra Rivett was bludgeoned to death in a Belgravia basement A second woman, Veronica, Countess of Lucan, was also attacked The man named in court as perpetrator of these crimes, Richard John Bingham, 7th Earl of Lucan, disappeared in the early hours of the following morning The case, solved in the eyes of the law, has retained its fascination ever since.Laura Thompson, acclaimed biographer of Agatha Christie, narrates the story that led up to that cataclysmic event, and draws on her considerable forensic skills to re examine the possible truths behind one of postwar Britain s most notorious murders A DIFFERENT CLASS OF MURDER is a portrait of an era, of an extraordinary cast of characters, of a mystery, of a modern myth Part social history, part detective story, it tells in masterly style one of the great tales of our collective living memory.

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      305 Laura Thompson
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      Posted by:Laura Thompson
      Published :2018-012-09T21:57:23+00:00

    One thought on “A Different Class of Murder: The Story of Lord Lucan

    1. Susan on said:

      This book takes an in depth look at the mysterious disappearance of Lord Lucan in 1974 after the murder of his children’s nanny, Sandra Rivett, and an attack on his estranged wife, Veronica. The events surrounding the murder are shocking and make riveting reading, but this book sometimes suffers from a rather confused and muddled account of the facts. The beginning of the book is a rather incoherent and rambling list of virtually all aristocrats convicted of murder, especially if they are link [...]

    2. Jane on said:

      On 7 November 1974 Sandra Rivett, 29, was bludgeoned to death in the basement of a house at 46 Lower Belgrave Street, London. A second woman, Veronica, Countess of Lucan, was also attacked and she survived to name her estranged husband, Richard John Bingham, 7th Earl of Lucan, as the man who assaulted her.He would, in his absence, be named in court as perpetrator of both of these crimes, but he would never be tried. Because the last confirmed sighting of Lord Lucan was in the early hours of the [...]

    3. F.R. on said:

      The Lord Lucan case is one hard-wired into the British psyche. Degenerate gambler aristocrat murders his children’s nanny when he mistakes her for his wife and then disappears into the night. It’s a rare sitcom of the last thirty years which hasn’t made a joke about something being as unlikely as seeing Lord Lucan riding Shergar. Yet the actual detail of the case is something most people wouldn’t have given a lot of thought to. Of course this peer who disappeared right after the murder i [...]

    4. Gerry on said:

      There have been so many books about the Lord Lucan affair that when this one came out the immediate thought could well have been, 'Not another one'. However Laura Thompson's story of the affair is quite different except that, like every other book on the subject, there is no definitive answer to it all at the end of day.'A Different Class of Murder' is divided into two distinct parts, the story and the investigation. In the former the author explores the chequered history of the Lucan line in su [...]

    5. Saturday's Child on said:

      Lord Lucan and the many myths surrounding him and the death of Sandra Rivett have been well researched and written about by Laura Thompson.

    6. Aoife on said:

      After 5 hours of the 15 hour audiobook I had learned:- about all murders aristocrats had committed and were tried (but rarely convicted for) in the last few centuries- the history of the Lucan family since ca 1500- the history of gambling in general, and aristocratic gambling clubs in particular- various headline-grabbing murders committed by servants and middle-class people in the late 19th and early to mid-20th centuryIn between all that there was also a bit about Lord Lucan's biography and th [...]

    7. Damaskcat on said:

      I remember the Lord Lucan case from 1974 but I had a lot going on in my own life at the time and I couldn't remember very much about it so I was pleased to read this book. Overall the book is well written and meticulously researched. I do have one criticism of it and that is that the introduction contains so much information it is very confusing to read. I'm tempted to suggest that if you feel you are getting bogged down in the introduction that you leave it and go on to the main part of the boo [...]

    8. Corvida on said:

      This was an entertaining book with a lot of historical information. There’s actually a section in here of all the peers who were tried for murder. Eleven, in the past 500 years. The subject of this book, Lord Lucan, was named a murderer by an inquest jury, but he disappeared and was never tried. (Or heard from again.)In 1974, Lord Lucan was a throwback to Georgian earls. He lived a dissolute life of gambling all night. Photos of the 7th earl (our Lord Lucan) and a painting of the 3rd earl (180 [...]

    9. Amanda on said:

      An entirely satisfactory true crime story about the Lord Lucan case and one I couldn't keep my nose out of. This book was a purchase I would not normally have made, but my curiosity was piqued after I saw the author Laura Thompson speak at Adelaide Writers Week.I don't recall this aristocratic scandal having very much impact on me here in Australia at the time it happened, but if I've ever given it any thought I've more or less assumed that Lucan was guilty. However, this brilliantly researched [...]

    10. Kerrie Dodds on said:

      Educational but boringI really enjoyed the concept of this book. However, the phrase of flogging a dead horse in this story is so true. Yes do get the class war.t book ever I could not finish. I went to the internet to research the characters. What I found was more directke the children had not talked to Veronica for so long.e missed everything a mother would not want to. For 3 children to be so estranged for so long, there is something fundamentally wrong. The author was thorougho thorough the [...]

    11. Gayle Noble on said:

      If you can get past the first two chapters which do tend to drag a little in places, once you get into the details of the case itself, the book is rather interesting. The author does a nice job of discussing the forensic and witness evidence and detailing four alternative explanations. I feel that one of these in particular is probably very close to the truth. One minor gripe: the author does seem to have a bee in her bonnet about prejudice against the upper classes, which gets more irritating, [...]

    12. Xanthi on said:

      This is a dense read, packed with a lot of detail - probably too much detail, and it often got confusing as to who was who, what happened, who said what, etc. There is also a lot of social commentary and historical background, which I have no objection to, but felt it could have been condensed. In the end, it felt like I was reading a comprehensive Phd thesis. Narrative non-fiction, this isn't.As to the author's hypothesis, as to what might have actually happened that night, why, and what happen [...]

    13. Antonia Mandry on said:

      A deeply frustrating book. Any good ideas (such as the final theory) are lost in a morass of bias (bending over backwards to try to give Lucan the benefit of the doubt, and very pro-his friends) and bizarre comparisons with fiction, such as the author's continual references to Agatha Christie and Midsomer Murders, thus making it more likely that the author's theory will likewise be dismissed as fiction. I usually burn through books quickly, even bad ones, but this was so frustrating and annoying [...]

    14. Mary on said:

      Great read!I love this book. I was vaguely familiar with the Lucan saga. This book does a wonderful job of telling what did happen and what might have happened. The author gives the facts and is clear about what is conjecture. It helps a lot that she puts it all in the context of England in the 1970s and of the family and social structure.Good writing and a fun read.

    15. Maureen on said:

      I was a bit frustrated at the beginning of this book by the author's insistence on repeating her opinions numerous times in slightly different words, but I must have got used to it or else the power of the Lucan story overcame the annoyance. This book is obviously well researched with many opportunities given for further study of the topic. The more I read the more I was uncomfortable with the decision of the coroner's court jury. Perhaps many people were, as this type of jury, in which a person [...]

    16. Ellen on said:

      Liked this! Still not sure whodunnit - but a really good read and I liked the little ‘gothicky’ twist at the end. P

    17. Stephanie Patterson on said:

      I have for some months now subscribed to electronic versions of The Times Literary Supplement and The London Review of Books. The big controversy in the letters columns recently has been a heated discussion over who has done the most accurate translations of Proust. These publications rarely, if ever, review mysteries so I was surprised when both of them gave lots of space and serious attention to Laura Thompson’s new book about the Lord Lucan case,A Different Class of Murder.Lord Lucan, peer [...]

    18. Emma on said:

      Maybe it’s being a child of the 70’s but I have always been slightly fascinated by Lord Lucan and the fact that he disappeared so completely after so obviously (or so I thought) killing his nanny when he meant to be killing his wife. Maybe it’s that his name still appears in the papers, magazines and books regularly as people try and figure out just where he went after that fateful night.Whatever the reason for my fascination I’ve never not read an article I’ve come across but till now [...]

    19. Maryann MJS1228 on said:

      Most true crime buffs know the story of Lord Lucan and the nanny. The aristocratic gambler tried to drive his wife insane then decided to simply kill his wife but botched the job killing the nanny by mistake. "Lucky" Lucan then went on the run, aided by his wicked friends from the Clermont Club. That, as author Laura Thompson would say, is the myth. It's a myth that has powered countless books, fiction and non-fiction, as well as many a journalistic boondoggle to track down the latest Lucan siti [...]

    20. Annie Booker on said:

      It didn't really tell me anything I didn't already know or suspect though it certainly presents Lord Lucan in a somewhat kinder light than some books on the case.

    21. Jamie Rose on said:

      A Different Class Of MurderThis was interesting, it doesn't focus only on the murder and subsequent disappearance of Lucan. I think if you are looking for one of those dramatic true crime books, with plenty of lurid details and glossy crime scene photos this isn't for you, on the other hand, if you're not a fan of true crime of that style, you'd probably find this interesting.There are quite extensive chapters on the history of the Lucan family and the evolution of London casinos. It gives a goo [...]

    22. Karen on said:

      As with pretty much everyone who knows the name Lord Lucan I was sure that I knew what happened the night that the nanny Sandra Rivett was murdered and I was equally sure that he was a guilty as sin. After reading this I'm not so sure, and if he had stayed to be questioned and possibly stand trial then based on the evidence there would have been a very good chance of a not guilty verdict. Lucan is presumed to be the man responsible as he was named by the coroner's court and also because everythi [...]

    23. Kristen on said:

      This book about a murder -- and infamous missing person's case -- in London's upper crust is so boring, it's more likely to incite readers to murder than it is to inform or entertain. The first 2/3 of the book gets bogged down in establishing, in the most wordy and opinionated way, that Lord Lucan, his wife, and most of their friends are self-involved twits. The final third describes how helpful it is to have loyal, rich friends.

    24. Hannah Cook on said:

      It was a bit slow to get going. Too much ancestral research. It seems like the author felt the poor aristocrat was hard done by, what with being judged for being an aristocrat. And she casts doubt as to whether he did it. But eventually concluded he probably hired a hitman. Soooo, hard to feel that sorry for him really.

    25. Nicholas Smith on said:

      Years ago I read Trail of Havoc by Patrick Marnham which very much gave the view that Lucan was guilty; in contrast this much more nuanced and rounded account allows you to see the world in which he lived and the relationships he had before drawing out any conclusions. One of the best true crime books I have read, highly recommended.

    26. Nicola on said:

      Not sure about this book. There's a lot of railing against the aristocracy and a huge amount of repetition. As far as I can see there was no new information (happy to be proved wrong) just a rehash of the last 40 years.

    27. Candace on said:

      Thompson's study of the English Lord Lucan murder case provides a compelling meditation on class and prejudice.

    28. Wilde Sky on said:

      The facts related to a notorious murder case are presented in this book.This book was quite interesting and I did learn some details about the case, but it was long winded and a bit repetitive.

    29. Emma Peel on said:

      well researched, padded out a bit with random quotes from Agatha Christie etc which slowed the flow of the text and felt awkward.

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