96 of 103 people found the following review helpful
THERE IS MORE TO THIS THAN MEETS THE EYE..,
This review is from: The Daughter Of Time (Paperback)
This is a wonderful genre bending book...part mystery, part history. Written by Scotswoman Elizabeth MacIntosh, who wrote under the pen name Josephine Tey, it was first published in 1951. It is tragic that the author died in 1952 and was never to know the pleasure that this book would bring to generations of readers and that the Mystery Writers of America would ultimately rank it fourth among the one hundred best mysteries ever written.
The title of the book is derived from a historical source, as it is attributable to Sir Francis Bacon, "For truth is rightly named after the daughter of time, and not of authority." The book itself is not a traditional mystery but rather an application of deductive reasoning to an actual historical event. The event in question is the murder of the princes in the tower, sons of King Edward IV, allegedly by their uncle, Richard III, who eventually usurped the English throne after the death of his brother. It has been widely held that Richard III did, indeed, murder the two young princes, his nephews, in order to secure his claim to the throne.
The reader is introduced to Scotland Yard Inspector Alan Grant, who is hospitalized and recovering from injuries sustained in the line of duty. While convalescing, he becomes intrigued by a picture of a portrait of Richard III, a likeness with which he is unfamiliar. Grant is puzzled that someone with such a sensitive face could have been such a monster as to murder his two nephews in cold blood. So, our intrepid Inspector decides that he will reconsider the evidence upon which such a dastardly assumption has been based. With the help of an American researcher doing the necessary legwork, Grant compiles enough archival historical fact that incrementally helps him formulate a new theory as to who actually may have murdered the princes in the tower.
This analysis and reformulation is done as though it were being argued to a jury. Indeed, so persuasive is Inspector Grant through the application of some insightful deductive reasoning and clever dialogue that the reader comes away thinking that Grant has solved one of the most intriguing historical mysteries of all time. This is certainly an unusual book conceptually but one that succeeds brilliantly. It should appeal to those readers who enjoy having a mystery unraveled, as well as to those who harbor a love of English history. Bravo!
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Initial post: 28 Oct 2011 13:39:51 BDT
Robert. Ferrieux says:
This book certainly gave me food for thought about Richard III . We all see him as Shakespeare (and, brilliantly, Laurence Olivier) manipulated us into seeing him. But Tey's viewpoint puts him into a completely different position....one which I'm very much tempted to consider!
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