Malice at the Palace 3 STARS

  • Written by: Rhys Bowen
  • Narrated by: Katherine Kellgren
  • Length: 9 hrs and 20 mins
  • 3 Stars
  • Publishers Summary (extract)

    From the New York Times best-selling author of Queen of Hearts comes another mystery for "fans of P. G. Wodehouse looking for laughs mingled with some amateur sleuthing." (Publishers Weekly).

  • Lady Georgiana Rannoch won't deny that being 35th in line for the British throne has its advantages. Unfortunately money isn't one of them. And sometimes, making ends meet requires her to investigate a little royal wrongdoing.
  • Over the years I've read and enjoyed several of the books in this series, yet despite following the usual format, this one missed the mark. I think I am quite simply tired of the same old thing; the situations arising from being high born but poor; the somewhat silly antics of the awful Queenie, and the now boring relationship with Darcy.
    There are some echoes of books past, the little mystery is quite neat really, and who doesn't enjoy a bit of Royal gossip? Especially when written with the benefit of hindsight. I enjoyed the character of the Princess Marina, it may sound a bit sappy but I like to think she enjoyed some really good times before family tragedy shadowed her young life.
    The only character who seems to be moving, on or maybe even maturing, is the usually ever exuberant loose lady, Belinda. In this book she had a far more interesting role than previous stories.
    As we all know by now, wherever Queenie goes trouble and embarrassment is sure to befall her hapless employer. However, this time the author came up with a natty idea to minimise the "Queenie Effect" - she simply devised a means to keep her out of the way for most of the time!
    Overall, I felt this book was written in a hurry, dashed off to a pared down formula simply to put another book on the shelves. Disappointing.
    Narrated by Katherine Kellgren who does a reasonably good job of an aristocratic English accent, however, I was disappointed to hear her speak the dates in an American style, especially considering the story is set in Great Britain in the 1930s. Even these days one would be hard put to find an English Lady pronouncing the date as, for example, "November six," she would say "the sixth of November" a seemingly small detail, but important for authenticity. Sorry to say, but I do think the regional accents need a bit more work too. Katherine does keep the story going though, she brings a lot of vitality to the characters and her comedic timing is just spot on. The overall quality of this recording is very good.

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