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The Birth of Blue Satan: Featuring Blue Satan and Mrs. Kean (Blue Satan Mysteries) Hardcover – 1 Mar 2001

4.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 325 pages
  • Publisher: Pemberley Press (1 Mar. 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0970272707
  • ISBN-13: 978-0970272706
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 3.3 x 22.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 7,933,315 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
NOTE: Gabaldon and historical mystery fans take note; this is a wonderful series and a good one to hold you over between "Outlander" books. I read all three books, one right after the last, in three days.

THE BIRTH OF BLUE SATAN (Hist. Mys- Gideon Fitzsimmons/Hester Kean-England-1715) - VG+
Wynn, Patricia - 1st in series
Pemberley, 2001, US Hardcover - ISBN: 0970272707

First Sentence: The tall, young gentleman with long, fair hair and aquiline features lounged impatiently before the looking-glass.

It is the early 1700s, a time of political and religious tension, when Protestant German George sits on the throne supported by the Whigs who have convinced him the Tories support Catholic James Stewart, exiled in France. Gideon Fitzsimmons Viscount St. Mars argues with his father, Lord Hawkhurst, over Isabella, woman he desires to marry and leaves his father's house in a temper.

Upon preparing to ride to a ball a lone horseman attacks him, severely cutting his arm. Gideon proceeds to the ball, where he meets Isabella's cousin, who is kind and bright and clearly being treated as a poor relation by Isabella and her mother.

Two men appear and advise Gideon his father has been murdered and the culprit had been wounded. When they discover Gideon's wound, he becomes the suspect and must run to avoid being put in prison. He must also determine wither the motive was personal or political and undercover his father's murderer.

Wynn's attention to historic detail of the time, place and social structure, is staggering and adds richness and veracity to the story.

But it's the characters and story I really loved.
Read more ›
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.6 out of 5 stars 10 reviews
17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Pleasant Surprise 14 April 2001
By P. Bigelow - Published on
Format: Hardcover
This outing, the first in a planned series, by author Patricia Wynn is set in 1715 England immediately after George of Hanover is crowned king. The Whigs are the political party in power having convinced George that the Tories support the Pretender. Gideon Viscount St. Mars has returned from his three-year Grand Tour of the continent and fallen in love with Isabella Mayfield - a woman his father believes to be far beneath his son. Shortly after arguing violently with his father about his intentions to marry Isabella, his father is killed. St. Mars is, of course, the prime suspect because everyone in his father's house heard him arguing with his father. St. Mars is seriously wounded by an unknown assailant on his way to a ball that very evening - a damning incident in that his father's dying words were that he had wounded his assailant. It is as if all the world conspires to prove that St. Mars murdered his father - all but his faithful servants and Mrs. Hester Kean, Isabella's cousin.
I didn't expect to like this book as much as I did - the author is a well-known Romance writer - and I've never been a Romance reader. However, I was immediately hooked by the mystery of who killed St. Mars' father. Wynn has written a Romance novel with an excellent mystery interwoven throughout. The pace of the book could have used a boost to its speed, but other than that, it is well written. St. Mars and Mrs. Kean are excellently drawn and immediately likable. Even Isabella who is an eighteenth century air head becomes likable as the book draws to an end. And Isabella's scheming mother, while not likable, is certainly well drawn.
The mystery is a good mystery as there is no scarcity of suspects, each with a motive to do murder, and the individual actually guilty of the deed is introduced early enough to not be a surprise when he is uncovered as the murderer. The history appears to be right on the money - Wynn introduces enough period history, i.e., the rivalry between the Whigs and Tories for George's largesse, to be interesting but not to become the focus of the book, which always remains the mystery of who did the murder.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars On the way to being a classic! 21 Mar. 2001
By Brenda - Published on
Format: Hardcover
In picking up a copy of The Birth of Blue Satan, one can sense the strength of the story by the size, the attractive cover, and the book jacket information. In opening the book, one will find a solid, impressive beginning to a history mystery that could very well be the lead of a classic series. Am I exaggerating? Not at all. Patricia Wynn is coming into the historical mystery genre as a well-established author, and it shows in the strong plot, fully developed characters, and historical details.
It's 1715 in England, when politics and parties are a matter of life or death for rich and poor alike, as Gideon Viscount St. Mars discovers through his father, Earl of Hawkhurst. As the story begins, Gideon is obsessed with one thought, the woman haunting his dreams. Upon getting to the ball, to see Mademoiselle Isabella Mayfield, Gideon finds himself dealing with an angry father, a deadly rider, and dangerous politics. As the story moves, these subjects possess Gideon's life and conscious sending him into hiding and reappearing as the Blue Satan in order to save his own life and find a murderer. The ending shows us the series will be a continuing adventure of politics, romance, and mystery. Other impressive characters are Mrs. Kean, Isabella's cousin, and Gideon's employees, Tom and Philippe.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A totally engaging and eminently satisfying mystery 19 Mar. 2001
By Midwest Book Review - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Pat Wynn is a proven master at the Regency mystery genre. Her newest novel set in the era of Georgian England -- when gentlemen settled their quarrels with swords and the women have secrets of their own. In The Birth Of Blue Satan, it is 1715 and George I has ascended the British throne, while displaced James Stuart lives exiled in France. Stuart's supporters scheme to retake the crown and Gideon Viscount St. Mars returns from a three-year Grand Tour to discover that his father is a suspected Jacobite who has been banned from the Court. On the brink of marriage, Gideon is accused of murder and whit no friends at Court must choose to escape or be hanged. Assuming the disguise of the highwayman Blue Satan (and with the help of his friend, Hester Kean -- waiting woman to the lady he had hoped to marry) he uncovers the secrets that have plunged his life into danger. Patricia Wynn offers a satirical view of Court society in this totally engaging and eminently satisfying mystery that will delight her legions of fans and leave them waiting eagerly for more!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A great mystery and series 2 July 2011
By A123 - Published on
Format: Paperback
If you have not yet read Wynn's books, then you should start. She writes quite interesting 1700-era mysteries featuring believable and likable characters like Hester and Gideon. Her Blue Satan Mystery Series include the following books: The Birth of Blue Satan
The Spider's Touch,The Motive From the Deed, and the Killing Frost. I happened to read the last one first.
Then I had to read the first ones, too.

In this novel, King George I (the turnip) is making himself less and less popular with the citizens of London. The Whigs and the Tories are spying and conspiring and someone has murdered Lord Hawkhurst. His son Gideon has been accused of this crime and his fathers's frineds don't bother to defend Gideon. Howeve,Hester Kean decides to help Gideon and to find the killer in order to prove Gideon's innocence.
5.0 out of 5 stars 1715 England 7 July 2009
By Lyn Reese - Published on
Format: Paperback
There is more than a tinge of swashbuckling daring do and romantic yearnings when Lord St. Mars carries Hester off (briefly) in order to recruit her as an ally to his cause. The moment is particularly memorial as it marks the beginning of the odd partnership for which the book is rightly named. Hester (aka Mrs. Kean) is a misused relative who is reduced to becoming a waiting lady to her beautiful but vapid cousin, Isabel. Gideon Viscount St. Mars enters the scene as suitor to Isabel, but losses out when his father, Earl of Hawkhurst, is murdered and St, Mars is accused of the deed. Isabel's conniving mother instead snares St. Mars' cousin for Isabel after he takes the accused murderer's estate, wealth, and noble name. Instigating an upwardly mobile marriage for a daughter is rightly shown as a mother's prime preoccupation.

In a time with no police force, victims often resorted to bringing offenders to justice themselves, which St. Mars tries to do under the disguise of a highwayman (the Blue Satan), joining the alarming numbers of outlaws who populated the English heaths and woods. Hester, believing him innocence, sees her role as being the one to "observe things he could not see, the little happenings of her limited circle that might point to his father's murderer."

The story unfolds in a divided and suspicious England after the Glorious Revolution (1688) had preserved Protestant rule and thus denied the throne to the closest in line, Roman Catholic James Edward Stuart, the "Pretender." Supported by the Whig Party, German speaking George I of the Hanover line reigns. The "Pretender," however, lurks in the wings in France, supported by Jacobite spies, the opposition Tory Party, English and Irish Catholics, and nonjuring clergy (those who refused to swear allegiance to Protestant kings}. These anti-Whig discontent are found to be linked to St. Mars' father, and thus to St. Mars.

The author points out that writers have surprisingly ignored this era which she says is "a prefect time for fiction." Her book shows this to be true as it fulfills all this site's requirements - solid background information, credible period details and dialog, and an inquisitive down to earth heroine. The book contains both Historical Background and Author's Notes, and the unresolved ending opens the door to the next Blue Satan and Mrs. Kean book.
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