A Dangerous Place (Maisie Dobbs #11) by Jacqueline Winspear: A Book Review

A Dangerous Place (Maisie Dobbs #11)
Author: Jacqueline Winspear
Genre: Historical Fiction, Mystey
Publisher: Harper
Release Date: 2015
Pages: 320
Source: TLC Book Tours in exchange for an honest review.
Synopsis: Four years after she set sail from England, leaving everything she most loved behind, Maisie Dobbs at last returns, only to find herself in a dangerous place . . .  

     In Jacqueline Winspear‘s  powerful story of political intrigue and personal tragedy, a brutal murder in the British garrison town of Gibraltar leads Maisie into a web of lies, deceit, and peril.

     Spring 1937. In the four years since she left England, Maisie Dobbs has experienced love, contentment, stability—and the deepest tragedy a woman can endure. Now, all she wants is the peace she believes she might find by returning to India. But her sojourn in the hills of Darjeeling is cut short when her stepmother summons her home to England; her aging father Frankie Dobbs is not getting any younger.

     But on a ship bound for England, Maisie realizes she isn’t ready to return. Against the wishes of the captain who warns her, “You will be alone in a most dangerous place,” she disembarks in Gibraltar. Though she is on her own, Maisie is far from alone: the British garrison town is teeming with refugees fleeing a brutal civil war across the border in Spain.

     Yet the danger is very real. Days after Maisie’s arrival, a photographer and member of Gibraltar’s Sephardic Jewish community, Sebastian Babayoff, is murdered, and Maisie becomes entangled in the case, drawing the attention of the British Secret Service. Under the suspicious eye of a British agent, Maisie is pulled deeper into political intrigue on “the Rock”—arguably Britain’s most important strategic territory—and renews an uneasy acquaintance in the process. At a crossroads between her past and her future, Maisie must choose a direction, knowing that England is, for her, an equally dangerous place, but in quite a different way.

     My review: Due to a personal tragedy, Maisie decides to leave India to come back home to England. However, because England gives her painful memories of what she had lost, she decides to disembark in Gibraltar to give her some time to heal before she goes back. One day while walking on the beach, she finds the dead body of a photographer. For the sake of the victim’s family, Maisie seeks to find the murderer. During her hunt, she finds herself amidst politics and with a war hanging near with danger everywhere around her.

     Maisie is emotionally distraught and grief-stricken. To get her mind off of her personal life, she decides to focus on the case. She is very observant and gives a thorough analyzation of the evidence that leaves her to believe that the police’s theory is not right. So, she decides to take the time and dedication to this case for the victim’s family because the police are more concerned with the war. Maisie is a likable heroine and the reader feels for her pain and sadness. She can be very bitter for she can hold grudges for people who did her wrong. She is also easy to read because every character she encounters seems to know what she is thinking.

      The writing is haunting and lyrical. It’s tone is very dark, sad, and depressing. One of the reasons why this is because the character is trying to recover from tragedy. Another reason is that World War II is around and there is danger everywhere. There is a sense of death all around. I also found the historical backdrop of politics to be very interesting, and I felt that she did a great job of making the story come alive.

     Overall, this book is filled with political intrigue, mystery, and suspense. The plot starts out slow, but then gradually gains speed with twists and turns everywhere. The book has a great cast of characters and an evocative setting of World War II. Although I have never read any books in the Maisie Dobbs Series, this book can be a standalone because of the murder case and it gives the reader a good background of the novels so the reader won’t be lost. This book has greatly increased my interest in the series. I recommend this book to fans of historical fiction and mystery, and also to anyone that is looking for a good read.

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

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