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Publisher's Summary

On a cold February night in Regency London, a dark curtain falls on the Sans Pareil Theatre following the death of April Clare, a promising young actress, whose body is found in mysterious circumstances.
Detective Stephen Lavender and his dependable deputy, Constable Woods, quickly discover that nothing is quite as it seems. As successive mysteries unfold, they soon realise that it is not only the actors from the Sans Pareil who are playing a part.
With the Napoleonic War looming dangerously across the Channel, this is a time of suspicion and treachery. Following the clues from the seedy back streets of Covent Garden up through the echelons of society, Lavender and Woods begin to fear that the case is much bigger than they'd dared imagine - and worse, that they are at risk of becoming mere players in a master criminal's shadowy drama.
It will take all of Lavender's skill and wit, and help from the beautiful Magdalena, to bring the mystery of the Sans Pareil Theatre to a dramatic conclusion in the final act.
©2015 Karen Charlton (P)2015 Brilliance Audio, Inc.
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Customer Reviews

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By MidwestGeek on 12-29-15

Good mystery with excellent narrator.

This is my first Detective Lavender mystery. The prose is excellent, although the plot is more or less transparent. I have to take on faith what English society was like in the early 1800's, but the author apparently has immersed herself in the period. Lavender is persistent and thoughtful but sometimes unbelievably blind-eyed. The narrator added a lot to the reading, differentiating characters by tone and accent. He had more difficulty with female voices, but even so, did a good job. I prefer 20th century period pieces to the 19th century, so I'm not sure how soon I'll take up another Lavender mystery.

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5 of 5 people found this review helpful


By Wildrose Rhedd on 11-12-15

Excellent narrator! mediocre material

The book dwindled from a passable mystery to a drawn out bodice ripper. The narration is superior.

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4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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By Rogayah on 12-13-15

London 1810

Interesting story of an early detective in Bow Street, Coventry Garden, a very different place than the touristy place it is today. The story evokes something of the dirt, poverty and harshness of life in England during the wars with Napoleon's forces.

Lavender and Wood make a good detective duo and it will be interesting to see how these characters are developed in future stories.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful


By Rachel Downton on 11-16-17

Good and fast paced

An enjoyable story with interesting characters based at the time of Bonaparte's rampage across Europe, the book gives a bit of insight of what it was like to live at that time. If you like mystery and history, you will probably enjoy this book.

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By Wrappedinharry, Vic, Australia on 08-25-16

Very entertaining.

I enjoyed this second audiobook of the Detective Lavender and Constable Woods series. The two main characters are very likeable and it is a delight to listen to their interactions.

We meet Woods' redoubtable wife, Betsy in this story and after only hearing about her previously from the point of view of her hulking, but henpecked husband, one would not have expected quote such a delightful character. We also learn more of the beautiful but secretive Spanish widow whom Stephen Lavender has fallen in love with.

Michael Page's narration is, as ever, brilliant. I fell in love with his voice with his narration of the Max Tudor series.

The story holds one's interest, even if there was more than one instance of being able to quests a plot point.

Being a great reader of many a book set during Regency times, I was surprised that the author had women attending a burial. It is my firm understanding that this did not happen during the Regency and indeed, up to and including the Victorian Era.

But regardless, this was a very worthwhile audio experience. I give the overall, 4 1/2 stars.

Lesley, from Victoria.



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