My rating: 3 of 5 stars
In any long mystery series (this is book #9 I believe) there is always one book that lets you down. This is that book. Don’t get me wrong. It’s not a horrible book. As far as the mystery part of it goes, it was a good mystery but it was a weak Maisie Dobbs book in general. It was a two-part semi-failure for me for two reasons, the murders are political in nature and takes you to a place, without spoiling it, that you realize what the ending has to be (and it’s an unappetizing ending) before you get to it and secondly, Maisie’s personal life takes up a good third if not more of the book and it’s a mess.
As far as the mystery itself goes, it was a good one. Maisie is approached by a group of costermongers that she knew as a kid, through her father. A man that she knew as a boy has been killed horribly, Eddie Petit. Eddie was able to calm just about any horse and he did odd jobs as well. Eddie is a bit slow but an all around good guy. The men don’t believe it was an accidental death and want Maisie to look into it. It doesn’t take her long to agree with them and it seems like Eddie’s death might be tied into the supposed suicide of Bart, a news reporter.
As Maisie looks into this, things go badly for her partner Billy and it soon leads her to Otterburn, a political manipulator and newspaper owner. The more she uncovers the more political it gets especially with the rise of Hitler and beginning of Churchill’s career. And this is where I got a little bored with it because I hate politics but that’s more my fault than the book’s. But the mystery more or less resolves nearly fifty pages from the end and it ambles around in Maisie’s mess of a personal life.
This book could have been so much better without her personal life. Yes we needed to see her dealing with inheriting a lot of wealth AND dating James when she had started out years ago as a maid in his mother’s house. However, it goes on forever and it’s not interesting. In fact, it’s annoying. It’s repetitive and frankly why even bring James into this just to yank him back out if that is what’s going to happen? I could go on here but I think I’ve made my point. It was enough to move these books from the buy list to the get it at the library list.
View all my reviews