>> Thursday, December 6, 2012
Her Royal Spyness by Rhys Bowen
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Series: #1 in the Royal Spyness series
Publisher: Berkley Prime Crime
Publication Date: 2007
The Short Version:
Being distantly related to the Royal Family gives Lady Georgiana both privileges and troubles in 1930’s London.
Why I Read It:
I’ve read a few of Rhys Bowen’s Molly Murphy books and enjoy them. This series sounded a little more lighthearted and fun so I decided to give it at try.
Lady Victoria Georgiana Charlotte Eugenie is the daughter of the late Duke of Atholt and Rannoch. Unfortunately now that her half-brother is the Duke and struggling to financially keep up the family estate, Georgie (as she’s known) has no income. When you’re 34th in line to the throne, your career path is pretty much to get married. The queen is very much interested in matching up Georgie with Prince Siegfried of Romania but Georgie isn’t too keen on the idea. She refers to him as “FishFace” and in the 1930’s she’s well aware that European royalty are prime targets for assassination or exile.
Georgie decides to head to London to live her own life. It’s complicated by the limitations that being part of the extended Royal Family put on her and then complicated even further when she finds a body in her bathtub. With her half-brother under suspicion for murder Georgie needs all the self-reliance she can muster to clear his name (and her own).
"The time has come for action!" I shouted into the storm. I was no longer a minor. I was able to go where I wanted without a chaperon, to make my own decisions and to choose my own life. It wasn't as if I were either the heir or the spare. I was only thirty-fourth in line to the throne. Being a mere woman, I could never inherit the dukedom or Castle Rannoch efin if Binky had not produced a son. I was not going to sit around one minute longer waiting for the future to come to me. I was going to do out into the world to choose my own destiny.
What a fun heroine. I like Georgie. This lively romp through 1930’s English society includes cameo appearances by The Queen, The Prince of Wales and even Wallis Warfield Simpson (portrayed rather unflatteringly by the way). Georgie’s mother is a former actress who has gone on to accumulate a number of husbands after leaving Georgie’s father but is really fun secondary character. Her scenes with Mrs. Simpson are a crackup.
The murder mystery is really only about half the story and as the first in a series there’s a lot of set up and introduction of characters.
This is definitely a lighthearted book and despite the dangers both to Georgie’s health and her virtue it remains mostly fun. I am definitely looking forward to continuing with this series.
This post is for Cozy Mystery Week hosted by Jenn at Jenn's Bookshelves.