- Hardcover: 304 pages
- Publisher: Soho Press Inc; First Printing edition (1 Aug. 2003)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1569473307
- ISBN-13: 978-1569473306
- Product Dimensions: 21.6 x 14.7 x 2.9 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars See all reviews (157 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,611,595 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Maisie Dobbs (Maisie Dobbs Mysteries) Hardcover – 1 Aug 2003
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|Hardcover, 1 Aug 2003||
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'Even if detective stories aren't your thing, you'll love Maisie Dobbs' -- New Woman
'It's a long time since I've read a crime novel that begins as well as Jacqueline Winspear's Maisie Dobbs' -- Simon Brett, Daily Mail
'Jacqueline Winspears Maisie Dobbs is a welcome addition to the sleuthing scene....Maisie isnt a character Ill easily forget' -- Elizabeth George --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Introducing the delightful Maisie Dobbs, private investigator of love and war in the 1920s, guaranteed to be embraced by mystery lovers --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.See all Product description
Top Customer Reviews
So I read book one and to be honest I'm not really sure if I lked it or not. Things I liked: the era, the background info on the medical services on the battlefront, the general premise of the story. Things I didn't like: the overly cliched and repetitive writing style (e.g the umpteen references to "tendrils of hair" escaping from Maisie's hat/bun/nurse's cap), the thinness of the plot, the silliness of the confrontation with the villain and, most importantly, Maisie herself. This was mostly because the author does not properly explain Maisie's rather cold treatment of Simon Lynch during their courtship and her utterly callous abandonment of him after he's injured. So I was left feeling she was, to put it bluntly, rather a self centred b*tch. And that's not ideal when you're supposed to empathise with the heroine. I'm going to read the next in the series in the hope it gets better.
Maisie Dobbs grows up in a very strict social order and class system without any prospects beyond becoming a maid. But she has a very bright mind and the luck of working for a woman that wants to make a changes in society. She is given the opportunity to study and step out of the class where she was born. Then World War 1 breaks out and she lies about her age to become a nurse and help out. Not until the war is over, can she return to her studies and then continue being trained by a man that is doing something so modern as being an investigator and psychologist at the same time.
Some people have complained that there is only a mystery at the beginning and at the end of the book. Yes, that is true. At the same time, I as a reader wanted the story in between. The whole middle section tells Maisie's story so that the author can make a series out of this heroine. She builds up Maisie's backround so we know where Maisie is coming from, what she has encountered during the war and what people she knows. This needs to be done somewhere and why not after having started the mystery???
Since the book is set in 1929, cases can not be solved quickly and have to be done so without modern technology and often with the help of psychology. She is an Hercules Poirot and a Miss Marple and yet, entirely a person of her own, an loveable, attractive young lady with a broken heart.
The book is highly readable, even addictive. Other reviews point out weaknesses - and they are all correct. It is true that Maisie's story is unlikely, in that class-ridden age. She did not encounter snobbery, jealousy and class warfare; instead, her path was smoothed by everyone involved. She was loved and admired by all. Authors can become so involved with their characters that they cannot be wholly realistic about them.
As a woman, I'm not sure how men would respond to these stories, but I suspect that their greatest appeal is to women. Personally, I much prefer books by women because they tell me what I really want to know about the characters, their feelings and their personal growth. This is the real fascination of these books - well-rounded central characters who grow and who relate to each other with kindness, fundamentally good people. They live in a world that is very tough and often tragic but their struggles enable them to learn real psychological lessons and their life experience is redemptive. They inspire hope. Perhaps this is at the root of their popularity.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Book received in excellent condition. A very pleasant read. Look forward to reading others in the series.Published 15 days ago by Connie Brockway
Could not put this down An easy read when stressed. Enjoyed the storyline
Ending left you wanting to read more.
About half way through having started with the second book in the series. Good to have the back story.Published 2 months ago by CJinStaffs
Very disappointed. I'm a mystery lover and reader, and found this story was not really a mystery. Like other readers, I also found the leap into backstory (about 100 pages) right... Read morePublished 2 months ago by Sally S
Another excellent Maisie Dobbs story with good characterisation and a steady moving plot. Jacqueline Winspear really gets into the heart of the characters and paints a vivid... Read morePublished 4 months ago by Sara E
For anyone who has not read these Maisie Dobbs books yet, there is a delight in store for you. I am now on book 5 and each successive book is better than the last. Read morePublished 5 months ago by P. Adey