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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Woman Unknown
A man is found dead in the Metropole hotel in Leeds and Kate Shackleton's friend and erstwhile lover, Marcus Charles is sent from Scotland Yard to investigate. The dead man is someone with whom Kate is acquainted and his widow asks her to investigate his death for her.

Marcus does not seem keen to have Kate involved in the investigation even though she can ask...
Published on 6 Mar. 2013 by Damaskcat

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing
I was a disappointed because I had hoped that it would be as good as the Maisy Dobbs books by Jacqueline Winspeare, but it was not. It was a little too light for my taste.
Published 7 months ago by Judy Harris


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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Woman Unknown, 6 Mar. 2013
By 
Damaskcat (UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: A Woman Unknown: A Kate Shackleton Mystery (Kate Shackleton series Book 4) (Kindle Edition)
A man is found dead in the Metropole hotel in Leeds and Kate Shackleton's friend and erstwhile lover, Marcus Charles is sent from Scotland Yard to investigate. The dead man is someone with whom Kate is acquainted and his widow asks her to investigate his death for her.

Marcus does not seem keen to have Kate involved in the investigation even though she can ask questions and get answers where he might not be able to. Kate also has a case of her own to investigate - Deirdre Fitzpatrick - a young married woman who is causing her husband concern by disappearing for days at a time.

This is the fourth book in this intriguing mystery series set in nineteen twenties West Yorkshire. It is well written with an interesting heroine and the era is brought vividly to life. I like Kate's employee, Sykes the ex-policeman and he plays quite a big part in this episode.

The period details are well done and I enjoy the background because I used to live in the area myself and have stayed more recently in the Metropole. I like the way the author demonstrates the problems Kate faces as a single woman though her status as a widow gives her more options than she would have as a spinster. If you want a mystery series which is not set in London or the Home Counties then try this one - it is something a bit different.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent and complicated plot., 29 Mar. 2013
I bought this because the cover was so inviting and the concept of "a woman unknown" had possibilities for an intriguing read. And, yes, it was an intriguing read. The author manages to make Kate Shackleton human without being arch - are you listening Daisy Dalrymple? The pace was measured until halfway through when it really began to canter, just like a reader wants it to. By then you know the characters and need to know where they are going. The threads of the plot were interwoven with skill and the whole thing was that wonderful word - readable. I also loved the way the author did not show off her research but slipped in snippets of information that wove seamlessly into the narrative. For instance I had no idea Catholics were called 'left-footers'. The descriptions of Leeds in the early 1920s made an excellent backdrop for the characters and Frances Brody used it to good effect.

What was a real "speed-bump" for me, was the change from first person to third person point of view, which made me wonder if that was the only way the author could communicate the next bit of the plot. I can cope with third person points of view from different persons, but if a book starts in the first person, for this reader, it should stay there. The other thing I found a little unbelievable was the way every last end was tied neatly. However, that said, Frances Brody writes cozies and such things are the nature of the cozy crime genre, so perhaps I am being unfair here. What I will say - loudly - is that the Kate Shackleton stories deserve to be right up there with the likes of Ann Granger et al and I can also see that Kate would make an excellent series detective for the television a la Hetty Wainthrop or Rosemary and Thyme.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Highly enjoyable Cosy Crime, 5 May 2013
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Frances Brody produces a Crime novel in the style classic to her chosen setting and, with Kate Shackleton's love of her old Jowett motor, readers cannot help loving her.

Kate's strata of society, just before the financial crash, means that she can slip quietly between the male world of the Police, the seedier world of the poor, and the hypocritical world of those purporting to be their betters - without seeming to be a threat to any of them. Along the way readers learn a lot about the mores of the period.

If you like your murders non-too-violent this is a book for you.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very good read, 1 Jan. 2014
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This review is from: A Woman Unknown: A Kate Shackleton Mystery (Kate Shackleton series Book 4) (Kindle Edition)
I have read the other books in this series and thoroughly enjoyed them. This one is just as good as them. A really good plot with many turns good believable characters, I did not guess the outcome and it came as a surprise. I highly recommend this book and this author.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Kate wins again!, 3 Nov. 2012
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Saracen's Bob (Norfolk, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: A Woman Unknown: A Kate Shackleton Mystery (Kate Shackleton series Book 4) (Kindle Edition)
Superb fourth outing for Ms Brody's excellent Kate Shackleton. This series just gets better and better.
As beautifully and cleverly plotted as ever with intriguing, interesting and well-drawn characters (as ever!). There is a big clue to the murderer about two thirds of the way through the story but then there are enough twists and turns to keep you guessing right through to the end. I'm not going to say whether that big clue is a red herring or not!
Any fan of detective fiction will enjoy Frances Brody's books. They chime with the 'golden age' of Christie and Sayers - they are set in the 1920's - but have a slightly harder edge. Ms Brody is not afraid to explore the seamier aspects of human motivation.
Mrs Shackleton is a feisty, resourceful, determined and perceptive private investigator. Like all great fictional detectives she has her 'entourage' of assistants - her 'bagman' former Constable Sykes; her redoubtable housekeeper Mrs Sugden; her senior policeman father; her aristocratic mother (and socialite aunts); and prim Mr Duffield the archivist of the local newspaper. 'A Woman Unknown' introduces a couple of new characters who I feel sure we will be seeing again helping Kate in future cases.
This book can be read without any prior knowledge of the preceeding books in the series. However, if you are new to Mrs Shackleton I would suggest that you begin with 'Dying in the Wool' and proceed through 'A Medal for Murder' and 'Death in the Afternoon' before taking this on - it will increase your enjoyment.
In summary, Ms Brody's Kate Shackleton novels are charming, gripping and utterly satisfying. I eagerly anticipate the next instalment.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good read, 22 Jun. 2013
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Olga A. Baird (Birmingham, West Midlands United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: A Woman Unknown: A Kate Shackleton Mystery (Kate Shackleton series Book 4) (Kindle Edition)
Interesting plot, elegantly and beautifully expressed in writing, clever heroine. It is a detective story of a good quality. Recommended.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars step back in time, 23 Nov. 2013
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as always a brilliant story line keeps you guessing right up until the end easy reading just enjoyable and relaxing
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars kate shackelton, 12 Jun. 2013
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good read for all the family you dont know what is happening next in book very good value for money
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mrs K Shackleton continues to thrive......., 21 Mar. 2013
This review is from: A Woman Unknown: A Kate Shackleton Mystery (Kate Shackleton series Book 4) (Kindle Edition)
Having read the series I am delighted as I observe a character develop and progress. Trouble is I am a tad addicted to this series and hope that Ms F Brody continues her good work and churn some more stories out, please.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Continuing intrigue and success, 3 Mar. 2013
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The latest Kate Shackleton book is another page-turner. The 1920s setting gives an extra "edge" to the writing especially as the author introduces the shocked and disapproving attitudes of a more formal era which can appear strange in the 2010s. I loved this book - an intriguing plot,interesting characters and well-crafted twists and turns. I hope this series will continue for a long time.
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