War and mystery: The King’s Justice A Maggie Hope Mystery by Susan Elia MacNeal
I have been reading the Maggie Hope mysteries since the first title, Mr. Churchill’s Secretary, was published in 2012. The King’s Justice is the ninth in this historical mystery series. Any of the books can be read as a standalone but readers of the series will relate to familiar characters including members of Maggie’s family.
The King’s Justice is a complex tale. By the time that this story takes place, the stresses of war and Maggie’s work life (currently as a bomb disposal expert) are taking their toll. Maggie is smoking and drinking too much and pushing for intimacy in a relationship where it does not appear wanted.
Into this tense and chaotic life come new challenges. A Stradivarius violin has been stolen. Will it be connected to the bigger cases of the novel?
Maggie is working with many Italian conscientious objectors in the UXB squad. Why are they disappearing? Are they dead or alive? Where would they go? Who is responsible for what is happening?
As if this were not enough, an imprisoned serial killer from a prior case wants to see Maggie. He tantalizes her with the possibility of helping to solve another serial murder case that is being investigated, the one dubbed the Jimmy Greenteeth case. Readers will gradually watch the aspects of the story come together.
The author has done her research and posed some big questions. I learned a lot about how the Italian community in Britain was treated during WWII. There are also questions raised as to what justice is or should entail.
There are big themes here and a story that reads very quickly. My time with Maggie and her circle was well spent. I already am looking forward to where the author will takes me in the next novel in the series.
Many thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for this title in exchange for an honest review. I honestly recommend all of the books in this series.