Book: The Blackstone Key

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This book was written by Rose Melikan and published in 2008; I "read" it as an audiobook - a format I increasingly find myself using - and enjoyed it immensely. In style it is Historical Romance and Mystery combined and is set in the year 1795, mostly in East Anglia.

The story concerns the adventure of a young lady, Mary Finch, who has been orphaned and then receives a message from her estranged Uncle requesting her to come and see him at his country house, White Ladies, in Suffolk. The story is introduced realistically - the nervousness of an inexperienced lady setting out into the world came through very well. On the way she meets various people and is thrown into adventure even before reaching the House.  To say much more would reveal too much about the plot, but needless to say there is a man - well, several men - and some "bad goings-on", and intrigue, murder and bravery all mixed with a dash of country air and old fashioned values. And yes, we do get to find out what a Blackstone Key is, and it does make sense!

The book was read by Jane Collingwood, who in my opinion did an excellent job, not just in phrasing and intonation but also in portraying the characters, both men and women. I never found her reading style to get in the way of the story, which is something which I find irritating in some other readers.

The writing style led me on, wanting to hear the next part, and I was in general never disappointed. I say in general because the finale did seem a bit weak and although "the right things happened" I do feel it could have been better. Nevertheless it didn't spoil an otherwise lovely book. Recommended.

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