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Karen L. Field
5.0 out of 5 starsRegency England has a very well informed author!
Reviewed in the United States on January 17, 2018
I read this book after meeting Donna Fletcher Crow at the Jane Austen Society of North America's Annual General Meeting in Washington DC. She is very personable! I really got into her whole series, living the Elizabeth and Richard Series straight through. I'm now on to read the Lord Danvers series! Donna knows the details of each period of English history she writes about. I find it very enjoyable to read books on that period where the facts and details are clearly known. I highly recommend her books!
I enjoyed the mystery and the relationship of Elizabeth and Richard in Shadow of Reality, so I wanted to read the second book, A Midsummer Eve/s Nightmare. The relationship has changed because Elizabeth and Richard marry right at the beginning and we get to go on their honeymoon with them. But the characters are downplayed. The mystery is interesting, but has too many other distractions. Also, I am not a Shakespeare fan so some of the book dragged for me. If you like Shakespeare, you might give this 4 stars, but I thought it only deserved three.
5.0 out of 5 starsShakespear and a Mystery, who could ask for more!
Reviewed in the United States on March 30, 2011
Donna Fletcher Crow's A MIDSUMMER EVE'S DECEPTION Is a delight. Plenty of mystery amid the plays of Shakespeare Festival in Ashland, Oregon are a part of the charm of this well written novel with a nice balance of mystery and literature. Elizabeth and Richard are on a delayed honeymoon with no thought of anything more than spending time together. That is until Desdemona is truly dead at the end of the act. Lively, fast moving, full of dialogue sprinkled with quotes from Shakespeare, a delightful murder mystery that keep you guessing until the end.
Christine Lindsay, Multi-Award-Winning Author of Christian Fiction
5.0 out of 5 starsA Classic Who-dun-it
Reviewed in the United States on April 22, 2011
Hooded specters of thespians long dead seem to navigate the catwalk high above the darkened stage.
I've always been a fan of the traditional cozy murder mystery such as Agatha Christie wrote, or Dorothy L. Sayers, or Margery Allingham--the sort of story portrayed on A & E or PBS Mystery Theatre. So I was excited to discover a modern-day voice that has captured that fast-paced and snappy dialogue that you would find in a Tommy & Tuppence who-dun-it. That voice is Donna Crow, award-winning English novelist who lives in Oregon.
The author has written numerous books, but this is the first one I've read, but it won't be the last. She keeps to the traditional style but beautifully updated.
Her sleuths are newlyweds Elizabeth and Richard Spenser, an educated and stylish couple who are on their honeymoon. But these two are pulled away from their romantic trysts by the shady goings on at a local theatre. In the silent and darkened hall it seems someone is out to injure Elizabeth's sister, Tori, ... or worse.
Amidst delightful snippets of Shakespearean speeches that are expertly woven throughout the story, is a hilarious maze of misconstructed dialogue and mayhem of action. Even the police detective quotes Shakespeare, proving the universality of the Bard.
With an adroit hand at humor and sleek banter, Donna Crow combines a lighthearted romance with the dangerous world behind the curtain. And her characters Elizabeth and Richard share their Christian faith unobtrusively and with deft intelligence.
In A Midsummer Eve's Nightmare, Donna Fletcher Crow delivers many entrancing moments and plenty of suspense. Newly-weds Elizabeth and Richard Spencer take a second honeymoon in Ashland, Oregon. Why? Like the author, they're experts on Shakespeare and his plays, and the Ashland Shakespeare Festival, featuring a replica of an Elizabethan theater, is located there. As an added bonus, Elizabeth's younger sister, Victoria, designs the costumes for the plays. But soon after their arrival, the couple encounters a series of sinister events. And a murder.
Crow provides plenty of suspects in her twisty murder plot, and the killer's identity remains in doubt until the very end. Crow's descriptions of the Elizabethan theater, the period music, and, especially, Shakespeare's plays, are delightful. If you love Shakespeare and want an insider's look at the theater world, this book is for you.