July 18, 2011

An Incomplete Revenge

An Incomplete Revenge by Jacqueline Winspear
2008 Macmillan Audio, Unabridged edition
Reader: Orlagh Cassidy
Finished 6/23/11
Rating: 2.5/5 (Fair)

Product Description

With the country in the grip of economic malaise, and worried about her business, Maisie Dobbs is relieved to accept an apparently straightforward assignment from an old friend to investigate certain matters concerning a potential land purchase. Her inquiries take her to a picturesque village in Kent during the hop-picking season, but beneath its pastoral surface she finds evidence that something is amiss. Mysterious fires erupt in the village with alarming regularity, and a series of petty crimes suggests a darker criminal element at work. As Maisie discovers, the villagers are bitterly prejudiced against outsiders who flock to Kent at harvest-time—even more troubling, they seem possessed by the legacy of a war-time Zeppelin raid. Maisie grows increasingly suspicious of a peculiar secrecy that shrouds the village, and ultimately she must draw on all her finely honed skills of detection to solve one of her most intriguing cases.

Rich with Jacqueline Winspear’s trademark period detail, this latest installment of the bestselling series is gripping, atmospheric, and utterly enthralling.

I’ve read and enjoyed the first three novels in the Maisie Dobbs' series, but this is the second installment that has fallen flat for me. I never felt engaged in the mystery and there were very few new revelations about Maisie (or Billy Beale) that might have piqued my curiosity or added any suspense to the narrative. Unlike Winspear’s earlier books, this one lacks tension and emotion, missing its mark and making this reader wonder if it’s worth continuing with the next three books in the series.


  1. Sorry to see this one was a stinker. I haven't started the series yet, but my mom has read the first book and loved it.

  2. If you like Maisie, PLEASE continue! This was the lowest rated book in the series for me. I gave it a 3/5.

  3. Oops! I "Published" too soon. :)

    This is book #5. Out of the 5, I had two ratings in the 3s. Even with the 3s, I loved the writing style, time frame and Maisie. In books 6 - 8, my lowest rating is a 3.75/5.

  4. The Mapping of Love and Death (book 7) is by far my favorite of the series.

  5. I really enjoyed the series overall. Some are better than others, though, but they have sort of ran together now...

  6. I read this one last month and agree it was my least favorite. What I did like, though, was how many storylines were tied up. I'm hoping Winspear really gets the action going from here on out!

  7. Kathy - I really like the audio reader for this series, but I'm beginning to wonder if I should switch back to the printed books. Maybe I'll enjoy them better when I can actually read the words myself.

    Joy - OK, you've convinced me. I'll keep going. :) Here's how I've rated the books:

    #1 4/5
    #2 4/5
    #3 4/5
    #4 2.5/5
    #5 2.5/5

    Word Lily - Well, as I told Joy, I guess I'll keep going with this series. Good to know #7 was a winner for you.

    Thanks for stopping by my blog. It's always nice to "meet" new bloggers. I see you're in Nebraska. Whereabouts? I'm in Lincoln.

    Kailana - Yep. Some are quite good and some seem to fall into the ho-hum range. And don't ask me which was which. I agree. They do run together after a little time has passed, don't they?

    nomadreader - Good to know that I'm not in the minority here! Thanks for stopping by.

  8. And I (no surprise!) loved it. I loved the setting, the Romany gypsy culture, learning what a lurcher was, the hops, the way the past influences the future. Really perfect for me.

  9. Having read none of the series (I know! Where have I been?!) I now turn our attention to Before I Go To Sleep. Wasn't that a great thriller? I'm not often surprised by a book, nor compelled to not put it down, but that was great entertainment. So suspenseful, in my opinion.

  10. You know I'm a big fan of Maisie Dobbs but this was not my favorite. There's also another in the series I wasn't that thrilled with but I read the latest book earlier this Spring and I liked it a lot. So I say hang in there too :)

  11. Nan - Nope, no surprise. :) I *did* enjoy learning what a lurcher was.

    Bellezza - I really need to get caught up on my reviews. Next up is Before I Go To Sleep. Yes, it was a wonderful thriller. I could not put it down!

    Iliana - I just started another (on audio) and am enjoying it much better. It's the one about maps. Accidentally picked it up before reading the one before it, but I'm going to continue and try not to be too anal about reading in order. ;)


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