What would it mean to find: Jane Austen’s Lost Letters (and are they authentic?)

A Josie Prescott Antiques Mystery

by Jane K. Cleland

This is the fourteenth entry is Ms. Cleland’s series featuring antiques expert Josie Prescott. It can definitely be read as a standalone. Readers can then decide if they want to go back to the beginning with the first book, Consigned to Death, and move forward from there.

I had read some of the earlier novels but had not picked up any of them in recent years. I am glad to have gone back to spending time with Josie.

One of the interesting things about this series is the seeming insider knowledge that the author possesses on antiques. This story, which features some letters attributed to Jane Austen, describes what is involved in authentication. I found this to be quite interesting. There is also a TV show that Josie is presenting and there is a nice sense of all that is involved in filming.

The story involves murder, some interesting characters both as suspects and people in the town where Josie lives and works, and a case to be solved. Josie’s nice relationship with her husband is well done.

My one critique would be that the story stretches out for a bit too long. I think that a slightly shorter book would have pulled everything together more tightly. Overall though this was a good read that will be enjoyed by cozy lovers.

Many thanks to NetGalley and the publisher. All opinions are my own.

Editorial Reviews


“Beguiling…Cleland maintains tension from the opening pages right up to the surprise conclusion. Miss Austen would approve.” ―Publishers Weekly

“Both mystery fans and antiques lovers will enjoy the erudite heroine’s informative, entertaining new adventure.” ―Kirkus Reviews

“Framed with fascinating details of Jane Austen’s life, along with the process of authenticating letters and books, this satisfying entry in the long-running series will appeal.” ―Booklist

“Enthralling….Cleland’s knowledge of and admiration for Jane Austen shine through this well-plotted, suspenseful narrative where long-term fansand new ones―will eagerly invest in this exciting series full of surprises.” ―Shelf Awareness

“Hard to put down…a tightly plotted, sophisticated story ripe with secrets and lies. This 14th entry in the series is as freshe as the first.” ―MysteryScene Mag

“A blast of a read….A great mix of character delineation, antiques expertise, and a truly golden age style hand with plot. This is a stand out series, reliably excellent.” ―Aunt Agatha’s

Author: joycesmysteryandfictionbookreviews

I love to read, recommend books and open the world of reading to others. I tutor to ensure that the next generation of readers will know the joys of a good book because their reading skills have improved. I am an avid reader, especially of mysteries and fiction. I believe that two of the world's greatest inventions were the public library and eyeglasses!

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