A Lady’s Guide to Mischief and Murder sees the return of Frances Wynn, Countess of Harleigh, in her third exciting adventure set against the background of aristocratic society. For once in a very long while everything seems to be going so well and Frances is perfectly content with her life. Her sister Lily soon to marry Leo Kendrick, the man she loves…what could go wrong? Apparently a lot! First comes Lily’s shocking news that she is “expecting”, leading to an earlier wedding and a change of venue. Risings, the ancestral home of George Hazelton, Frances partner in detection and love, is the perfect place. Beautiful, calm, and quiet, with just their closest family and friends on attendance to see Lily and Leo wed. Before the nuptials can take place there are a string of serious accidents that are, at first, thought to be merely coincidence, until Frances sees the thread that ties them all together—Leo. Determined to get to the truth, and save the wedding, Frances and George investigate, and soon learn there are any number of suspects, both family and friends.
I’ll admit, I like a good historical cozy mystery every once in a while, and this series by Dianne Freeman is one of my favorites. I have been waiting since the end of A Lady’s Guide to Gossip and Murder for this book to come out, and I definitely was not disappointed. Loved it from the opening page. Cleverly written with an inventive plot and a great mystery. There is just enough misdirection to keep you guessing up until the end…almost. And even though romance is a significant part of the plot, the mystery never takes a backseat.
All of the characters are appealing. But I love Frances. She is intelligent, shrewd, personable…just all around interesting. She continues on her path of independence, and determines her own future, in a society where women were often treated as less than.
Definitely looking forward to the next in this series.
My Judgement – 4/5
Calendar of Crime – February #8 Month related image on the cover (a couple)