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Whom the Gods Love (Julian Kestrel Mystery) Mass Market Paperback – May 1, 1996

4.6 out of 5 stars 56 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Julian Kestrel, introduced in Cut to the Quick, returns again to probe beneath the surface opulence of Regency London society. Until he was bludgeoned to death with a fireplace poker in his own study, charming Alexander Falkland fairly glittered in that society. At the request of the victim's barrister father, Kestrel investigates and finds that the dead man was "far more complicated than most people knew." An erudite correspondence with his father shows that Falkland was a man of depth and intellect; he had also cultivated the socially risky acquaintance of a Jewish investment advisor. Falkland had doted on his beautiful wife, and both humored and neglected his adolescent brother-in-law, who benefits financially from the death. Kestrel works efficiently with Bow Street Runner Peter Vance, who supplies added information about an unidentified woman found murdered only a week before Falkland's death. In a tale as sparkling as champagne (with a dash of arsenic), Ross motivates her characters with human desires ranging from the loftiest intellectual yearnings to the basest physical appetites. Offering this level of entertainment, her dandyish sleuth will never go out of fashion. Author tour.
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From School Library Journal

YA?Julian Kestrel, a debonair man-about-town in early Victorian London, is asked to investigate the murder of Alexander Falkland. The charming aristocratic victim's distraught father turns to Kestrel when it seems that the Bow Street Runners have failed to turn up any clues. Nothing has been taken from the elaborate house, no one could have entered unnoticed in the middle of one of Falkland's famous parties, and everyone professes to have been on the best of terms with the deceased. As Kestrel delves into the case, he begins to find many people without adequate alibis, including Alexander's lovely widow. He is baffled by the solid wall of silence that he encounters; intrigued by the protective behavior of the servants; and, finally, starts to piece together Falkland's true character. With flair and quick-moving drama, the amateur detective is able to make the necessary connection between this murder and that of a servant in an abandoned brickfield. Kestrel, a true man of his times, treads carefully to maintain the correct conventions even as he digs deeply into the London lowlife. In this third novel about Kestrel, Ross builds on and develops her character so that readers recognize his strong personality, thus adding depth and dimension to the story.?Mary T. Gerrity, Queen Anne School Library, Upper Marlboro, MD
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Series: Julian Kestrel Mystery
  • Mass Market Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Books (May 1, 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 014024767X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140247671
  • Product Dimensions: 4.3 x 0.9 x 6.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (56 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #323,226 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I mourn Julian Kestrel, and even more, I mourn Kate Ross, the gifted writer who created him. I would have read ten, twenty or more Kestrel books, but alas, there are only four. In WHOM THE GODS LOVE, Kestrel investigates the death of a "golden boy" who turned out to have a nasty way of ferreting out other people's secrets and turning them to his advantage. The question is, which of Alexander Falkland's many victims finally killed him? Like Anne Perry, the late Ms. Ross touched on the social problems of the time, but her touch was lighter. I recommend WHOM THE GODS LOVE and all the other Kestrel books to anyone who enjoys the work of Anne Perry and Dorothy L. Sayers.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
As I read this historical mystery, I kept wondering why I had not previously heard of Kate Ross. Her wonderful ability to use the written word and her fascinating discription of London society in 1825 created exactly the kind of book that I enjoy. The mystery part of the book was good, but the author's ability to "turn a phrase" is the thing that sets Kate Ross apart from other good mystery writers in my opinion. The "detective" in this mystery, Julian Kestrel, is a young English gentleman who moves in high society in London in 1825. He is witty and urbane and totally charming. Ms. Ross wrote four Julian Kestrel books before her death. This is the third book in the series. Normally, with excellent authors such as Ms. Ross, it is best to start a seies with the first book in the series. If you like history and a little romance and a brilliant command of the English language mixed with mystery, you will find Kate Ross to be very satisfying.
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Format: Paperback
When I noticed Kate Ross's "Cut to the Quick" on a plethora of recommendation lists (including Amazon's), I was eager to try it. Upon realizing it was a series, I held off; I was in the midst of several historical mystery series, and I didn't think I could handle another one. But bored one day, I picked up that novel and immersed myself in her brilliant writing. Now, with the third installment, "Whom the Gods Love", I'm amazed that this series isn't more popular. It's incredible, and though this is the third book, it just keeps getting better.

After solving two major crimes, dandy Julian Kestrel is developing a repuation around London for his murder-solving skills. Therefore, when a young man is found dead in his study and the authorities are baffled, his father turns to Kestrel to sort out what happened. Alexander Falkland was smashed in the back of the head during one of his parties. There were over eighty guests in the house, but no one saw or heard anything; furthermore, no one has been able to determine why Falkland was in his study instead of upstairs entertaining. He was well-liked by everyone, a brilliant beacon of youth and charm, a nearly perfect character. Who would want to kill him?

When Kestrel is first presented with the case, he informs Alexander's father that he will discover the truth, despite any pains or secrets it may reveal. In this case, there are many secrets to unfold. While Alexander dazzled in life, he was a man of many facets. He was interested in the fine things of life, art, fasion, society; his letters to his father revealed deep thinking about politics, philosophy, and the plight of the misfortunate, and he was a devoted husband and friend. In short, he was too perfect to be real.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
This is one of the best historical mysteries I've ever read. And that's saying something, because I am very picky about historical mysteries.

This book combines everything I love about a mystery: a tight, intriguing, well-written plot, suspense, fascinating characters, red herrings, and beautiful prose. Kate Ross's writing is stellar. Her characters speak in the formal, upper class manner you'd expect from this time period, but her writing doesn't get bogged down with too much flowery, false, hard to read prose. The dialogue is simply wonderful - it's stylish yet simple to read.

Julian Kestrel is one of the best protaganists I've ever come across. He's a "dandy" and a darling of high society, but he's also compassionate, just, intelligent, hard working, and has a wonderful wry sense of humor. He is the kind of character you cheer for.

I understand that Ms. Ross has passed away and we only get to enjoy four books from her. I will now eagerly purchase the remaining three and treasure them.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
As I read this historical mystery, I kept wondering why I had not previously heard of Kate Ross. Her wonderful ability to use the written word and her fascinating discription of London society in 1825 created exactly the kind of book that I enjoy. The mystery part of the book was good, but the author's ability to "turn a phrase" is the thing that sets Kate Ross apart from other good mystery writers in my opinion. The "detective" in this mystery, Julian Kestrel, is a young English gentleman who moves in high society in London in 1825. He is witty and urbane and totally charming. Ms. Ross wrote four Julian Kestrel books before her death. This is the third book in the series. Normally, with excellent authors such as Ms. Ross, it is best to start a seies with the first book in the series. If you like history and a little romance and a brilliant command of the English language mixed with mystery, you will find Kate Ross to be very satisfying.
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