Book Review: Death of a Dishonorable Gentleman by Tessa Arlen


Publication Date: January 6, 2015 Minotaur Books Formats: eBook, Hardcover

Genre: Historical Mystery

Lady Montfort has been planning her annual summer costume ball for months, and with scrupulous care. Pulling together the food, flowers and a thousand other details for one of the most significant social occasions of the year is her happily accepted responsibility. But when her husband’s degenerate nephew is found murdered, it’s more than the ball that is ruined. In fact, Lady Montfort fears that the official police enquiry, driven by petty snobbery and class prejudice, is pointing towards her son as a potential suspect.

Taking matters into her own hands, the rather over-imaginative countess enlists the help of her pragmatic housekeeper, Mrs. Jackson, to investigate the case, track down the women that vanished the night of the murder, and clear her son’s name. As the two women search for a runaway housemaid and a headstrong young woman, they unearth the hidden lives of Lady Montfort’s close friends, servants and family and discover the identity of a murderer hiding in plain sight.

In this enchanting debut sure to appeal to fans of Downton Abbey, Tessa Arlen draws readers into a world exclusively enjoyed by the rich, privileged classes and suffered by the men and women who serve them. Death of a Dishonorable Gentleman is an elegant mystery filled with intriguing characters and fascinating descriptions of Edwardian life—a superb treat for those who love British novels.

A Party for Winston, the second book in the series to be released in January 2016.

My Thoughts:

I had a real difficult time writing this review or starting it-if you will. I have two minds about this book. When reviewing a book that is a debut novel I take in a couple of considerations. Often times I come across debut novels that started off strong from the beginning and carried that same momentum throughout. For me, I have to say that this was not the case in this story. Now before you set a frown on your face, please hear me out. When I first saw this book. I was impressed with the title, book cover and premise. All three are fabulous! As I begun to read the story there wasn’t a character that was grabbing my attention-at first and I felt the character development needed to by flushed out a bit more in the beginning. It wasn’t until a little over half way through that the character development or the story really picked up for me. When it did, I was enthralled with the writer’s grasp of writing mystery. She did a brilliant job with weaving the mystery together and left me guessing throughout who done it. That is a sign of a brilliant mystery writer.

I enjoyed the relationship/partnership to solve the murder that developed between the housekeeper and the lady of the house! I love how that was told in the story. They make a great pair! I would have liked to have seen Lord Montfort play a bigger role in the story. I liked him and wanted to read more about him. I felt all the characters played an important role in the story. Great period and setting to write a mystery story and I will definitely be on the lookout for more books by this author.

Stephanie M. Hopkins

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About the Author

tessa arlen

TESSA ARLEN, the daughter of a British diplomat, had lived in or visited her parents in Singapore, Cairo, Berlin, the Persian Gulf, Beijing, Delhi and Warsaw by the time she was sixteen. She came to the U.S. in 1980 and worked as an H.R. recruiter for the Los Angeles Olympic Organizing Committee for the 1984 Olympic Games, where she interviewed her future husband for a job. DEATH OF A DISHONORABLE GENTLEMAN is Tessa’s first novel. She lives in Bainbridge Island, Washington.

For more information please visit Tessa Arlen’s website. Read Tessa Arlen’s blog at Redoubtable Edwardians. You can also connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads.

Subscribe to Tessa Arlen’s Newsletter.

Death of a Dishonorable Gentleman Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, January 5 Review at Reading the Past Review at Back Porchervations Review & Giveaway at Mina’s Bookshelf

Tuesday, January 6 Review & Giveaway at Unshelfish Spotlight & Giveaway at The Maiden’s Court

Wednesday, January 7 Review & Giveaway at To Read, Or Not to Read Spotlight at The Never-Ending Book

Friday, January 9 Review at Mel’s Shelves Guest Post on The Writing Desk Review at Back Porchervations

Saturday, January 10 Review at With Her Nose Stuck in a Book

Sunday, January 11 Review at Buried Under Books

Monday, January 12 Review at Flashlight Commentary

Tuesday, January 13 Review at Girl Lost in a Book Interview at Back Porchervations Spotlight & Giveaway at Let Them Read Books

Wednesday, January 14 Review & Giveaway at The Book Binder’s Daughter

Thursday, January 15 Spotlight & Giveaway at Passages to the Past

Friday, January 16 Spotlight at Just One More Chapter

Monday, January 19 Review at Beth’s Book Book

Tuesday, January 20 Review at The Lit Bitch Spotlight & Giveaway at Peeking Between the Pages

Wednesday, January 21 Spotlight & Giveaway at Teddy Rose Book Reviews Plus More

Thursday, January 22 Review at Musings of a Bookish Kitty

Monday, January 26 Review at A Literary Vacation Spotlight at CelticLady’s Reviews

Wednesday, January 28 Review at A Book Geek

Thursday, January 29 Spotlight at What Is That Book About

Friday, January 30 Review at The Maiden’s Court Review & Giveaway at The True Book Addict

Saturday, January 31 Review & Giveaway at The Calico Critic

Monday, February 2 Review at Book Nerd

Tuesday, February 3 Spotlight at I Heart Reading

Thursday, February 5 Review at Layered Pages

Friday, February 6 Guest Post & Giveaway at Historical Fiction Connection

Death of a dishonorable gentelman

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