We are back in London for this story and in form. The story takes us back to Lesley and the Faceless Man, what they are planning, and explains why.
Our favourite characters are maturing, as are their magical abilities and the talking foxes make a re-appearance with Abigail, who is proving to be more of a natural magician than anyone could have predicted. And I love the explanation of why the foxes talk – and especially talk to Abigail.
I always very much like the way the history of London, especially the City, is incorporated into these stories. London was built on many ‘magical’ sites of worship from its early founding, and these places become integral to this modern explanation of London and its byeways, special sites, and hidden mysteries.
Indeed, many pagans and historians believe that London may well have had stone circles and standing stones that are now buried beneath the landscape and buildings, as well as religious sites for many religions, and St Paul’s Cathedral did indeed get built over an earlier pagan temple. So truth provides the foundation for great fantasy.
The opening chapters of this book are so vivid that in my ind’s eye I see it happening.
I see David Suchet bustling and hear him deliver the words. I see his very special walk – such a distinctive gait – and take off his hat and coat.
It is perhaps because i have seen Suchet’s TV performance portrayal so often that he comes to mind, but still my imagination visualises him throughout the story as the character of Hercule Poirot. The mannerisms he used are mentioned in the story and sonthe echoes remain.
I cannot say the same of the chapters ‘written’ by the detective. He slips back into the background even though he is half the book.
I found the story very entertaining – better in my mind than the original stories even though they are intended to ‘copy’ her style. More amusing and more accessible. I still didn’t get the answer though – as just in the original Christie books there are masses of red herrings to mislead you!
Oh and the Windowpane cake is really a Battenberg so a very well known recipe, so little chance of it being stolen.
I suspect that without David Suchet the story would not have been so appealing but as he is one of my favourite actors…
There are 7 books in this series about Ruby – and her magic blade. And they can be bought as a complete collection.
3 books and 4 novellas – It is important to read them in the correct order as indicated by the author, as the novellas supply background and details about the characters and their interactions for the longer stories. They give you the history and timeline.
I thought that book 1 took quite some time to make sense until I realised that it was set in the very far dystopian future and that there is a time loop playing out; and that the novellas gave you the correct timeline against this time loop.
Cleverly written once you got the hang of it! I enjoyed the stories and found Ruby to be the type of heroine I enjoy reading about – she takes no prisoners..
Overall 4 stars but some of the storylines were a little weak, but still well worth reading.