July 18, 2011
An Incomplete Revenge
An Incomplete Revenge by Jacqueline Winspear
2008 Macmillan Audio, Unabridged edition
Reader: Orlagh Cassidy
Rating: 2.5/5 (Fair)
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.