- File Size: 912 KB
- Print Length: 300 pages
- Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1500217891
- Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
- Publisher: Mount Street Press (June 14, 2014)
- Publication Date: June 14, 2014
- Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B00L0LZDN2
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
Amazon Best Sellers Rank:
#70,103 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
- #514 in Books > Literature & Fiction > Action & Adventure > Women's Adventure
- #582 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Literature & Fiction > Action & Adventure > Women's Adventure
- #1284 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Literature & Fiction > Action & Adventure > Mystery, Thriller & Suspense > Mystery
|Print List Price:||$11.99|
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The Incident at Fives Castle (An Angela Marchmont Mystery Book 5) Kindle Edition
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|Length: 300 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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It's 1928 and this scientist has solved the puzzle of how to make atoms react and create a super weapon. Obviously, the possession of this super bomb will completely eliminate future wars and save both the British and U.S. governments lots of money because they will no longer need to maintain armies. [That worked out well, didn't it?]
To disguise the purpose of the meeting (did these men EVER go to their offices?) a large house party is gathered. There's a madcap heiress (obligatory in 1920's novels) and a wide-awake, slangy reporter and a scatty old-maid governess-turned-companion to provide comic relief. It's Hogmanay (Scotland's New Year) so there's a huge feast and a dance for the villagers and the two young sons are home from their boarding schools to complicate matters. THEN a blizzard cuts them off and knocks out the telephone service!
This is my second Clara Benson and I'm getting quite fond of her. She isn't above giving a whopper of a clue in the middle of the book and she has a nice way with red herrings. Angela Marchmont is a stunner of an amateur detective. She's intelligent, witty, and kindhearted like Gladys Mitchell's Mrs. Bradley and she treats men with outward deference and inward condescension like Christie's Miss Marple. She's still mysterious, although we do learn that she has a brother, served in British Intelligence in WWI, and that she has had at least one husband. She's also wealthy enough to afford a personal maid, a Bentley and a driver, a must for crime-solving among the aristocracy.
I'm STILL trying to make up my mind about the odd story put forth to explain the sudden appearance of five mysteries written in the 1920's and not published until now. Would this very traditional Earl and Countess really have sent their daughters to boarding school because their governess couldn't control them? And would even the feminist Angela have been enthusiastic about Lady Clemmie going to university at a time when educated women were called "BlueStockings" and roundly denounced? As for the idea that the Countess was reconciled to her daughter being educated as long as she became a nurse, it's preposterous. Nurses in that era were very much looked down on and considered little better than prostitutes by many.
On the other hand, the long-winded (skip over it!) explanation of the danger posed by communist Russia really does sound authentic to the period. The murders of the Russian royal family (both Czar and Czarina cousins to the King of England) weighed heavily on the English aristocracy and outshone their fears of German rearmament. Even a dopey Limousine-Leftist like St. John can't be safely ignored.
So I'm still on the fence, but I'm quite happy to read the other three books in this very entertaining series before I make my final pronouncement. And if Clara's family finds any more gems in the attic, I'll read those, too. Maybe they could search Jane Austin's last home and see what they turn up. We could do with another PRIDE AND PREJUDICE, right?
Too bad the authoress didn't live long enough to see her 3 books published. Books are dated but very good. The flow is good, her story lines are a little tedious at times; however, there was definitely talent. In my opinion Ms. Benson would have developed a style similoar to the "Tommy and Tuppence" books. Of the 3 books, one should read this second.
It's a standard country house mystery with a bunch of suspects, a corpse, and no way to call in the authorities. As a mystery it's fine. Also it advances the longer arc of Angela Marchmont somewhat. The problem for me was not in the outline but the execution. It's told in third-person limited viewpoint, and I found the narration a little flat, which counts heavily with me, the characters, while distinct, didn't hold my interest, and the dialogue was almost too realistic. Yes, people do talk like that--but it's why I seldom attend parties. For fiction, I have higher standards.
Don't read this one and give up on the series. I'll be giving THE RIDDLE AT GYPSY'S MILE a much better review.