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Death in a Scarlet Coat
Lord Francis Powerscourt – Book X
David Dickinson

Constable (Constable and Robinson)
27 January 2011/ ISBN 9781849014595
Historical Mystery /1909 Lincolnshire
Amazon US || UK

Reviewed by Rachel A Hyde

The fifteenth Earl of Candlesby is master of the hunt and on a chilly morning everybody is awaiting his arrival as they sip their stirrup cups. He does indeed appear, but slung over his horse and very dead. By the time the family’s doctor wants to confess on his deathbed that he aided in the cover-up of a murder the body is buried in the Candlesby vault. Only three people saw the body and can guess at how me met his end: the doctor is dead, the man who brought him back across his horse has vanished and the other is the sixteenth earl.

Enter Lord Francis Powerscourt to investigate! This is a series that does not always deliver up a first-rate novel, but when it does (and it certainly does this time) I can highly recommend it. Dickinson’s tenth book is not a short book but there is a lot packed into it, from the tortuous plot to Powerscourt’s new Silver Ghost and Lady Lucy’s nursing abilities, to an absorbing look at the political situation. This is the time of Lloyd George and the Labour Party, and for the first time the English aristocrats are getting a taste of things to come. This is a story about change, as well as a frequently quite gothic murder mystery centered on a truly awful family in their moldering home, and I applaud anybody who can write a truly historical genre novel that is firmly set in a particular year. In short there is much to enjoy in here, and if this is a taste of future delights then I look forward to next year’s effort.

Reviews of other titles in this series

Death & The Jubilee, No 2
Death of an Old Master
, No 3
Death of a Chancellor, No 4
Death Called To The Bar, No 5
Death on the Nevskii Prospekt, No 6
Death on the Holy Mountain, No 7
Death of a Pilgrim,
No 8
Death of a Wine Merchant
, No 9
Death in a Scarlet Coat, No 10 [review 1] [review 2]
Death at the Jesus Hospital, No 11 [review 1] [review 2]
Death of an Elgin Marble No 13

Reviewed 2011
© 2011