The second in the series featuring an independent and strong charactered girl of the 1920’s, Poppy Denby is the Art and Entertainment Editor of the The Daily Globe. As the Russian Civil War edges into supremacy for the Bolsheviks, London is the main refuge for fleeing Romanov family members. Those that have not already been executed.
With a cast of characters that reads like a play, we have a lengthy list of suspects when murder is perpetrated at the opening of a Russian Art exhibition at the Crystal Palace, at the same time as a large hugely valuable Fabergé Egg is stolen.
There is not a dull moment and the readability never flags. The action is mostly in London as Poppy investigates, but from time to time we flip back to Russia, and the flight of a child in the care of an English governess. We get a glimpse of the times: the plays the dress, the music, the motor cars of the period. (Certain makes of the latter were checked up on to make sure that they existed then! They did.) Nitpickers might find slight discrepancies in timeline and location, but the author rightly claims artistic licence to make adjustments that fit the story line.
It is a fun whodunit of the old school with the requisite twists and red herrings, and a satisfactory denouement to confirm – or dash – the reader’s guesses as to who is/are the perpetrator/s of dastardly deeds.
My thanks to Remy Njambi Kinyanjui of LION HUDSON PLC for this copy for review.