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Georgie and Darcy are finally on their honeymoon in Kenya's Happy Valley, but murder crashes the party in this all-new installment in the New York Times bestselling series.
I was so excited when Darcy announced out of the blue that we were flying to Kenya for our extended honeymoon. Now that we are here, I suspect he has actually been sent to fulfill another secret mission. I am trying very hard not to pick a fight about it, because after all, we are in paradise! Darcy finally confides that there have been robberies in London and Paris. It seems the thief was a member of the aristocracy and may have fled to Kenya. Since we are staying in the Happy Valley—the center of upper-class English life—we are well positioned to hunt for clues and ferret out possible suspects.
Now that I am a sophisticated married woman, I am doing my best to sound like one. But crikey! These aristocrats are a thoroughly loathsome sort enjoying a completely decadent lifestyle filled with wild parties and rampant infidelity. And one of the leading lights in the community, Lord Cheriton, has the nerve to make a play for me. While I am on my honeymoon! Of course, I put an end to that right off.
When he is found bloodied and lifeless along a lonely stretch of road, it appears he fell victim to a lion. But it seems that the Happy Valley community wants to close the case a bit too quickly. Darcy and I soon discover that there is much more than a simple robbery and an animal attack to contend with here in Kenya. Nearly everyone has a motive to want Lord Cheriton dead and some will go to great lengths to silence anyone who asks too many questions. The hunt is on! I just hope I can survive my honeymoon long enough to catch a killer. . . .
Set in 1935, bestseller Bowen's disappointing 13th Royal Spyness mystery (after 2018's Four Funerals and Maybe a Wedding) finds Lady Georgiana Rannoch, a distant relative of the royal family, finally married to Darcy O'Mara, who performs shadowy work on behalf of the British government. After an enjoyable honeymoon in England, Darcy reveals plans to extend the post-wedding celebration in Kenya, where he has been asked, as he admits on arrival, to find the jewel thief responsible for "several daring and spectacular burglaries in London" targeting high society. The community of expats provides a pool of suspects. Darcy's investigation takes a more serious turn when he and Georgiana come across a body that has been mauled by wild animals, which he believes is that of a murder victim. Much of the humor in previous volumes originated with Georgiana's inept and clumsy maid, Queenie, who remains offstage. As in her Molly Murphy series, Bowen struggles to transition her lead into married life without detracting from what made that lead memorable. Fans will hope for a return to form next time.