The Gilded Shroud

The Gilded Shroud

3.8 6
by Elizabeth Bailey
     
 

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First in a new series that has the perfect mix of Regency murder and mystery.

When the marchioness is found murdered at Polbrook mansion, the Dowager Lady Polbrook's new companion, Ottilia Draycott, finds herself in a house of strangers and every one of them a suspect. Only she can unmask and outwit a desperate killer and keep a Polbrook family secret buried

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Overview

First in a new series that has the perfect mix of Regency murder and mystery.

When the marchioness is found murdered at Polbrook mansion, the Dowager Lady Polbrook's new companion, Ottilia Draycott, finds herself in a house of strangers and every one of them a suspect. Only she can unmask and outwit a desperate killer and keep a Polbrook family secret buried.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Fans of romantic historicals will welcome Bailey's solid debut, a Regency mystery. Sharp-witted Ottilia Draycott, who's just taken a temporary position as companion to the dowager marchioness of Polbrook, finds herself in the midst of a baffling murder puzzle after the discovery of the strangled corpse of the dowager's daughter-in-law, Emily Fanshawe, sprawled on her four-poster bed. Even more alarmingly, Emily's heavy-drinking husband, Randal, has vanished, making him the obvious suspect. Despite the skepticism of her new employer and the dowager's attractive, and available, other son, Francis, Ottilia proves herself an adept investigator, whose nose for clues might enable resolution of the mystery before the law gets involved. She must weigh varying motives for the murder, including a theft turned violent and a crime of passion committed by the dead woman's lover. A satisfying solution and well-chosen period detail will leave readers eager for the sequel. (Sept.)
Library Journal
Perhaps if she had been more discreet about her lovers, Emily, the marchioness of Polbrook, wouldn't have been murdered in her own bed. The prime suspect, her rogue husband, Randal, is on the lam. Veteran romance author Bailey debuts a sparkling new mystery series, introducing readers to Ottilia Draycott, an amateur sleuth who stoops to no man in this Georgian England delight. Ottilia, a lady's companion to the victim's mother-in-law, jumps in as if detective work was second nature to her. Gaining the confidence of a crusty dowager, a handsome lord, and the household staff, Ottilia teases out with whom Emily might have been rendezvousing when she met her demise. There may be hope for Randal yet, and perhaps a more permanent place in this household for the smart and spunky Ottilia. VERDICT A light upstairs-downstairs affair with clever dialog. Georgette Heyer is a strong influence on Bailey, and Bailey does it well, deftly mixing her detecting with a gentle romance. Terrific crossover appeal for Georgian romance readers who crave a corpse with their love stories.
Kirkus Reviews
A Dowager's companion and a second son join forces to uncover a murderer.

Emily, the licentious Marchioness of Polbrook, lies strangled in her bedchamber. Her husband the Marquis saddled up and left in the early-morning hours, perhaps, as it's suspected, on his way to France. The household is mostly in disarray. The butler, the footman, the lady's maid, the housekeeper, the cook, even the Dowager herself, are at sixes and sevens. The Dowager's new companion, widowed Ottilia (Tillie) Draycott, who's rather pleased with all the excitement, steps right up to settle everyone down. Lord Francis, second son and Emily's brother-in-law, is dispatched to find his brother while Tillie noses about the estate. On the Lord's return, he's bemused then enchanted by Tillie, who's discovered that a fan, a Polbrook treasured heirloom last in Emily's possession, has gone missing, along with her jewel box and her silk stockings. But what to make of that extra key found in her dressing-table drawer? Suspicion falls on Emily's many lovers; the Bow Street Runners favor the Marquis instead. Despite the difference in their stations, Tillie and Lord Francis are attracted to one another, but it's Tillie who solves the crimes before their first kiss.

First in a Regency suspense series from newcomer Bailey, who's a trifle long-winded but has the scenery and the upstairs-downstairs characters down pat.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780425242896
Publisher:
Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
09/06/2011
Series:
A Lady Fan Mystery Series, #1
Pages:
368
Sales rank:
1,150,012
Product dimensions:
5.10(w) x 7.90(h) x 1.00(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

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