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Invitation To A Funeral Paperback – 24 Oct 1996

4.5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Orion; New edition edition (24 Oct. 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0575600365
  • ISBN-13: 978-0575600362
  • Product Dimensions: 11 x 2 x 18 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,946,710 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

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Format: Paperback
'An Invitation to a Funeral' is almost like a Restoration drama, featuring a dazzling cast of some of England's most flamboyant characters. The elaborately woven plot features comedy, tragedy and mystery and is utterly compelling from start to finish. The author makes no attempt to hide the squalor and inequity of 17th century London. Her evocative descriptions transport the reader to the slums of Alsatia one moment, and to the opulence of Whitehall Palace the next. The poets Aphra Behn and John Wilmot, Earl of Rochester are brought convincingly to life and interact seamlessly with the likes of Charles II, Nell Gwyn and Samuel Pepys. Devotees of historical fiction will love this fast-paced thriller, which is both riveting and well researched. If you enjoyed 'An Instance of the Fingerpost', you will almost certainly not be able to put this book down!
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Format: Paperback
An exciting murder mystery set in Restoration London. The two sleuths are the playwrite Aphra Behn, and Nell Gwynn, former actress and now mistress to Charles II. An old acquaintance of Aphra's is murdered, and it seems that a lot of people are searching for something that was in his possesion, but she doesn't know what. Meanwhile, she has the unenviable task of trying to make an actress out of a girl with no talent for acting at all, in order to help her friend the Earl of Rochester win a bet (he has offered her a share of the winnings). And Nell Gwynne is having trouble with her old rival Louise de Kerouelle, and having to contend with a new woman in King Charle's life, the gorgeous Hortense de Mancini, who has a penchant for dressing in men's clothes.

This is a good story, with excitement, some delightful characters and lots of amusing incidents. The scenes with Nell Gwynn's mother are particularly good.The squalor and viciousness of life for many people at this period is not glossed over, but the humour lightens it. When I first read this book ten years ago I hoped it might be the start of a series, but there have been no further episodes published. A pity.
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