From Goodreads: Set in 1931 London, Jacqueline Winspear’s fourth mystery featuring Maisie Dobbs (Pardonable Lies et al.) finds the intrepid psychologist and investigator up against her most baffling case yet — the allegedly accidental death of a controversial artist.
Just hours before celebrated British painter Nick Bassington-Hope is scheduled to open a much-anticipated exhibit of his latest work at the renowned Mayfair gallery, he’s found dead. The local police rule the death accidental, as all the evidence points to a fall from a scaffold. But Bassington-Hope’s twin sister, Georgina, isn’t so sure — in fact, she’s certain that someone killed her brother. After being recommended by a Scotland Yard inspector, Dobbs is hired to get to the bottom of the artist’s untimely death. But even as her personal life suffers tragedy after tragedy — her longtime potential beau abruptly ends their “courtship,” and her trusted assistant’s young child dies of diphtheria — Dobbs perseveres on and eventually uncovers disturbing secrets surrounding the brilliantly talented artist who could “touch the truth,” secrets that some people would kill to keep from being revealed
Fans who enjoy meticulously researched historical mystery sagas like Sandra Scoppettone’s Faye Quick novels (set in 1943 New York City) and Philip Kerr’s Berlin Noir trilogy (taking place in 1937 Berlin) will absolutely devour Winspear’s Maisie Dobbs novels, which immerse readers in a richly described post-WWI England struggling with widespread unemployment, poverty, and political upheaval. Featuring an intuitive, compassionate, and downright endearing protagonist, these historical whodunits are simply irresistible.
Well, Jacqueline has done it again. Made me Mad for Maisie all over again. Just when I think I can’t love the next one as much as the last, I read the next and love it more.
One of the issues I sometimes have with series is the character either never changes, grows, or evolves or he or she change in ways I do not enjoy. This cannot be said about Maisie. I love the way she grows and develops over each novel. She learns more about her self and we learn more about her. This entry in the series is no exception. And though I’m sad at where some of her growth has taken her I’m still love our girl.
I wasn’t surprised by the conclusion of her relationship with Dr. Dene but I did find it very sad. I thought maybe it would just fade away into friendship and maybe they will end up as friends later but it was a very sad moment in Maisie’s growth. I was also sad to see the riff between Maisie and Maurice hasn’t quite healed yet. I hope to see them come back together in the next books.
I was incredibly happy to see Billy back in the mix but was heartbroken by his storyline. I held out hope till the end that things would turn out well for Billy and his family but appreciate why it had to happen the way it did. It was much more honest.
I think as Maisie grows we need less of her emotional story and more mystery and this episodes mystery really had me guessing. Much more of a “who-done-it” than the past books this really was (as they might say in “the smoke”) a jolly good mystery. Another devastating family story but really very good.
I’m reading this as part of the I’m Mad for Maisie Read-Along hosted by Book Club Girl. Even if your not reading along head on over. There’s some great discussion that I’m sure will make you want to read this series. We’re about half way through but it’s not too late to join, just pick up a copy and start reading-you won’t be sorry.