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Publisher's Summary

Nineteen thirty-four, London. Into the decaying cul-de-sac of Bleeding Heart Square steps aristocratic Lydia Langstone fleeing an abusive marriage. However, unknown to Lydia, a dark mystery haunts Bleeding Heart Square. What happened to Miss Penhow, the middle-aged spinster who owns the house and who vanished four years earlier? Why is a seedy plain-clothes policeman obsessively watching the square? What is making struggling journalist Rory Wentwood so desperate to contact Miss Penhow? And why are parcels of rotting hearts being sent to Joseph Serridge, the last person to see Miss Penhow alive?

Andrew Taylor is the author of a number of critically acclaimed crime novels, including the Roth Trilogy (ITV's Fallen Angel) and The American Boy, his best-selling historical novel which was a Richard and Judy Book Club selection. He has won many awards, including the CWA John Creasey Award, an Edgar Scroll from the Mystery Writers of America and two CWA Ellis Peters Historical Daggers.

©2008 Andrew Taylor (P)2016 Audible, Ltd

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Kaggy
  • 02-23-18

A very satisfying experience

Set in the 1930’s, this makes a very refreshing change from my usual Victorian era historical novels. It also gives a fascinating insight into the volatile political landscape when none of the protagonists are yet aware they are on the brink of another devastating world war and are witnessing the development of fascism from a completely impartial and innocent perspective. Lydia is an aristocratic young woman on the run from an abusive marriage and who ends up living in the same house as Rory, a lovelorn young man who is still attempting to ingratiate himself with his ex fiancé. Underpinning all of this is the mystery of a woman who has left her home in dubious circumstances and whose story is intertwined with all the people in this story. All the characters are very richly drawn and superbly brought to life by the narrator John Banks. There are enough suspicious folk to make the ending a genuine surprise and overall this was an extremely enjoyable and enthralling tale. I have read a few books by Andrew Taylor and all of them have been excellent so I will certainly be back for more.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Miss
  • 02-27-17

Atmospheric journey

What did you like most about Bleeding Heart Square?

The characters were great, I particularly liked the heroine who showed character, backbone and grace. The story takes you on an interesting journey with some real surprises at the end.

What did you like best about this story?

It really showed the difficult situation of an upper classed woman who is trying to live without the support of her husband. She is neither fish nor fowl, but her courage enables her to create a viable life for herself.

Which scene did you most enjoy?

The denouement.

Any additional comments?

I think it caught the zeitgeist of the time well and how attitudes were beginning to alter prior to WW2, changes which continued apace soon after.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Flint
  • 12-11-17

I gave up on this

I listened for a couple of hours but it was so boring to listen to that I found it irritating and I gave up on it.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Mr. R. Cook
  • 01-22-18

Good story telling well read

Really enjoyed this one. Especially as I know this part of London very well. More of a mystery rather than a crime novel, but nothing wrong with that

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Malcolm Blackwood
  • 05-03-17

Another excellent Andrew Taylor story

I found this riveting. Well put together and well read. A nice little twist at the end.....

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 12-24-17

Fantastic twists.

Wow. Loved it. Amazing narrator. Fantastic twists. Would read this author's work again. Well done.

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  • Alex
  • 12-13-17

Excellent book

This is a very well written book. It is an excellent, integrated story with many interesting characters. The ending is satisfying. The narrator also does a fine job. I recommend heartily.

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  • Ms GM
  • 01-03-17

Thank heavens for abridged audiobooks

What disappointed you about Bleeding Heart Square?

Lumbering. The title & synopsis was a draw but it was overlong to the point of fatigue. Obviously this is a purely personal preference. Others may stay the distance. I found it difficult to keep picturing the 1930's as the overall impression for me was more Victorian despite the relevant 1930's refeneces

What was most disappointing about Andrew Taylor’s story?

As above

What about John Banks’s performance did you like?

Any good audiobook reading performance is created by inflection & voice characterisation. John Banks did well with the given material

You didn’t love this book--but did it have any redeeming qualities?

The essential storyline was good - it was just too long for me to maintain interest

Any additional comments?

For me, some books I never want to end & I like to listen to them repeatedly after a period of time. Sorry - but this one I shall delete from my library.

2 of 4 people found this review helpful