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  • Entertaining as always

    “This murderer specialises in killing in the middle of a crowd, and it’s a different method each time. I may add that this is a criminal of extraordinary cunning, and is moreover quite, quite mad and horribly dangerous.” Death In Daylesford is the twenty-first book in the popular Phryne Fisher series by award-winning Australian author, Kerry Greenwood. While Phryne and Dot travel to Daylesford at the invitation of (former) Captain Herbert Spencer to visit his Hepburn Springs hotel, Detective Sergeant Hugh Collins is left assisting an incompetent Acting DI in a possible murder case while DI Jack Robinson is seconded elsewhere. Claire Knight, a classmate of Phryne’s adopted daughters, is found floating face-down at the docks, and Hugh quickly judges that he will have to do his own investigating, when Acting DI Fraser jumps to the easy conclusion and fixes on the nearest male as the culprit. Ruth, Jane and Tinker, each resourceful and talented in their own way, make significant contributions to learning the truth. Meanwhile, Phryne is expecting to have a quiet vacation in a spa town, inspect the hotel catering to shell-shocked soldiers with a view to contributing financial support, and to relax, but everyone seems to think she’s there to investigate the recent disappearances of several farmers’ wives. But before she can ask a single question, there’s a terrible accident at the Highland Gathering with the caber toss, and a man is dead. Except Phryne can immediately see it’s no accident, even if the local cop, the pompous Sergeant Offaly, seems clueless. The victim is one of many would-be suitors of the breath-takingly beautiful barmaid at the Temperance Hotel. Weeks earlier, another of their number fell from a train; when a third young man dies at the church dance, Phryne wonders: could one of Annie Tremain’s admirers be trying to eliminate rivals? Two more women go missing during their stay so, in between enjoying the region’s attractions, their days are busier than anticipated: “Dot found it hard to sleep during the day, preferring healthful early nights to obtain her necessary recuperation. Phryne had heard of early nights but considered them hideously overrated.” Phryne, amid spa and massage, vegetarian meals with herbal wines (all surprisingly good!) and seduction, and the ever-chaste Dot gather information by careful observation, judicious listening (or opportune eavesdropping) and shrewd questioning, and manage to satisfactorily solve several mysteries, save a horse and prevent a fourth murder, while keeping certain necessary secrets. As well as lots of clever deduction, this instalment features Mr Butler’s dumb waiter, Dot arming herself against Phryne’s driving, a valerian-loving cat, an exploding outhouse and domestic slavery. Entertaining, as always. This unbiased review is from an uncorrected proof copy provided by Allen and Unwin.

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  • Back and Brilliant As Ever

    Phryne shines and solves but her family makes sure she isn't the only one whose detective skills uncover secrets.

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  • Another triumph

    Kerry Greenwood has once again succeeded in keeping the reader on his/her toes, whilst wowing us with superlative grammatical prose with some historical text thrown in for good measure. Phryne & Co triumph once again. I truly hope there’s another...

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  • Superb writing and reading.

    Right up there with the very best of Kerry Greenwood's writings. Phyrne is in her element with murders, romances, intrigue, and with the ever patient Dot always to hand. It is without doubt one of the best of the "Miss Fisher" books

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