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The Daughter of Time | [Josephine Tey]

The Daughter of Time

Confined to a hospital bed, Scotland Yard's Inspector Alan Grant is bored. To divert his attention from his pain, a friend brings him pictures of faces. He becomes engrossed with the portrait of Richard III. How is it possible that such a sensitive-appearing soul could have been portrayed as the odious villain, the Wicked Uncle of history, responsible for the murder of his young nephews, heirs to the British throne, in order to secure the line of succession for himself?
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Publisher's Summary

Confined to a hospital bed, Scotland Yard's Inspector Alan Grant is bored. To divert his attention from his pain, a friend brings him pictures of faces. He becomes engrossed with the portrait of Richard III. How is it possible that such a sensitive-appearing soul could have been portrayed as the odious villain, the Wicked Uncle of history, responsible for the murder of his young nephews, heirs to the British throne, in order to secure the line of succession for himself? Grant reconsiders 500-year-old evidence pertaining to one of the most intriguing mysteries of all time: Who really killed the two princes in the Tower of London?

Tey's answer to this question has provoked controversy and caused this title to be ranked as the 4th Best Mystery of all time by the Mystery Writers of America!

©1951 Elizabeth MacKintosh; (P)2009 BBC Audio

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.1 (358 )
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4.2 (234 )
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4.3 (234 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Sheila cleburne, TX, United States 06-07-09
    Sheila cleburne, TX, United States 06-07-09 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "very interesting"

    I am not a history buff, and know little about English history, including Richard III. I know and understand much more now after having listened to this book. It is fascinating to follow the logic and the evidence that is used to expose the "untruths" our historians have been recounting. The author did an excellent job of explaining to a listener knows nothing about this time or its politics enough to comprehend the meaning of the revelations being exposed. I was a bit disappointed to see it end.

    The story itself is a little simplistic, but I learned later that this book was published in the 1950's, well before cell phones, the Internet, and the onset of our skepticism, so I found I could forgive this. Don't expect a great literary expose on Richard III and his hapless nephews. And don't expect any proofs or hard evidence. The author makes no claims for either. But further investigations disclosed that these are truly not new ideas, even to this century. In fact, true historians for this period will probably be fully aware of this theory, and may even endorse it.

    I came away questioning what other historical accounts are the result of political censorship, especially in these modern times.

    Judge for yourself. I think most will enjoy it. Some will not be able to get past the history. Their loss, I fear.

    21 of 21 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mary Denton, TX, USA 07-07-10
    Mary Denton, TX, USA 07-07-10 Member Since 2006
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    "Great Interpretation of a Classic"

    As a reader of English history, mystery fiction, and a fan of Derek Jacobi, I thoroughly enjoyed this reading of a mystery classic. My sister, a mystery fan, was familiar with this book, but I had never read it. I'm glad I waited for the audio version. Jacobi brings just the right narrative emphasis to this classic story by a respected novelist that provides a reasoned theory as to the REAL identity of the murderer of the young English princes in the Tower of London. Overall, I found it listenable, entertaining, and satisfying!

    10 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Margaret Alameda, CA, United States 02-04-13
    Margaret Alameda, CA, United States 02-04-13 Member Since 2008
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    "Now they've found Richard III"

    I was reminded of this classic in my audio library when I read about the news that the remains of Richard III had been found. This is one of the books that made me a fan of historical fiction. It's a great plot device to have all the evidence examined from a modern perspective by a police detective who is confined to hospital bed and working on the "cold case of Richard III" to stop himself from dying of boredom as he recuperates. I was convinced by the conclusion he reached and this is the version of the princes in the tower that has stayed with me. Also, this is also the book that sent me looking for more works by Josephine Tay. It was worth the credit. I recommend it.

    8 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Christopher P. 04-21-10 Member Since 2005
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    "More Josephine Tey, please!"

    I was very happy to see a Josephine Tey mystery made available on audio! And Derek Jacobi is a real treat to listen to! But, I do agree with an earlier reviewer who questioned the choice of this particular novel for a first audiobook. I can only hope that more Inspector Grant mysteries become available very soon!!

    8 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ki Seattle, WA 08-30-09
    Ki Seattle, WA 08-30-09 Member Since 2008
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    "Charming"

    This was a delightful short read. Overall, the narrator was excellent.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Livia Tucson, AZ, United States 06-18-12
    Livia Tucson, AZ, United States 06-18-12 Member Since 2012
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    "Derek Jacobi made this purchase!!"

    I read this book 20 years ago, and it opened my eyes to the allusion of history as truth. Ever since, I have been doubtful that the Shakespearian view of Richard III had much merit. And while the storyline is pedantic and kind of slow moving, Derek Jacobi's inflections, varied accents, and characterizations pumped real life into the plot. I laughed out loud at some of the exchanges between characters, because he made them so entertaining. Altogether, an audio experience worth the purchase.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sitting Pretty 02-14-12 Member Since 2004
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    "One of the first historical novels"
    If you could sum up The Daughter of Time in three words, what would they be?

    Excellent, well written. I first came across this over 25 years ago and while I've listened to hundreds of books since then, I still enjoyed this one.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Richard III came off poorly in Shakespear's version of his life and this opened my eyes to a much different man who might have very well been a good king had he had more time.


    What about Derek Jacobi???s performance did you like?

    Everything by this first class performer is worth listening to.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    You'll want to savor this because it ends all too soon.


    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    LeeAnne Sandston, VA, United States 10-25-10
    LeeAnne Sandston, VA, United States 10-25-10 Member Since 2009
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    "I loved this book!"

    What a great angle for the Richard III story. The only problem with this book is that it is too short!

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mim A. Houk 11-22-11
    Mim A. Houk 11-22-11 Listener Since 2006
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    "Richard III Revisited"

    When a mystery novel by a popular author makes it into the scholarly world as a source for Richard III (this happened with Daughter of Time by Josephine Tey in Cliff Notes) the reader knows he's onto something very special. A London detective, hospitalized with a broken leg, is helped out of his boredom by a friend who brings him portraits of famous, unidentified people and challenges him to define the character just from the portrait. Having always prided himself on his ability to "read" the faces he encounters in his real world, he accepts the challenge, only to find that he has classed Richard III as a good, generous, kindly judge, rather than the killer of his two helpless nephews in the Tower of London, in order to claim the throne. This starts him out, with the help of a young American researcher who brings him books and references from the British Library, on a detective search to prove Richard innocent of the crime which Shakespeare fastened to his name for all time. Any history lover will exult in this book. It challenges as well as entertains.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Andre Ithaca, NY, United States 09-06-09
    Andre Ithaca, NY, United States 09-06-09 Member Since 2003
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    "Historical insight"

    The story told here is truly fascinating; it brings history alive in a way I could never have imagined. It should be required reading for anyone interested at all in the history of England

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
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