Sunday, March 13, 2011

A Gentleman of Fortune: Or, The Suspicions of Miss Dido Kent-Anna Dean

A Gentleman of Fortune: Or, The Suspicions of Miss Dido Kent
Anna Dean
Minotaur, Mar 29 2011, $24.99
ISBN: 9780312596965

In 1806 in Richmond, Miss Dido Kent sends a detailed letter to her sister Eliza re the death of Mrs. Lansdale, who passed away suddenly from a seizure. Odious Mrs. Midgely spreads the rumor of a suspicious death using the local apothecary as her evidence of foul play She also her casts doubts about the late woman’s nephew Henry Lansdale. Dido’s cousin Flora is upset with what she deems slander as she and her husband claim Henry as a friend.

Over the objection of her suitor Mr. William Lomax, Miss Dido decides to observe the townsfolk in order to determine if one of them killed the elderly Mrs. Lansdale although she still believes natural causes took the woman’s life. Miss Dido is stunned by what she learns by just watching the residents as she finds everyone especially the aristocracy tries to conceal dark secrets that have nothing to do with the death of a respectable woman.

The second wonderful Anna Dean Regency amateur sleuth (see Bellfield Hall) is much more than just a mystery as the observations and “The Deductions of Miss Dido Kent” makes for a delightful period piece. Character driven, readers will enjoy observing the heroine shining a deep light on the darkest secrets of the Ton and others.

Harriet Klausner

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