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  • His Majesty's Hope: A Maggie Hope Mystery, Book 3

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By Susan Elia MacNeal
    • Narrated By Susan Duerden
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    World War II has finally come home to Britain, but it takes more than nightly air raids to rattle intrepid spy and expert code breaker Maggie Hope. After serving as a secret agent to protect Princess Elizabeth at Windsor Castle, Maggie is now an elite member of the Special Operations Executive–a black ops organization designed to aid the British effort abroad–and her first assignment sends her straight into Nazi-controlled Berlin, the very heart of the German war machine. Relying on her quick wit and keen instincts, Maggie infiltrates the highest level of Berlin society, gathering information to pass on to London headquarters. But the secrets she unveils will expose a darker, more dangerous side of the war–and of her own past.

    Carol says: "A YA Mystery that Isn't... Quite"
    "A YA Mystery that Isn't... Quite"
    Would you try another book from Susan Elia MacNeal and/or Susan Duerden?

    Probably not.

    Has His Majesty's Hope turned you off from other books in this genre?

    No. This series just doesn't measure up.

    What do you think the narrator could have done better?

    The narrator has a pleasant voice, and does accents well. If she wanted to imitate a German accent, though, she should have researched it a bit better. Her "German" comes across a bit too much like what you'd hear in a cartoon. A little too much V for W and little else that sounds German. Her narration tends to have a sing song quality that could be improved on.

    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from His Majesty's Hope?

    The decision to include a PG sex scene was awkward and didn't fit. This series seems to be aimed at YA, and the sex neither added to the characterization nor moved the plot along.

    Any additional comments?

    The author has obviously done a lot of research on swing dance and jazz. She includes too much, though. Describing a swing dance would be fine, and in keeping with the book... Including a long list of dance moves was out of place.

    The book doesn't seem to be able to decide what audience is wanted. The writing style and characterization is more Young Adult than adult, but the author includes a homosexual character and his affairs as well as an awkward sex scene. Sex can be included in YA if it is handled properly, but this scene comes across as awkward and self conscious.

    The characterization and action remind me of the Nancy Drew books I read as a child. I have read three by this author, because I hoped the awkwardness of the first one might have been a fluke. The author writes smooth, easy to read prose, but the characters are rather flat and the plot is very predictable.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Her Royal Spyness: A Royal Spyness Mystery

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By Rhys Bowen
    • Narrated By Katherine Kellgren

    Georgie, aka Lady Victoria Georgiana Charlotte Eugenie, cousin of King George V of England, is penniless and trying to survive on her own as an ordinary person in London in 1932. So far she has managed to light a fire and boil an egg... She's gate-crashed a wedding... She's making money by secretly cleaning houses... And she's been asked to spy for Her Majesty the Queen.

    Alice says: "Happy addition to a difficult genre"
    "First of a series"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Her Royal Spyness to be better than the print version?

    I haven't read the print version of this novel, but the audio one is excellent. I have bought stories I liked before and been so put off by the reader that I couldn't finish them. Most women readers can't do a believable male voice, but not only can Kellgren handle upper class British, Cockney and Irish accents, she does a male that sounds male. I'm going to look for her name for future purchases.

    Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

    The plot is light and fun. Georgiana is believable and spunky. Belinda is just plain irritating. Darcy is tantalizing.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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