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Death Around the Bend

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September 1909, and Lady Hardcastle and her maid, Florence, have been invited to Lord Riddlethorpe’s country estate for a week of motor racing and parties. They both agree that it sounds like a perfectly charming holiday. But when one of the drivers dies in a crash during the very first race, they discover that what seemed like an uncharacteristic error in judgement may ha September 1909, and Lady Hardcastle and her maid, Florence, have been invited to Lord Riddlethorpe’s country estate for a week of motor racing and parties. They both agree that it sounds like a perfectly charming holiday. But when one of the drivers dies in a crash during the very first race, they discover that what seemed like an uncharacteristic error in judgement may have a more sinister explanation…Closer investigation reveals that the driver’s car was sabotaged—and the driver murdered. The local constabulary are quick to dismiss the case, but Flo and Lady Hardcastle are determined to find out just who has committed this dastardly act, and why.As the pair begin to make enquiries of Lord Riddlethorpe’s servants and guests, it seems that, below stairs and above, there is more to this case than meets the eye. And, even in the quiet of the countryside, death is always just around the bend.


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September 1909, and Lady Hardcastle and her maid, Florence, have been invited to Lord Riddlethorpe’s country estate for a week of motor racing and parties. They both agree that it sounds like a perfectly charming holiday. But when one of the drivers dies in a crash during the very first race, they discover that what seemed like an uncharacteristic error in judgement may ha September 1909, and Lady Hardcastle and her maid, Florence, have been invited to Lord Riddlethorpe’s country estate for a week of motor racing and parties. They both agree that it sounds like a perfectly charming holiday. But when one of the drivers dies in a crash during the very first race, they discover that what seemed like an uncharacteristic error in judgement may have a more sinister explanation…Closer investigation reveals that the driver’s car was sabotaged—and the driver murdered. The local constabulary are quick to dismiss the case, but Flo and Lady Hardcastle are determined to find out just who has committed this dastardly act, and why.As the pair begin to make enquiries of Lord Riddlethorpe’s servants and guests, it seems that, below stairs and above, there is more to this case than meets the eye. And, even in the quiet of the countryside, death is always just around the bend.

30 review for Death Around the Bend

  1. 4 out of 5

    Phrynne

    I am not much of a fan of the modern cosy mystery but I always enjoy these period ones. Death around the Bend is set in the early 1900's and has the upstairs /downstairs settings of the old English country house, horses and carts as well as the newly invented motor cars and lots of high teas and croquet on the lawn. Lovely! I very much enjoyed the characters of Lady Hardcastle and her ladies maid, Florence Armstrong. They have a great relationship and exchange frequent, witty banter. Lady Hardcas I am not much of a fan of the modern cosy mystery but I always enjoy these period ones. Death around the Bend is set in the early 1900's and has the upstairs /downstairs settings of the old English country house, horses and carts as well as the newly invented motor cars and lots of high teas and croquet on the lawn. Lovely! I very much enjoyed the characters of Lady Hardcastle and her ladies maid, Florence Armstrong. They have a great relationship and exchange frequent, witty banter. Lady Hardcastle is quite forward thinking and treats Florence more like a friend than a servant but as they try to solve a variety of murders they find that having a 'spy' downstairs is very useful. The mystery is cleverly constructed and I came nowhere near guessing the culprit although with hindsight it was pretty obvious. Nicely written and full of interesting vocabulary - I had to resort to the dictionary twice , once for bimble and once for jentacular. I don't think I will be using the latter but I just have to remember bimble for future use. Highly recommended for anyone who enjoys a quality cosy mystery.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Brenda

    Lady Hardcastle and her maid, and good friend, Florence Armstrong were looking forward to a week in the country at Lord Riddlethorpe’s estate – Lady Hardcastle’s brother Harry would be there and she hadn’t seen him in awhile. The newly invented motor cars that were going to be making their debut on the estate’s new racing track were the main draw for the friends who were all arriving – the accompanying parties were another enticement. But when disaster struck the day of the first race, the initia Lady Hardcastle and her maid, and good friend, Florence Armstrong were looking forward to a week in the country at Lord Riddlethorpe’s estate – Lady Hardcastle’s brother Harry would be there and she hadn’t seen him in awhile. The newly invented motor cars that were going to be making their debut on the estate’s new racing track were the main draw for the friends who were all arriving – the accompanying parties were another enticement. But when disaster struck the day of the first race, the initial thought of driver error was soon forgotten. Was it murder? The police didn’t believe so, which meant Lady Hardcastle and Flo set to work immediately to discover the culprit. As secrets came to light, it seemed there were sinister plans afoot. But would Lady Hardcastle and Flo find answers before it was too late? Death Around the Bend by T E Kinsey is the 3rd in the Lady Hardcastle cosy mysteries, and my first by this author. I thoroughly enjoyed it – set in the early 1900s, it is highly entertaining with many laugh out loud moments. Lady Hardcastle and Flo are great characters with their dry wit and great camaraderie – I have no hesitation in recommending this cosy mystery; and I’ll be looking at reading the two prior to this one as well.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Luce

    4 STARS for the audiobook. Book 3 of the Lady Hardcastle Mysteries. Our pair, Lady Emily Hardcastle and her ladies maid and best friend, Florence Armstrong are invited to a country estate where they hope to take part in motor racing. There is a fatal car crash and Emily and Flo suspect foul play. This is probably the better written of the series so far and as in the previous audiobooks the narrator, Elizabeth Knowelden does an excellent job, especially considering the number of characters - both u 4 STARS for the audiobook. Book 3 of the Lady Hardcastle Mysteries. Our pair, Lady Emily Hardcastle and her ladies maid and best friend, Florence Armstrong are invited to a country estate where they hope to take part in motor racing. There is a fatal car crash and Emily and Flo suspect foul play. This is probably the better written of the series so far and as in the previous audiobooks the narrator, Elizabeth Knowelden does an excellent job, especially considering the number of characters - both upstairs and downstairs. I did guess the culprit about two thirds of the way in - just not the total how and what fors. What I also enjoyed is we got even more information about the past adventures of Emily and Florence. Because most of the "upstairs" guests are strangers to the two, Emily tells them of their past when they ask if what they heard was true. Although I don't think it is written, but I pictured Flo rolling her eyes when Lady Hardcastle tells the stories, she often embellishes them - "Lady Hardcastle steadfastly refused to remember this part, though, having honed her version of events over many retellings into a tale to make ladies shriek". Flo also recounted some of her past to her roommate, a fellow visiting ladies maid. I'm looking forward to the next edition to this series. I hope its not too long of a wait!

  4. 4 out of 5

    Sophia

    Sparkling wit, upstairs/downstairs, motor racing, country house party, and a fantastic, unique female detecting pair to make Death Around the Bend a great listen. This is my first encounter with the series though Death Around the Bend is book three. It can easily be read/listened to standalone or out of order. I had such a good time with it that I definitely plan to go back for the first pair. Lady Hardcastle and her ladies' maid, Flo are a sparkling pair and I loved following along as they found Sparkling wit, upstairs/downstairs, motor racing, country house party, and a fantastic, unique female detecting pair to make Death Around the Bend a great listen. This is my first encounter with the series though Death Around the Bend is book three. It can easily be read/listened to standalone or out of order. I had such a good time with it that I definitely plan to go back for the first pair. Lady Hardcastle and her ladies' maid, Flo are a sparkling pair and I loved following along as they found their way to the solution in the country house party murder mystery. Even though this is the third book, there is a great backstory for this pair who have been together through thick and thin. Both have surprising talents that make them good detectives. The book follows the usual style of introducing everybody, a murder, and then the slow working through to the solution. It was not a dramatic piece, but it did have the exciting climax point with a good denouement. There is also an adorable mini-mystery plot involving a ticklish problem for one of their neighbors that bookends the other mystery. Oh, and a bit of romance in the air for another side story for a few minor characters. It was set in Edwardian Era England. I thought the story caught the tone of those times and balanced well, staying present enough to be noticed, but also not overtaking the other elements of the plot. The cast of characters surrounding Lady Hardcastle and Flo were a great lot. There were the below stairs serving staff and the upstairs house party of the Earl and his guests. Now the mystery itself was clever. I worked out the who and how and somewhat why out once I had enough clues, but there were a few parts that I had to wait to get until the solution was revealed. I really only had one niggle and it was a teeny tiny one. 'What ho!' was often used by Lady Hardcastle so that I cringed each time Lady Hardcastle spotted Flo. I suspect its her signature greeting. The narrator, Elizabeth Knowelden, was new to me. She had a great plummy English accent for the upper class characters and her voices for all the levels in the servant's hall was superbly done. She had a huge cast to read and they were all distinct and I could easily distinguish them. She added an extra layer of goodness to an already good book. I'm pretty sure that the series would lose a little shine if I didn't experience the rest of it with her narration. So, all in all, this was an abso-fab story and I will definitely be getting the rest of the series. Historical mystery/cozy mystery fans should definitely give this book/series a go. My thanks to Brilliance Audio for the opportunity to listen to this book in exchange for an honest review.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Kirsty ❤️

    A fun period cosy crime book. This is the first I've read of this series and thoroughly enjoyed it. It's entertaining and kept me hooked throughout all of it. Enjoyed the characters. Will definitely have a look out for the rest of the series. Free arc from netgalley A fun period cosy crime book. This is the first I've read of this series and thoroughly enjoyed it. It's entertaining and kept me hooked throughout all of it. Enjoyed the characters. Will definitely have a look out for the rest of the series. Free arc from netgalley

  6. 4 out of 5

    Lorraine

    September 1909 Lady Hardcastle and her lady’s maid and friend, Florence Armstrong are invited to Codrington Hall in Rutland to experience Lord Riddlethorpe’s new passion-motor racing. T. E. Kinsey’s Death Around the Bend (Lady Hardcastle Mystery #3) illustrates how a week long house party and motor cars produce murder which require Lady Armstrong and Flo’s special talents to solve. I must admit that path to solving this mystery took a turn that I did not expect, but Lady H and Flo with a bit of September 1909 Lady Hardcastle and her lady’s maid and friend, Florence Armstrong are invited to Codrington Hall in Rutland to experience Lord Riddlethorpe’s new passion-motor racing. T. E. Kinsey’s Death Around the Bend (Lady Hardcastle Mystery #3) illustrates how a week long house party and motor cars produce murder which require Lady Armstrong and Flo’s special talents to solve. I must admit that path to solving this mystery took a turn that I did not expect, but Lady H and Flo with a bit of assistance from a staff member at Codrington Hall finally discovered the correct way, but will they be in time to prevent another death? 3.0-3.5 stars.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Clare O'Beara

    This turn of the century murder mystery involves those newfangled motor cars, races for them and even industrial espionage. Great fun for those who can afford cars. Lady Hardcastle, who drives herself, gets involved after a death on a motor trial race gets ascribed to sabotage. As usual the retired Crown agent is accompanied by her accomplished Welsh lady's maid, who shows us a lot of the work carried out by the downstairs staff while the upstairs set are relaxing. Well researched and written, t This turn of the century murder mystery involves those newfangled motor cars, races for them and even industrial espionage. Great fun for those who can afford cars. Lady Hardcastle, who drives herself, gets involved after a death on a motor trial race gets ascribed to sabotage. As usual the retired Crown agent is accompanied by her accomplished Welsh lady's maid, who shows us a lot of the work carried out by the downstairs staff while the upstairs set are relaxing. Well researched and written, this is another very enjoyable book by this author. I downloaded an ARC from Net Galley. This is an unbiased review.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Cindy Rollins

    In its genre, this is at least 4 stars, but for my overall reading, it is a very solid 3. My husband gets this series on Audible and whenever I need a light mystery or diversion I read one. This one was quite good. I enjoyed the characters although it was a little tricky keeping up with all of them on audio.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Ivonne Rovira

    There’s no rest for retired spy Emily, Lady Hardcastle, and her intrepid, sassy maid Florence “Flo” Armstrong. The pair head to Codrington Hall in Gloucestershire in the fall of 1909 at the invitation of Lady Hardcastle’s brother and his fast friend from his university days. The friend, Lord Riddlethorpe, rather put me in mind of Mr. Toad from The Wind in the Willows, and, like Mr. Toad, Lord Riddlethorpe has gone gaga for motorcars. Lord Riddlethorpe — who everyone calls Fishy — has gone so far There’s no rest for retired spy Emily, Lady Hardcastle, and her intrepid, sassy maid Florence “Flo” Armstrong. The pair head to Codrington Hall in Gloucestershire in the fall of 1909 at the invitation of Lady Hardcastle’s brother and his fast friend from his university days. The friend, Lord Riddlethorpe, rather put me in mind of Mr. Toad from The Wind in the Willows, and, like Mr. Toad, Lord Riddlethorpe has gone gaga for motorcars. Lord Riddlethorpe — who everyone calls Fishy — has gone so far as to build several racecars himself and set up a racetrack at his home. Naturally, the respite doesn’t last. Fishy’s senior driver for Codrington Racing dies in an “accident” that turns out to be no such thing: the brakes were snipped. So Lady Hardcastle and Armstrong investigate. While not quite as amusing as the first book in the series, A Quiet Life in the Country, nor as suspenseful as the second, A Market for Murder, readers — whether loyal fans or newbies — will thoroughly enjoy Murder Around the Bend, a perfectly charming No. 3 in the series.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Dawn Michelle

    What a delightful series this has been [so far], and I believe that this, the third book, is by far the best of the series. The writing is crisper, the story flows better and there are enough red herrings to keep you guessing until the very end [and was I surprised at the end - WHEW!]. The friendship and comradary between Lady Hardcastle and Miss Armstrong is still as strong as ever in this one, but you do get to see more of how the "downstairs" people fair in that world as they are visiting fri What a delightful series this has been [so far], and I believe that this, the third book, is by far the best of the series. The writing is crisper, the story flows better and there are enough red herrings to keep you guessing until the very end [and was I surprised at the end - WHEW!]. The friendship and comradary between Lady Hardcastle and Miss Armstrong is still as strong as ever in this one, but you do get to see more of how the "downstairs" people fair in that world as they are visiting friends of Lady Hardcastle's [who don't all abide with the idea of the gentry and servants mixing, E V E R]. Most of them change their mind about that and about Miss Armstrong by the end of the book, but it is an interesting look at the servant life and just what was endured by people who entered service in that time period. This was a most excellent read. I am hoping that the author writes a fourth book and will be first in line to read it should he decide to do so.

  11. 5 out of 5

    QNPoohBear

    Lady Emily Hardcastle and her companion Florence Armstrong have been invited by Lady Hardcastle's brother Harry to visit the estate of Harry's friend Lord "Fishy" Riddlethorpe for some motor racing. The ladies are terribly excited and eager for a break from solving crimes. Flo even hopes to race! Before they can rest, however, Sir Hector Farley-Stroud has a new case for them. He is engaged in a little friendly go-kart racing with a neighbor, Jimmy Amersham. Jimmy is cheating but Sir Hector can't Lady Emily Hardcastle and her companion Florence Armstrong have been invited by Lady Hardcastle's brother Harry to visit the estate of Harry's friend Lord "Fishy" Riddlethorpe for some motor racing. The ladies are terribly excited and eager for a break from solving crimes. Flo even hopes to race! Before they can rest, however, Sir Hector Farley-Stroud has a new case for them. He is engaged in a little friendly go-kart racing with a neighbor, Jimmy Amersham. Jimmy is cheating but Sir Hector can't prove it. Every improvement Sir Hector makes, Jimmy copies. There has to be a spy on the grounds, but who? Sir Hector wants Lady Hardcastle and Flo to find out. Upon arriving at Riddlethorpe, the ladies meet the servants and house guests. Ellis Dawkins has come to race and race fast, Mr. Montague Waterford is a partner with Fishy in the racing business, and Viktor Kovacs of Vienna, is a racing driver, team owner and Fishy's rival. Fishy's sister , Lady Lavinia ("Jake" to her family and friends), and her friends Mrs. Rosamond Beddows, and Miss Helen Titmus have come for some sport. At first everything is jolly, except for Mrs. Beddows bullying her maid and Miss Titmus but then as the races begin tragedy strikes. Ellis Dawkins crashes his car into a tree and dies! Lady Hardcastle suspects foul play despite the local police claiming the death was an accident. Emily and Flo's new friends beg the intrepid sleuths to investigate once more! I did not enjoy this story as much as the previous two. For one thing, I don't know anything about or care for cars at all. The plot gets bogged down by too many car details. I also didn't enjoy this story because it was missing a lot of the usual witty banter between Emily and Flo because they were separated by social conventions. Finally, I actually figured out most of what was going on LONG before Emily and Flo figured it out. If only they had remembered the early vital clue. I was on the verge of connecting the dots when it got too late to read on so I skipped to the end and went back this morning to finish it. I did like the Downton Abbey upstairs/downstairs vibe and the wonderful new characters. I also was thrilled to finally have Lady Hardcastle's backstory revealed. This book reads a lot like the first in the series if it weren't for references to Emily and Flo's numerous past exploits! The new characters are so well drawn! They sparkle with life and leap off the pages. I cared about some of them but not all of them. Upstairs we have the host, "Fishy." What a name! Fishy is like an overgrown boy, eager to play with his newest toy and show it off to his friends. He's kind and generous but also a bit dim. I liked getting to know Emily's brother Harry better. I love his witty banter with Flo and he's such a dear man. His feelings for his sister are very sweet. Even though the siblings tease each other, it is refreshing to read about siblings who truly love one another. Fishy's sister "Jake" (another unfortunate nickname) is a pip. She's very like Emily. Of her two friends, I enjoyed Helen the most. I can relate a lot to the shy spinster who longs to break out of her shell and be as mischievous as Lady Hardcastle but can't. Roz is a mean girl in the worst possible way. Even the servants don't hesitate to gossip about what a "cow" she is. I detest bullies, especially mean girls. Roz keeps Helen from finding her full potential. I don't believe Helen's excuse for continuing the friendship. The men are a little less easy to get to know. I kept getting confused about who was there and why. Ellis and Monty don't have much personality. Their only interest seems to be in racing. Viktor is stereotyped because he's Austro-Hungarian (German, in the eyes of his fellow guests). He's not English enough to fit in so of course they think he must be a villain. He's kind of single-minded and crotchety. I'm not a fan of any of these friends. Uncle Algy, on the other hand, is an old roue and the life of the party. He doesn't hold up to 21st century standards but I can see why most everyone in the story loves him. Downstairs there is a huge staff running Riddlethorpe. Morgan, the chauffeur, is nice enough and enjoys bossing around the new, young footman and gossipping with Flo. I think he thinks more highly of himself than he should. Spinney, the butler, is very kind but he isn't an old-school, august butler. I kind of missed that humor but appreciated him allowing second, third and fourth chances. I don't see him as spineless as the housekeeper seems to think him. Muriel McLelland, Lord Riddlethorpe’s housekeeper is really tough. She's very old-fashioned and strict in her notions. I didn't really like her. Evan, the footman, is an angsty teen with a troubled past. He will surely soon be labeled Communist or some such given his unorthodox beliefs that people are not stuck in their stations and the upstairs people are lazy and stupid. I liked how his story unfolded. It was unexpected. Mrs. Ruddle the cook is very cheerful and good natured. I like her much better than the awful cook at The Grange. Her assistant Patty is quite nice too. Betty Buffrey, Mrs Beddows’s lady’s maid, is so sweet. She does not deserve to have such an awful employer. It was very unique and interesting to see a friendship develop between Betty and Flo. Then there's the police. Since Riddlethorpe is out of Inspector Sunderland's division, the ladies are on their own to prevent the police from mucking things up. Inspector Foister seems to be a misogynist and a suck-up at the same time. He fawns all over those with titles, even the ladies whom he barely tolerates. Sargeant Tarpley is cut from the same cloth. The two of them can't solve a case that's incredibly obvious because they can't let go of their prejudices and respect others. I am still interested in reading more of this series! The period details and the characters are excellent enough to have me hooked.

  12. 4 out of 5

    FangirlNation

    In Death around the Bend by TE Kinsey, set in 1909, Lady Emily Hardcastle and her ladies' maid, Miss Florence Armstrong, indulge their love of the automobile by going to a week long party of car racing at Lord Riddlethorpe's estate. There are to be two races, one for men and one for women. But in the first race, the men's, as the cars go around the bend, the third car loses control and crashes, killing the driver. The police rule this a terrible accident, but the mechanic finds one of the brake In Death around the Bend by TE Kinsey, set in 1909, Lady Emily Hardcastle and her ladies' maid, Miss Florence Armstrong, indulge their love of the automobile by going to a week long party of car racing at Lord Riddlethorpe's estate. There are to be two races, one for men and one for women. But in the first race, the men's, as the cars go around the bend, the third car loses control and crashes, killing the driver. The police rule this a terrible accident, but the mechanic finds one of the brake cables cut. Someone has committed murder. So Lady Hardcastle and Flo get to work solving another murder. Read the rest of this review, more reviews, and other wonderful, geeky articles on FangirlNation

  13. 4 out of 5

    Lisa

    This series is really growing on me! Lady Hardcastle and her Ladies maid Flo are great fun and rather good at solving mysteries. If you want a funny and cosy murder mystery look no further!

  14. 5 out of 5

    ShanDizzy

    What a fun ride! With each successive story I find that I laugh more at the dialogue between Lady Hardcastle and Flo. So much fun!

  15. 5 out of 5

    Katie

    Duration: 8 hrs 36 mins. Publisher: Brilliance Audio. Death Around the Bend - A Lady Hardcastle Mystery, Book 3 by T. E. Kinsey is another garrulous adventure for Emily and Flo, as they bimble about countryside society sticking their noses everywhere they don't belong. I can always rely on the Lady Hardcastle Mysteries to cheer me up, for nothing ever seems to fluster the amiable Emily Hardcastle and her loyal ladies maid. Having grown up in the circus, Lady Hardcastle's companion is useful for mor Duration: 8 hrs 36 mins. Publisher: Brilliance Audio. Death Around the Bend - A Lady Hardcastle Mystery, Book 3 by T. E. Kinsey is another garrulous adventure for Emily and Flo, as they bimble about countryside society sticking their noses everywhere they don't belong. I can always rely on the Lady Hardcastle Mysteries to cheer me up, for nothing ever seems to fluster the amiable Emily Hardcastle and her loyal ladies maid. Having grown up in the circus, Lady Hardcastle's companion is useful for more than just repairing her gowns and arranging luncheon, which is especially useful given the pair's penchant for finding trouble. This time around we're treated to a traditional House Party murder-mystery, and not all the guests will make it through their country sojourn. Packed with all the charm and humour of the previous books in the series, it didn't take me long to settle back into Kinsey's world and view the characters as old friends. The murders had enough twists and turns to keep me guessing for a while, and the conclusion - whilst not surprising - was satisfying. The narrator, Elizabeth Knowelden, once again gave a lively and articulate performance. She handled the voices for all the characters very well especially given that there were several upper-class ladies and gentlemen of the same ages and backgrounds to try and make distinct, and neither muddled their voices in her reading nor left me confused over which who meant to be speaking. I'd recommend this audiobook to everyone who thinks they would enjoy lighthearted cozy mysteries with a pinch of P. G. Wodehouse, and anyone who enjoys stories with humour, heart, and plenty of amateur sleuthing. *I received this audiobook free of charge in the hope of an honest, unbiased review. (Click here to buy this book, listen to a sample, or add it to your wishlist!) You can read the full review on my blog. If you liked this review then please join me for more! | Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram |

  16. 4 out of 5

    Krista

    I'm really coming to love this series. I find myself giggling or laughing out loud as I'm listening to the audiobook. I love the banter between Flo and her employer Emily Hardcastle. These are two smart women that don't put up with much from others, but love to give each other a hard time in funny asides and observations. Oh yes, and the mystery. It was good. I didn't guess the ending. But for me, it's Flo and Emily who are the draw in the humorous cozy mystery series. I'm really coming to love this series. I find myself giggling or laughing out loud as I'm listening to the audiobook. I love the banter between Flo and her employer Emily Hardcastle. These are two smart women that don't put up with much from others, but love to give each other a hard time in funny asides and observations. Oh yes, and the mystery. It was good. I didn't guess the ending. But for me, it's Flo and Emily who are the draw in the humorous cozy mystery series.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Nicola

    Another fantastic book with Lady Hardcastle and her trusty, plucky servant Armstrong. I’m absolutely loving these books and have enjoyed every one of them I’ve read so far. I’m so glad there are more for me to get stuck into!

  18. 5 out of 5

    Gina Boyd

    Are there more cheerful sleuths in all of murder mystery-dom? I don't think so. Are there more cheerful sleuths in all of murder mystery-dom? I don't think so.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Rekha

    This was a bit slower when compared to the first two books in this series. Also, not much of Lady H and Flo's sleuthing. A couple of red herrings did make the story interesting and the identity of the perp was totally unexpected. The climax keeps you on the edge of the seat. Overall, this was a good read but I didn't like it as much as I did with the first two books. This was a bit slower when compared to the first two books in this series. Also, not much of Lady H and Flo's sleuthing. A couple of red herrings did make the story interesting and the identity of the perp was totally unexpected. The climax keeps you on the edge of the seat. Overall, this was a good read but I didn't like it as much as I did with the first two books.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Meg

    Another delightful addition to the adventures of Lady Hardcastle and her sidekick, Flo, this one set at a friend's country estate during the early days of car racing. Another delightful addition to the adventures of Lady Hardcastle and her sidekick, Flo, this one set at a friend's country estate during the early days of car racing.

  21. 5 out of 5

    KBookblogger

    Not as gripping as the first two books in the series but still a good mystery ! I look forward to Book #4 !

  22. 4 out of 5

    Franca Pelaccia

    It’s 1909 England and Lady Hardcastle and her maid Florence Armstrong are guests at “Fishy’s” or Lord Riddlethorpe’s country estate. However, what was supposed to be a relaxing week of parties and games and Fishy’s newfound hobby, motor racing, turns deadly. The accidental death of a professional driver becomes murder when Lady Hardcastle and Florence learn that the car’s brakes have been snipped. Then another guest is murdered and several other guests have attempts made on their lives. As the p It’s 1909 England and Lady Hardcastle and her maid Florence Armstrong are guests at “Fishy’s” or Lord Riddlethorpe’s country estate. However, what was supposed to be a relaxing week of parties and games and Fishy’s newfound hobby, motor racing, turns deadly. The accidental death of a professional driver becomes murder when Lady Hardcastle and Florence learn that the car’s brakes have been snipped. Then another guest is murdered and several other guests have attempts made on their lives. As the police take their time investigating, Lady Hardcastle and Florence begin their own “snooping” and off-handed spying and even bring in household servants to do what they do best: listen but pretend they’re not and report back. Reading Death Around the Bend, the third installment in the Lady Hardcastle Mysteries, was like watching Downton Abbey with insight into the life of the Edwardian aristocracy and their strict adherence to propriety and formality as well as the lives and social expectations of servants. Lady Hardcastle, however, is the exception to the rules of status. She treats Florence as a friend and her equal in solving crimes while she offhandedly fulfills her duties as a lady’s maid. Death Around the Bend immersed me in the social manners of the Edwardian aristocracy with authentic language that stood on formality but was balanced with lots of wit and humour. Although representative of their classes, the characters each had some “unsavory” side that fleshed them out. The novel had a solid mystery and was an enjoyable read. Reviewed for Historical Novels Society

  23. 4 out of 5

    Damaskcat

    This is the third book in the Lady Emily Hardcastle mystery series. Emily and her maid Flo have been invited to stay at Lord Riddlesthorpe's country house for a week of parties and motor racing as he has his own small circuit and is a racing car enthusiast. The year is 1909 and both Flo and Emily feel in need of a holiday after a hectic few months. But their relaxing holiday soon takes a turn for the sinister when in the first race one of the drivers dies in a crash. The local police treat it as This is the third book in the Lady Emily Hardcastle mystery series. Emily and her maid Flo have been invited to stay at Lord Riddlesthorpe's country house for a week of parties and motor racing as he has his own small circuit and is a racing car enthusiast. The year is 1909 and both Flo and Emily feel in need of a holiday after a hectic few months. But their relaxing holiday soon takes a turn for the sinister when in the first race one of the drivers dies in a crash. The local police treat it as an accident but Flo and Emily soon uncover sabotage to the car and as they start to question the rest of the guests and the staff it seems as though there is something dangerous going on. This book and this series are lifted out of the ordinary by the unconventional relationship between Emily and Flo. They have been through many adventures together and are friends as well as employer and employee and their dialogue is often spiky and very amusing. Having read the first three books almost back to back I am looking forward to reading more adventures involving the intrepid duo who seem to manage to stumble across murder in some of the most unlikely places.

  24. 5 out of 5

    John Lee

    A good start to the new year. My third of this delightful and easy to read series set in the pre-war years at the beginning of the last century. The Upstairs/Downstairs duo are invited to join Lady Hardcastle's brother for a short break at Lord Riddlethorpe's country estate in Rutland. It isnt long before a fatal accident and the mystery gets under way. Although I find as much pleasure in the telling of the story here, as I do in solving the crime, I think that I excelled myself wth this one. Hav A good start to the new year. My third of this delightful and easy to read series set in the pre-war years at the beginning of the last century. The Upstairs/Downstairs duo are invited to join Lady Hardcastle's brother for a short break at Lord Riddlethorpe's country estate in Rutland. It isnt long before a fatal accident and the mystery gets under way. Although I find as much pleasure in the telling of the story here, as I do in solving the crime, I think that I excelled myself wth this one. Having recognised the big clue quite early on, I had built up my own picture of the solution and only had to name the culprit to add by the end. An enjoyable story with well drawn characters and a few more glimpses into the previous lives of our two heroines. Unfortunately the next in the series is the last so far.

  25. 5 out of 5

    MsKingsPens

    Frustrating. The best word to describe this book is frustrating. Early there was a HUGE clue given (and then it was remarked upon a few times to boot). Lady Hardcastle and Flo then spend hundreds of pages going in the opposite direction. It made the plot feel flimsy. Obviously the book would have been much shorter if they don't both suffer from selective forgetfulness. This also made all of the constant "Emily is so brilliant" talk hilarious because her sharp mind forgot a clue that could have sa Frustrating. The best word to describe this book is frustrating. Early there was a HUGE clue given (and then it was remarked upon a few times to boot). Lady Hardcastle and Flo then spend hundreds of pages going in the opposite direction. It made the plot feel flimsy. Obviously the book would have been much shorter if they don't both suffer from selective forgetfulness. This also made all of the constant "Emily is so brilliant" talk hilarious because her sharp mind forgot a clue that could have saved a life. It's still a blast to spend an afternoon in Flo's head but gah!

  26. 4 out of 5

    Lynne

    I have loved all 3 of T E Kinsey's Lady Hardcastle mysteries. They are some of the best on the cozy genre and never fail to amuse. Clever and unpredictable plots are married to really quirky characters and laugh-out-loud dialogue. A knowledge of the idiosyncrasies of the English aristocracy in the early 1900's helps but isn't necessary to enjoy this very pleasant series. I have loved all 3 of T E Kinsey's Lady Hardcastle mysteries. They are some of the best on the cozy genre and never fail to amuse. Clever and unpredictable plots are married to really quirky characters and laugh-out-loud dialogue. A knowledge of the idiosyncrasies of the English aristocracy in the early 1900's helps but isn't necessary to enjoy this very pleasant series.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Linda Baker

    Lady Hardcastle and her maid/companion, Flo, are excited to be invited to the estate of Lord Riddlethorpe for a house party and racing week. Having recently acquired one of the new autos, Lady Hardcastle and Flo are determined to be included, not just as spectators, but as racers themselves. But at the first race, an experienced driver is killed in a crash. The crash appears to be a misjudgment on his part but later is discovered to be sabotage. Lady Hardcastle has developed a reputation for sle Lady Hardcastle and her maid/companion, Flo, are excited to be invited to the estate of Lord Riddlethorpe for a house party and racing week. Having recently acquired one of the new autos, Lady Hardcastle and Flo are determined to be included, not just as spectators, but as racers themselves. But at the first race, an experienced driver is killed in a crash. The crash appears to be a misjudgment on his part but later is discovered to be sabotage. Lady Hardcastle has developed a reputation for sleuthing, so it is natural that Lord Riddlethorpe asks her to investigate. It is a motley crew of guests, from business associates to old friends, but who among them would have sabotaged the race? Old secrets and associations are revealed before Lady Hardcastle finds the answers. A visit with Lady Hardcastle and Flo in the halcyon days before WWI is a welcome respite from our turbulent world. The banter, coupled with the respect and love that the two have for each other shines in the Lady Hardcastle novels. More is revealed about their earlier, adventurous life in the far-east. Lady Hardcastle was actually a spy for the Foreign Office, aided and abetted by the tiny, but fierce Flo. I highly recommend Death Around the Bend, as well as the two previous novels in the series, A Quiet Life in the Country and In the Market for Murder. Thanks to Thomas & Mercer and NetGalley for an advance digital copy. The opinions above are my own. RATING- 4 Stars

  28. 4 out of 5

    Mary

    I enjoyed this third book in the Lady Hardcastle series thoroughly. The main characters gain more depth and are starting to feel like old friends. And sometimes they're laugh-out-loud funny. A lovely escape and just what a cozy mystery should be. I enjoyed this third book in the Lady Hardcastle series thoroughly. The main characters gain more depth and are starting to feel like old friends. And sometimes they're laugh-out-loud funny. A lovely escape and just what a cozy mystery should be.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Meg

    I love these funny little books. The characters are so much fun. You will love following Lady Hardcastle and her diminutive welsh lady's maid on their hijinks. Their unconventional relationship and constant banter takes these cozy British mysteries and adds a comedic element. I love these funny little books. The characters are so much fun. You will love following Lady Hardcastle and her diminutive welsh lady's maid on their hijinks. Their unconventional relationship and constant banter takes these cozy British mysteries and adds a comedic element.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Heatherinblack

    it was quite clear i know the important fact they missed the first day of the first murder. but the various paths they took were still quit entertaining. i adore the banter between lady hardcastle and armstrong. it is a pleasure to read their even if i want to scream “it’s right there!” ever other page. a light and delightful murder mystery.

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