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An Incomplete Revenge (A Maisie Dobbs Mystery) Paperback – 22 Jan 2009


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Product details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: John Murray (22 Jan. 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0719569613
  • ISBN-13: 978-0719569616
  • Product Dimensions: 13.1 x 2.4 x 19.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 21,548 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

'Psychologically convincing' (Jessica Mann, Literary Review)

'The author captures the atmosphere of (the 1930s) with great accuracy, borne out by extensive research' (Dover Express & Folkestone Herald)

'A riveting read...it is an easy book to read yet is not, I felt, a light read as it delves into the horrors of the First World War' (Newbooks)

'So well written that it leaves you wanting more' (The Bookfiends Kingdom)

'The terrific mystery is intriguing and full of suspense which makes for an absorbing read' (Dartford Messenger)

'The accurate period detail makes this series a worthy successor to Agatha Christie's Miss Marple books' (Good Book Guide)

'She has created a fascinating working class heroine, Maisie Dobbs ... if you don't usually read detective stories just meet Maisie Dobbs and you may change your mind' (Driffield Leader)

Praise for Jacqueline Winspear (***)

'In Maisie Dobbs, Jacqueline Winspear has given us a real gift. Maisie Dobbs has not been created - she has been discovered. Such people are always there amongst us, waiting for somebody like Ms. Winspear to come along and reveal them. And what a revelation it is!' (Alexander McCall Smith)

A fine new sleuth for the twenty-first century (Elizabeth George)

A heroine to cherish (New York Times)

A wry and immensely readable beginning to what promises to be a vivid new addition to crime fiction (Praise for MAISIE DOBBS, Daily Mail)

The British counterpart to Alexander McCall Smith's The No 1 Ladies' Detective Agency (Associated Press)

Feisty, working-class heroine Maisie is a deliberate throwback to the sleuthettes of old-fashioned crime writing. The well-plotted story, its characters and the picture of London between the wars are decidedly romantic. American readers loved it; many Brits will, too. (Guardian)

A terrific mystery ... Intriguing and full of suspense, it makes for an absorbing read (Observer)

Even if detective stories aren't your thing, you'll love Maisie Dobbs (New Woman)

'Think Upstairs Downstairs meets Miss Marple - with a touch of chirpy cheerful Cockney from the Dick Van Dyke school' (Yorkshire Post)

Book Description

A Zepplin raid in a sleepy Kent village ...

An innocent family killed...

Unsolved crimes hang over Heronsdene and Maisie Dobbs is hired to uncover the truth. But outsiders are not welcome and the locals will go to extreme lengths to prevent their long-buried secret from coming to light.


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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

32 of 32 people found the following review helpful By Mrs. M. G. Powling on 24 Feb. 2008
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
For those who have not yet read the Maisie Dobbs series of novels, it is my advice not to start with this one, but with the first in the series entitled Maisie Dobbs and then read the next four in chronological order. For those already familiar with Maisie, and who already know the back story of our psychologist/private investigator, they certainly won't be disappointed with her latest exploits.
It is 1931, the country is deep in economic recession and Maisie is concerned about her business. She is therefore delighted to accept an assignment to investigate certain matters concerning a possible land purchase. Her investigations take her to rural Kent during the late summer hop picking season, to a village in which mysterious fires have taken place with alarming regularity and where the villagers - suspicious of everyone, particularly those involved in the hop picking (the families from London's East End and gypsies) - hide behind a wall of secrecy. As well as investigating the potential land purchase, Maisie is keen to discover the truth behind the fires.
As with Jacqueline Winspear's former Maisie Dobbs novel, this latest one is rich with period detail (a time when even a telephone was a luxury item) as well as instances of the gypsy language. This is the most exciting, atmospheric and enthralling of the Maisie Dobbs novels to date.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By finalguy on 6 Jan. 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
Maisie leaves London and heads to Kent in the middle of hopping season to undertake some investigations into a brickworks and the surrounding village.

While I enjoy the Maisie Dobbs series (if you're completely unfamiliar, think post-WW1 solo female detective, a former nurse with painful history), there are several elements to the series that don't click with me - Maisie's psychic abilities are up there (I like fantasy, I just don't like psychics in historical fiction), as is her overly formal thought process and communication with other people. Maisie is supposed to draw people in and have them confide in her, and yet it puzzles me sometimes why people do so when faced with her cold calm exterior.

In this book, we get some sort of explanation for Maisie's psychic gifts when we discover she has Gypsy heritage. *sigh* A little romanticised and... well, silly, for my taste, but it doesn't overwhelm the story, which is a nice little mystery firmly rooted in the War, as are most of Maisie's investigations. I do like the way this series brings to life post-war England, and the way the war has affected so many lives, the very heart and spirit of the country.

Maisie has to let go of a painful link to her past, and it is nice to see a consistent maturing of her character as the books go on. I will definitely keep reading these, despite never rating them too highly - I like Maisie despite myself.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Joyeuse VINE VOICE on 9 Mar. 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Enjoyed this episode of the Maisie Dobbs series very much. I had felt that one or two of the more recent one's weren't quite as strong, but this one tied up loose ends and filled in some gaps in the backstory and seemed to set the stage for Maisie to go forward in future episodes with a renewed strength. The whole series is an interesting exploration of the aftermath of the First World War which was still evident when I was a child (in the late 40s and 50s)when the widows and spinsters of the First War were joined by those whose lives were similarly reshaped by the Second. It's made me reconsider the wonderful women who were my teachers and who had experienced similar traumas. A fascinating social history of this period and it's social effect on women is to be found in "Singled Out" which I'd also highly recommend.

If you decide to read these books do start at the beginning to really appreciate Maisie's psychological approach to detection.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Mr. T. Harvey on 17 Mar. 2009
Format: Paperback
Maisie Dobbs is a private investigator and psychologist in early 1930s London.

She solves mysteries by a combination of intuition and gentle probing. Shades of Miss Marple perhaps - only younger and driving an MG.

The nuances of 1930s class and speech are well observed, though sometimes the use of modern psychological ideas such as focusing or visualisation jar with the 1930s setting.

All the problems Maisie deals with have their roots in the First World War. Its aftermath and effect on combatants and non-combatants alike is a theme running through all the Maisie Dobbs novels - an original idea.

Dramatisations of the novels would make ideal Sunday night viewing. I wonder if any production company has shown interest?
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Purpleheart TOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 19 Mar. 2010
Format: Paperback
'The old woman rested on the steps of her home, a caravan set apart from those of the rest of her family, her tribe.'

Maisie Dobbs is a great concept - she's a career woman - a career investigator. She uses the psychological in her detection - NLP-like techiques at times. And then the time period in fascinating - post WW1, Maisie was a nurse in the war, her sweetheart was horribly injured. There are class considerations - she is the working class daughter of a groom in a large estate but almost an adopted daughter to that much grander family. She went to Girton college and is therefore a bluestocking. She is, in short, a remarkable woman in a fascinating period.

The execution of these novels doesn't quite pull it off in terms of realising the potential that Winspear has set up and I agree with other reviewers that the series is somewhat uneven. This novel stands alone but will work better if read in sequence. This time the setting is in Kent - the East Enders are there for the hop picking and Maisie investigates some strange goings on invliving gypsies, semi feudalism and land.

I think this is a 3.5 star book - very readable, nice sense of time and place. I'd give it four if the mystery were more mysterious.
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