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  • Wild situations

    Rhys Brown always seems to write books that entertain me. I know that when I pick up one of her books I will laugh, smile, and cringe all while loving every word that I am reading. Her books have mysteries, quirky characters, and unique storylines. In The Last Mrs. Summers, we find Georgia traveling with her friend Belinda to check out a property that was left to her. Of course, there is more to the story. The property is a shack, the first night there a man climbs into bed with them. The next day, in search of a new place to stay, they run into an old friend and are invited to stay with her. The story continues with a murder, an investigation, and a mystery of who-dun-it to be solved. I cringed at some of the events they uncovered, I tried to put the clues together as they were revealed, and I laughed at the situations that Georgia and Belinda found themselves in. I recommend picking up your own copy and reading about the wild situations that Georgia finds herself in.

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    10 person found this review helpful

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  • Fabulous

    Saying a novel is a du Maurier-like mystery, immediately catches a reader’s attention and sets a pretty high bar for an author to attain. Rhys Bowen, however, is one of the few writers who achieved that goal with flare. In her latest installment of the Her Royal Spyness Mystery series, The Last Mrs. Summers, Ms. Bowen was not only inspired by the Daphne du Maurier’s Rebecca, she matched the the novel with her own creative genius. After all, within this one series Ms. Bowen has tackled the love of the romance genre, the intrigue of a classical murder mystery, the suspense of a spy thriller, the angst of a historical drama, the friendship found in women’s fiction, (I’m sure I’m leaving something out) and now the foreboding of a gothic novel. How an author does that in one cozy mystery series is beyond brilliant. Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier not only fascinated readers because of its gothic style, but also for its narrative format from the viewpoint of the second Mrs. de Winter. I love that Ms. Bowen named her character Mrs. Summers—the seasons may be opposite, but her characters are equally captivating. On page one du Maurier began: “Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again.” Bowen started her novel, The Last Mrs. Summers, in very similar manner: “Last night I had a strange dream. I dreamed that I was mistress of an enormous house.” Georgie, of course, is not the second wife of this mystery. Our heroine is, however, the new mistress of the Eynsleigh estate—a name remiscent of du Maurier’s Manderley House. I don’t think a stage could be set better than that even if Eynsleigh estate isn’t the scene of the crime—thank goodness! But that’s not all The Last Mrs. Summers has in common with Rebecca. Rebecca was published in 1938. Georgie is living in pre-World War II 1935. Obviously, the plot’s are similar: a young wife obsessed with her husband’s first marriage and the death of his first wife. Rebecca was the first wife, Rose, in The Last Mrs. Summer, was the second. Since the name of the second wife was never revealed in Rebecca, it’s only fitting that Rebecca and Rose be an alliteration. Don’t you think? Like the second Mrs. de Winter, Rose found herself going from rags to riches. Both stories are set in the wilds of Cornwall. Wilds by English standards are a bit different than American:) The murders of both first wives were hidden until the second wife meddled into the past. There are plenty of red herrings who are guilty of other offenses Innocence is lost but justice prevails There are many more similarities between the two novels, and I found myself looking for commonalities that Ms. Bowen artfully twisted. Rebecca may be the inspiration for The Last Mrs. Summers, but this is far from a repeat of the timeless tale. Ms. Bowen has matched du Maurier’s gothic style with literal and figurative secret passages, hidden panels, and trapdoors with the bonus of her clever whit in a mystery to enthrall readers until the very end. I have to say that I agree with Georgie. Perfection is scary, but in Ms. Bowen’s case, it’s utterly delightful.

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    1 person found this review helpful

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  • An intriguing puzzle.

    I enjoyed the book and read it in a sitting. Well drawn characters act out a compelling scenario, With an unexpected solution.

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  • Georgiana

    This was a good read, but I did miss the interactions Georgiana had with the Queen. Those were some of the most entertaining parts of previous books.

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  • A good easy read

    Have read all the Royal Spyness novels and have enjoyed them all. This one was no different, and easy read, read it in 2 sittings.

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