(The first book in the Maisie Dobbs series)
3 out of 5
For some reason I thought that this book was going to be more mystery then it actually turned out to be. What started out interesting quickly lost its spark for me when it turned out to be more about Maisie's early life and less about the investigation that she was hired for.
Instead of heading off to college as Maisie had planned, this rather inquisitive fourteen year old enters service of Lady. The Lady of the house is rather taken with Maisie's intelligence and arranges for her to be tutored, and with good fortune, Maisie qualifies for Cambridge. Unfortunately, the college cannot keep her interest and within a year, Maisie enters the World War I as a nurse.
Somehow, this is where the story jumps, actually the whole book jumps, but the war is over and Maisie is opening up her own private investigation business. She is asked to look into a rather discreet affair that quickly turns into her investigating the goings on at the Retreat, a remote convalescent home has some rather underhanded business dealings that take advantage of the injured returning soldiers.
Overall, the story is not bad, just not what I was expecting and with so much back story, the whole thing just lost its initial charm.