Her entry begins:
Longbourn by Jo Baker was this month’s choice by my local library reading group.About A Woman Unknown, from the publisher:
The novel brilliantly reimagines Pride and Prejudice from the point of view of the servants who wash clothes, cook and serve meals and drive the carriage for the Bennet family. You don’t need to have read Pride and Prejudice to appreciate the novel but there’s an added richness if you have. The author heads her chapters with lines from Jane Austen’s novel that dovetail with the drama going on in the servants’ quarters. The hard life of the servants provides a telling counterpoint to the ease of the Bennet girls’ lives. ‘If Elizabeth Bennet had the washing of her own petticoats,’ Sarah thought, ‘she would be more careful not to tramp through muddy fields.’
There is a parallel love story, fraught with difficulties. Mysterious James Smith turns up looking for work and is instantly hired because...[read on]
A winning combination of both intricate plotting and nostalgic post-WWI English country setting, Frances Brody's A Woman Unknown will appeal to fans of both classic murder mysteries in the vein of Agatha Christie as well as readers of historical mystery series set in 1920s England, two popular subgenres. The Woman Unknown: Deirdre Fitzpatrick is married to a man who wants to know where she really goes when supposedly taking care of her sick mother and calls on the expertise of Kate Shackleton, amateur sleuth extraordinaire to investigate. The Gentleman: Everett Runcie is a banker facing ruin and disgrace. His American heiress wife will no longer pay for his mistakes, or tolerate his infidelity, and is seeking a divorce. The Murder: When a chambermaid enters Runcie's hotel room, she is shocked to find that he is alone - and dead! Suddenly Kate is thrown into the depths of an altogether more sinister investigation. Can she uncover the truth of her most complex, and personal, case to date?Learn more about the book and author at Frances Brody's website.
The Page 69 Test: Dying in the Wool.
Writers Read: Frances Brody.