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Publisher's Summary

December 1953

Hugo Hawksworth is on the tail of rogue Cold War agents at a top-secret government facility, while back home at Selchester Castle they're awaiting the arrival of the new earl - an American, the long-lost son of the murdered Lord Selchester.

The town of Selchester, rich in scandal and gossip, is unsure what to make of the earl or his teenage daughters, but they know that his sharp-tongued half-sister, Lady Sonia, furious at being deprived of her inheritance, won't be a merry guest over Christmas.

The new Lord Selchester can cope with the strangeness of English country life, but he hadn't expected stolen paintings - or a body in the hothouse.

What's the link between Hugo's investigations and the suspicious goings-on in the town and at the castle? And will he and his allies get to the heart of the mystery before the murderer gets to them?

©2015 Elizabeth Edmondson (P)2015 Brilliance Audio, Inc. All rights reserved.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Cozy Mystery

I enjoyed Book 2 much more than Book 1 because I didn’t feel so lost this time! I have trouble keeping track of many characters but in this case I actually remembered who was who from the first instalment and the introduction of new characters didn’t confuse me!

I’m searching for a new series to get hooked on and as the story unfolded I thought I could really get attached to Selchester; I found the entire thing very charming and entertaining.

Sadly, the author died a few months ago so my search for a cozy mystery anthology continues.

17 of 17 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Very good series

I enjoyed the first book in this series, in which Hugo Hawksworth and his younger sister Georgia, come to live in Selchester Castle, as they—along with many people in Britain, were displaced by all the bombing in the war. Hugo is continuing work with the war office, keeping him in touch with the governmental secrets. In the first book, they are dealing with the death of the old Lord Selchester, and in this one, they introduce the previously unknown new Earl. He is an American, and arrives with his two daughters to claim his inheritance.

Naturally, everyone is nervous—half sister Sonia (who had expected to inherit everything) even quite jealous.But even since the trip across the Atlantic, strange occurrences have taken place—with Gus (the new Earl) brushing them off as accidents. But soon Hugo and others are not so sure. Additionally, the people living in the castle are worried about where they will find to live after the new Earl has properly claimed his inheritance. Everything becomes even more upsetting when murder takes place.

This is probably a sort of cozy mystery, but has the interest of being post WWII Britain. I liked the narration. Michael Page makes distinctly different voices come alive, and does womens’ voices well, too. I had wondered how well the transition to a new American Earl would happen, but it went very well. A very pleasant listen.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

English murder mystery with cold-war ties

Very well read English murder mystery, with political and cold war complications. Lots of English upper class and village characters, and a well-plotted mystery. You will have to read Book 1, to really enjoy this story.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Bunty
  • Burnaby, BC, Canada
  • 01-26-16

ABSOLUTELY FANTASTIC. LO VE THE SERIES!

I have just completed A Question of Inheritance, book two of the Hugo Hawkswoeth series by Elizabeth Edmondson. The book was very well written and I find the new Lord Selchester totally charming. Lady Sonia is jpher usual self, selfish and self-centred. I love how Hugo solve the murder and I do hope there will be more books on this series.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Carol
  • Massachusetts
  • 09-04-17

A Sequel Is Anticipated

I enjoyed the first book in this series, “A Man of Some Repute,” and immediately downloaded “A Question of Inheritance.” Both these books are billed as “A Very English Mystery,” and that is truth in advertising. Brit-bashers need not bother. They are sort of cozies, but are well written and have an edge to them.

I was looking forward to “Inheritance” until I learned that the author, Elizabeth Edmondson, died somewhat suddenly in early 2016. I put off listening to it because I was afraid it would end with a cliffhanger and no subsequent books. I finally listened to “Inheritance” this summer and thought it was even better than the first book.

As revealed at the end of “Some Repute,” the dastardly Earl of Selchester did not, as had been thought, die without a male heir. Turns out a secret marriage to a young French woman during the aftermath of World War I resulted in a legitimate but unacknowledged son who, after his mother’s death in childbirth, was raised by relatives in the U.S. This son, now a history professor and a widower with two teen-age daughters, is as shocked as everyone else to learn that he is heir to an earldom and a castle in the north England town of Selchester.

Having given up his US citizenship and jumped through a zillion legal hoops, the new earl arrives at Selchester Castle shortly before Christmas 1952. The culture shock of this “Yank,” who cringes at being addressed as “m’lord” and knows how to fix his own fuse box, is well portrayed.

Selchester is a fictional village and home to two top-secret government establishments. One is an outpost of MI6, the British foreign intelligence service, and the other is referred to by the locals—who aren’t supposed to know the reality, but of course they know everything—as “the atomic.”

Hugo Hawksworth, the hero of both books, works for MI6. Forced into a desk job after his WWII intelligence service got him shot and battered, he’s surprised to find his new life anything but dull. “A Question of Inheritance” is a unique take on the English Christmas Country House novel. The flavor of Britain in the early 50s is vivid, and an interesting escape from our world of instant communication and the Internet. Hugo’s work involves painstaking searches through archives of photos, documents, and old newspaper clippings—work most of us today would, I think, find unimaginable (and intolerable).

Now the big question. Is there a cliffhanger? Yes and no. The murder in this “Question of Inheritance” is solved and resolved, but certain ongoing questions that arose in the first book continue to be mysterious. Hugo’s relationship with Fiona, niece of the deceased earl, is moving forward but still not fully acknowledged and certainly not consummated. (The pace of relationships was, shall we say, slower in the 50s.) The three girls—the new earl’s very American daughters and Hugo’s sister, who I find to be the most interesting characters in the book—are about to start on new adventures in education. And the book ends with the local postman bringing the news that a scientist from “the atomic” has just gone missing—news he imparts a few minutes before Hugo’s MI6 superior calls to inform Hugo of this supposedly top-secret disappearance.

The publisher’s website now says that there will be a Book 3, due out in fall 2017: “…Anselm Audley, Lizzy’s son and editor of A Man of Some Repute and A Question of Inheritance [will] finish the third Selchester novel ... based on her extensive notes, conversations in the last weeks of her life, and the existing early scenes ... Publication is scheduled for September 2017.” I hope Book 3 does come out soon, and that it’s as good as the first two, and that Audible will get it, and that the wonderful Michael Page will again narrate.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Highly recommended!!!

Excellent book. I listened to book one and book 2 flowed right into the continued story. It kept me guessing until the very end. The narrator did an awesome job keeping all the characters voices separate. I highly recommend this if you enjoy a good mystery.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Wayne
  • Matthews, NC
  • 06-06-16

Charming English murder mystery

I suppose A Question of Inheritance completes the two book series begun with A Man of Some Repute. Both novels are charming if somewhat simple murder mysteries set in the fictional English town of Selchester at centuries old Celchester Castle. The protagonist is Hugo Hanksworth who is in charge of a secret British intelligence service located in Selchester. The most interesting character is Lady Sonia who is the daughter of the former Lord Selchester who was killed in Book 1 and half sister to the new American Lord Selchester who she just learned existed. Lady Sonia is a catty and petty woman. The novel appears to be set around the year 1950.

Michael Page narrates brilliantly.

10 of 12 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Quiet but satisfying mystery

Like the first book in the series, this is a low-key mystery, no car chases or acrobatics. But I find them engaging. Michael Page is always good, whether narrating classics, fantasy, romance or mystery.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Great mystery in the Agatha Christie style.

This series has the potential to be a classic. Hopefully there are more still to come.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Good novel

This is a good novel with a mystery in it. The murder does not happen until hour 6 of an 8 hour book. Good characters, good dialogue. The ending seemed rushed. If you like the traditional mystery with the action with the first 10 pages give this a skip.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Ian Smith
  • 07-24-16

Excellent continuation of the series

Any additional comments?

Develops the story on from “A Gentleman of Some Repute”, but with a bit of a jump which is covered by the short story "A Youthful Indiscretion". You don’t need to read that to follow the developing storyline. Some new characters are introduced, which I thought helped the illustrations of life in the early 1950’s, and added some interesting tensions to the story. And things are still left open enough for further books, which I look forward to listening to.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • soosiewoosie
  • 06-12-16

Good old vintage style crime

A good lad fashioned style mystery, with interesting characters. The narrator is excellent. I hope here will be more of these stories.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • martyn
  • 02-24-17

Excellent

I thoroughly enjoyed this book the second in a series, after enjoying book one. This is not the type of book I would normally year, but an excellent read none the less.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • AndreaW
  • 03-24-16

A worthy follow-on to 'A Man of Some Repute'.

What did you like most about A Question of Inheritance?

A good story, likeable and believable characters.

What was one of the most memorable moments of A Question of Inheritance?

I particularly enjoyed the scenes with the housekeeper in.

Which scene did you most enjoy?

All of them!

Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

I really looked forward to picking up my Kindle Fire to continue with the story.

Any additional comments?

I hope Elizabeth Edmondson writes another soon in this series.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Suzy
  • 03-18-18

A delightful reading

I love the twist and turns of the plot with a touch of humour. Best book so far.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Gillian knox
  • 02-14-18

my second enjoyable listen in the series

loved it good characters good plot love the continuation cant wait to listen to the next one

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Judi
  • 02-09-18

Denouement too quick!

Would you consider the audio edition of A Question of Inheritance to be better than the print version?

This is the second of the series and I do enjoy them - little bit like the Cherringham series, good stories but easy to read and quick to absorb.

But in each the end is too quick, too pat and too convenient, as if the author has had enough of the book. Just leave us hanging a little longer.

What was one of the most memorable moments of A Question of Inheritance?

the blossoming of Georgia

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Linda Hamilton-Ross
  • 01-15-18

I've loved living in this world with these people

I can hardly believe that I've found a jolly good story, set in a time that I love, written with skill. It's not hard to find books online that have a good plot but the self publishing opportunities we have now mean a total lack of filter on actual writing ability.
This and the first book in the series have been very good indeed and read with skill too. Not looked yet but am hoping there's more.
Well done Elizabeth Edmondson.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • sue glason
  • 01-05-18

great

Very enjoyable, love this author. only thing I didn't like was the need to split into scenes. recommended.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Claire
  • 08-21-17

Great story but...

What do you think the narrator could have done better?

The first book was narrated better - in this book the narrator mixed up voices sometimes and changed how he read Father Leo from the first book to the second - it got a bit annoying

Any additional comments?

I love this series, it's such a shame the author has died. There is a third book written by someone else to conclude the series.
There are some inconsistencies though between knowledge people had in the first book and then didn't have in the second - but I guess it's hard to keep track as an author.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Anne
  • 12-03-16

Ok overall

Plot did not flow found it rather disjointed to listen to and had to back track to get the comings and goings consolidated.
Prefer other books by this author as they flowed better and even with twists and turns in the plots were easier to follow without backtrack ing. Over all not a bad book but a bit of a disappointment.