The Mitford Murders
by Jessica Fellowes
Having picked this one up at the Derby Book Festival where the author was speaking, I have to say that I loved it, particularly as I like historical fiction and a good cosy murder mystery. There is plenty of content to keep you interested as the story progresses introducing different characters along the way.
The setting in the early 1920s, I felt was well researched and the effects that the Great war had on ex soldiers and nurses who were subjected to at that time was true to life. I liked the mix of fact and fiction and how the author brought in the true horrific murder of a war nurse, Florence Nightingale Shore, a murder that took place on a train and one that was never solved.
I confess, I knew nothing about the Mitford family, except the link to Chatsworth House of one of them, but am intrigued now to know more about them and the controversy surrounding the family. The story of this book centres mainly around the oldest Mitford sister, Nancy. I also enjoyed the insight into the upstairs, downstairs life of the family which is interesting and continues in the vein of Downton Abbey from that perspective.
The main protagonist, Louisa was plausible and her background believable as that of a young woman brought up in poverty during the era. Her love interest, Guy is also a likeable character whose tenacity to solve the murder of the nurse is admirable. I liked the plot and the introduction of red herrings at various points throughout the book that kept one guessing. It wasn’t until nearer the end that I guessed whodunnit! I liked the writing style and the humour that was interspersed at various intervals.
I would highly recommend it if you like a good, clean murder and if you are a fan of historical fiction. I look forward to reading the next book. I actually bought my copy at the Derby Book Festival where the author was speaking and I recommend the print copy as the gold embossing makes it a real treat of a hard copy. I will also be buying the book about Florence Nightingale Shore, the murder subject of this book written by Rosemary Cook to discover more about this nurse and her tragic end.