REVIEW: The Complaint of the Dove by Hannah March

The Complaint of the DoveAre you in the mood for a good Georgian mystery? I plucked this title off the shelf with no prior knowledge of this author’s work. This purchase was strictly for the cover.  Besides, it looked like a good read, too and lucky me, it was a good read indeed. The Complaint of the Dove by Hannah March is a wonderful buried treasure read.

The protagonist of this wonderful historical mystery is Mr. Robert Fairfax. Robert is a private tutor employed by the Helmsley’s to educate their son on the finer points of London life. The boy’s father wants to make sure that Matthew understands the power of having the right connections. So as fate would have it,  Robert and Matthew travel to London to further Matthew’s education. It is there that they meet actress Lucy Dove through a mutual friend.  The job of an actress is not a respectable one. However, Ms. Dove has her share of fans and is very popular actress of the London stage. Robert is somewhat wary of Matthew’s association with the actress because Matthew’s father would highly disapprove of his son’s association with such lowly folk. Unfortunately, Matthew is already smitten by Ms. Dove and it is this ill-fated attraction that leads to his being accused of murder. Thus, Mr. Robert Fairfax must don the hat of amateur sleuth in order to save his pupil from hanging. Otherwise, he’ll be out of a job.

The author does an excellent job of recreating the Georgian time period. The story lacks good pacing but I was fully engaged in the story to not really care about it. I felt as if I was in a time portal and was sent back in time to 1700’s London. If your looking for a fast historical read then this is not it. The author takes her time developing her characters and enveloping the reader firmly into this world with the historical markers of the time period. I enjoyed this novel quite a bit. Alas there isn’t a romance but there might be a hint of one to come in the next entry or so.

This is the first book in the Robert Fairfax mystery series.  The first of  three books that are printed in the US. In the UK, I noticed that there are even more Robert Fairfax mysteries to enjoy that are not currently available here. I own the other two books in the series and with everything in life, I have good intentions to read them. It’s finding the time to do so that is the problem. The Complaint of the Dove is a worthy recommendation to historical mystery buffs everywhere. My grade, B.

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