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» » A Very Private Enterprise
A Very Private Enterprise


Elizabeth Ironside


A Very Private Enterprise


Mystery, Thriller & Suspense

PDF ebook size:

1520 kb

ePub ebook size:

1279 kb

Fb2 ebook size:

1174 kb

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Fontana / Collins; Paperback edition (1986)





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A Very Private Enterprise by Elizabeth Ironside

Over the past five years I have read the entire oeuvre of Elizabeth Ironside with pleasure, ironically ending my reading with her first novel, A Very Private Enterprise. Ms. Ironside is a talented writer in the tradition of the English mystery, but she always gives you a little something more, which makes her a pleasure to read.

In this case, that little something more is the setting, which is a diplomatic post in post-Raj India. Hugo Frencham, a high-level civil servant and collector of Tibetan antiquities is found dead one morning, stabbed by a ritual dagger. Whitehall dispatches George Sinclair to solve the murder and clean up the mess. The identity of the murderer is known almost from the first by the reader but not by the characters involved, making this a whydunnit rather than a whodunnit and this and the slightly skewed setting make for a very good read.

Several things are wrong with Frencham's life. First of all he has entirely too much money both in accounts, antiquities and other treasures found in his house after his death. No matter how Sinclair tries to square it Frencham's possessions just don't match up with his salary and there is the hint that he may have been spying or selling secrets. During his investigation of the facts, Sinclair meets and falls in love with Janey, a friend of Frencham's and Janey states that the investigation is a non-starter because no life, no love no personality can be simply unpacked linking motive a to action b, though ironically it is to Janey that the murders truth is finally revealed.

The writing is solid and literary in the tradition of the English mystery and the characters are well-developed enough to be real though a few standard British archetypes do sneak in. Violence and sex are kept to a tasteful minimum. Highly recommended to fans of English mysteries as is all of Elizabeth Ironside's work.
Interesting - I learned a lot about India and some of their customs. A quick read and very little sex/violence and what's there is not dwelt upon nor is it gratuitous. The author assumes that her readers have a certain level of intelligence and writes to that. I appreciated it.
The author's substantial knowledge of the British Foreign Service and of India add enormously to this book. She also pokes fun at various "types". The writing is excellent. Once I started I couldn't put it down. Looking forward to reading her other books.
This is an excellent author, the subject is interesting and the conclusions are always surprising even if you read the last chapter after you read the first chapter. It is a test I have to see if the book is not hackneyed and predictable, this authors work is anything but, I recommend her work to anyone.
'A Very Private Enterprise' is a good mystery/adventure novel (not just my cup of tea) by Elizabeth Ironside [Pseudonym of Lady Catherine Manning, wife of the British ambassador to the U.S.] It is set in India and is very well written. This
is a very nice Felony and Mayhem paperback edition.
This is the third book I have read by Elizabeth Ironside - she knows how to spin a tale! I have a partiality toward british mystery writers - she was not a disappoinment.
A Very Private Enterprise is the third book I've read from Elizabeth Ironsides. All that I have read are sophisticated and well written, frequently with an international twist.

One of my great recent finds. I've passed her books on to several friends with rave reviews from all. Try it!

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