Any serial epic that has 30-something books has to be especially strong, well-written, and have characters that we think of as dear friends, as we fear for their lives and anticipate their future. This series has survived from early attraction, to courtship, to marriage...to now the oldest daughter almost in her teens...all in a well-researched Victorian time period in England. Each murder, case, and the changes that come about in the Pitt family...from lowly detective to now Head of the Special Branch of royal and national security in Great Britain...in which Thomas depends highly, even though he would never admit it, on his wife Charlotte's intuition, fortitude, and wisdom. This 26th selection is, indeed, my most favorite, and I have not read them in proper, I'm afraid. The sojourn of Charlotte in the perils of Ireland, without Thomas at her side, is by far the most exciting of the bunch. All books in the series are a great read. True lovers of historical fiction with mystery, crime, and suspense should become close friends with Charlotte and Thomas Pitt.
**one important spoiler if you are reading them in order*** I remember this one as being a pretty tough slog. Pitt spent much of his time separated from Charlotte, in Europe, dealing with a colleague who is a traitor, if memory serves. Very uninteresting. I skipped through all of that to get to the Narraway/Charlotte half of the book. It was better, but only marginally. I was uncomfortable with their travelling together and of his crush on Charlotte. Also, justice is not served as Narraway loses his position
Anne Perry's "Treason at Lisson Grove" is a welcome addition to the author's Charlotte and Thomas Pitt series.
When Victor Narraway, Thomas Pitt's boss at Special Forces, is removed from his position under a cloud of suspicion, Pitt is in France, chasing a terrorist suspect. Narraway, more than half in love with Pitt's wife, Charlotte, visits her to explain his status and tell her Pitt, as Narraway's protégé, may also come under scrutiny and find his position threatened because of their close association. Narraway assures Charlotte he is innocent and is leaving for Ireland to prove it. It is in Ireland, he believes he will discover who is behind the false accusations made against him. Charlotte, fearing for Pitt's job and her family's continued well-being, assists in accompanying him on his investigation.
One of the best things about this novel is the much greater focus on Charlotte, rather than on Thomas. Another other much appreciated characteristic is Perry's handling of the political aspects of the period as they pertain to the novel. In some previous Pitt books, Perry has tended to over-expound on the politics of the plot, giving the reader too much information in too unpalatable a style for the novels, but too little information for the in-depth understanding a non-fiction, historic text requires. But in "Treason at Lisson Grove", Perry strikes a nice balance between providing historical background and moving the plot along. She also does a skillful job of writing about the feelings of the main characters aside from the investigation.
It is always a pleasure when Great-Aunt Vespasia plays a part in one of Perry's books. It is very interesting to find out more about the mysterious Narraway. The Pitt's new maid, Minnie Maud, promises to become as loveable as is former maid, Gracie (who makes a brief appearance). Fans of this series, as well as readers new to the Pitts, should enjoy the novel.
I did not give this book 5 stars because I prefer the earlier books, which dealt with murder, rather than these later forays into international politics. However, a new Pitt & Charlotte book is always welcome, and, as always, this is a very well written addition to the series.
Now in the Special Branch under Victor Narraway, Pitt is obliged to follow a suspect to France with no chance to send word to Charlotte or to Narraway. While he and his subordinate Gower are keeping the suspect under surveillance, Narraway is framed for embezzlement and for possibly causing the death of an Irish informer. He enlists Charlotte's help, as they both know that his downfall would also bring about Pitt's and propel Charlotte's family into poverty and disgrace. Although Gracie is now happily married and cannot return to care for the children, whose grandmother and Aunt Emily are away, she provides her friend Minnie Maud, an admirable young woman we have met in one of the Christmas novels.
Charlotte and Narraway hunt for the truth in Ireland while Pitt and Gower are on the hunt in France. But circumstances bid them all return to England and enlist the aid of Charlotte's formidable Aunt Vespasia, whose appearance is most welcome here. There is grave danger for them, but Pitt, Charlotte, Narraway, Aunt Vespasia, and a young man from the Special Branch are up to the challenge. The guilty are unmasked. Pitt & Charlotte receive the bonus of a new maid who is as good a fit into their household as Gracie. My only real complaint is that I did miss Emily; I hope she'll return in the next book.
I have loved the series for a number of years but they have been going down hill over the last 3-4 books. Seems too wordy, subjects have gotten harder to believe, has she lot her drive, imagination what? This book was boring for the first 80% of it, slow to start and fell flat half way through. If it wasn't for the first chapter of the next book at the end, totally unfulfilling. Is it time for Charlotte and Thomas Pitt to ride off to the country and retire?
The characters are well rounded and uniquely individual. I have enjoyed reading all of Anne Perry's novels. Her descriptions of London and in this case Ireland makes the reader want to board the next flight to England or Ireland. Her characters have heart and their development over time has made them people who remain in our lives even after we have finished reading the novel.