A John Rawlings Mystery
By Deryn Lake
Allison & Busby - July 2002
ISBN 0749005831 - HB
Historical Crime
1761, London

Reviewed by Rachel A Hyde,
Buy a US || UK Copy

I always look forward to reading another of Deryn Lake's excellent mysteries, and this is the eighth of a series that shows no sign of flagging. One of the things I enjoy about them is that they manage to hit that elusive spot between cozy and hardboiled, have a cast of entertaining characters that it is always a pleasure to spend some time with and some wonderfully teasing plots.

This time, John Fielding is getting knighted, and John Rawlings gets to go along and see the new king. He also meets the Gowards, but just after George Goward is knighted, he falls to his death down a great staircase. Trouble is, everybody was looking the other way (at George III's ugly queen) except for the blind Sir John, who heard a snatch of whispered conversation. This plunges John Rawlings into a tough case. As he struggles to find out whodunit, he has to deal with a cast of noble pageboys, delinquent schoolboys, the exotic Jack Morocco and the obnoxious Gowards in search of some old sins that are casting some very long shadows, indeed.

As usual, this is a fun mix of history and mystery as effervescent as one of John Rawling's fizzy drinks. Highly recommended for all historical whodunit fans, not least because Ms Lake lets her characters behave like 18th century people and doesn't bow to the popular convention of making them all politically correct.


© MyShelf.Com. All Rights Reserved