Fiction. Mystery. Historical Fiction. HTML: In the next Lady Emily Mystery The Dark Heart of Florence, critically acclaimed author Tasha Alexander transports listeners to the legendary city of Florence, where Lady Emily and Colin must solve a murder with clues leading back to the time of the Medici. In 1903, tensions between Britain and Germany are starting to loom over Europe, something that has not gone unnoticed by Lady Emily and her husband, Colin Hargreaves. An agent of the Crown, Colin carries the weight of the Empire, but his focus is drawn to Italy by a series of burglaries at his daughter's palazzo in Florenceâ??burglaries that might have international ramifications. He and Emily travel to Tuscany where, soon after their arrival, a stranger is thrown to his death from the roof onto the marble palazzo floor. Colin's trusted colleague and fellow agent, Darius Benton-Stone, arrives to assist Colin, who insists their mission must remain top secret. Finding herself excluded from the investigation, Emily secretly launches her own clandestine inquiry into the murder, aided by her spirited and witty friend, CĂ©cile. They soon discover that the palazzo may contain a hidden treasure dating back to the days of the Medici and the violent reign of the fanatic monk, Savonarolaâ??days that resonate in the troubled early twentieth century, an uneasy time full of intrigue, duplicity, and warring ideologies. Emily and CĂ©cile race to untangle the cryptic clues leading them through the Renaissance city, but an unimagined danger follows closely behind. And when another violent death puts Emily directly in the path of a killer, there's much more than treasure at stake... A Macmillan Audio production from Minotaur Book
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After so many years of marriage, I would have expected Emily and Colin would have found some way to balance his career and their married life. "You have your secrets, so I will have mine" seems like a dangerous mindset to have in a marriage. I could understand Emily's frustration that her husband wouldn't tell her the truth about what he needed to do in Florence, but it also frustrated me as a reader to see her take it as reason to do as she pleased to learn the truth.
Th details of the mystery were interesting. The book's strength lies in the details of the setting and history. The storyline of past was only interesting in the last half when reign of Friar Savanarola began.
Well written and certainly well researched, this is one I would recommend to fans of the series. While it can be read as a stand alone, it does take the reader some time to catch up.
I received a free copy from NetGalley and all opinions expressed are my own.
They hadnâ€™t even had time for their first cup of tea in Florence before the first body made its bloody appearance. As agents of the Crown, Colin and his fellow agent, Darius Benton-Stone, couldnâ€™t share any details of their investigation with the very curious Lady Emily. No problem, since Lady Emily has brought along a friend, Parisian Cecile du Lac, they will just conduct their own investigation. Of course, there is an intriguing possibility of hidden treasure that Emily and Cecile will look into as well. Between investigating murders, hidden treasure, and sightseeing Emily and Cecile are a very busy pair!
As the bodies mount and the separate investigations become more and more entwined, it becomes apparent that the treasure and the murders are connected in some way. Who has the knowledge to carry out such a dastardly plot? Well, youâ€™ll just have to read the tale to see for yourself.
In the last few books of this series, the author has included an additional story from ancient history. That story ties into and/or explains the happenings in the current story. In this one, the story takes place in 1400s Florence. It chronicles the life of Mena Portenari from the time she is sixteen under the deâ€™ Medici rule and then into terror evoking rule of friar Savonarola. It is a sad tale of victimization and heroism, but it does explain parts of the current case.
While the ancient stories are nice, it has become a bit of a trope for this author. It does get a little tiresome jumping from the current mystery to the ancient mystery in each chapter, even though both stories are well done.
I thoroughly enjoyed this story and I hope you will as well.
I voluntarily read and reviewed an Advanced Reader Copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
Lady Emily and Colin Hargreaves head to Florence to investigate robberies at his daughterâ€™s palazzo in Florence. Just after they arrive a man falls to his death from the roof.
Itâ€™s 1903 and tensions are rising between Germany and England, Colin as an agent of the
Emily is decidedly put out, however her friend CĂ©cile (whoâ€™s amazing!!) joins her in rather interesting methods of investigating the matter. What they run into is the widely held belief that thereâ€™s treasure hidden in the palazzo and that all treasure seekers will die. (Hence the obviousness of the death thatâ€™s just happened). Rather than deterring these two very clever women it spurs them on to not only get to the bottom of the murder but too solve the puzzle of the lost treasure.
Running alongside is the story of Florence and the residents of the palazzo in the latter days of the Medici. This was even more fascinating!
I loved the way these stories dovetailed as the search for the dealers of death takes flight.
For me the interweaving of these stories worked fabulously and took the Lady Emily mysteries to a new high.
A St. Martin's Press ARC via NetGalley
(Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.)
TA does not disappoint as lots of past and novel era site and treasure visits leaven the atmosphere nicely.