The Fatal Flying Affair
7, A Lady Hardcastle Mystery
by T E Kinsey
This title was previously available on NetGalley and is now archived.
Pub Date 3 Dec 2020 | Archive Date 17 Dec 2020
Amazon Publishing UK, Thomas & Mercer
August 1911. Emily Hardcastle and her inimitable lady’s maid Florence Armstrong are enjoying a fine summer until Harry, Lady H’s brother, turns up out of the blue with a mystery for them to solve.
A routine parachute test at a local aeroplane factory has gone horribly wrong—with pilot Dickie Dupree plummeting to his death. Harry is certain there is more to this ‘tragic accident’ than meets the eye, having discovered that someone at the airfield is leaking top secret intelligence to foreign rivals.
In between strolls to the Dog & Duck and planning for the annual village show, the daring duo dust off the Crime Board and go undercover at Bristol Aviation. With international powers investing heavily in aeronautics, the stakes are high—sky high—and the suspects soon mount up.
Can Lady Hardcastle find the culprit before someone else falls down dead?
A Note From the Publisher
Available on NetGalley
Average rating from 77 members
A Deadly Mystery.... Book seven in the Lady Hardcastle mystery series and a peaceful, glorious Summer is in full swing. Obviously, that is completely unacceptable and soon enough a deadly mystery lands in Lady Hardcastle’s lap. Laced with wry humour, a colourful cast of characters and an enjoyable, entertaining plot this is a worthy addition to this fun series.
This is cute and lighthearted cozy mystery. The banter between the two lead female characters is witty and fun. The plot and storyline were both interesting and very well crafted. I enjoyed this as a simple summer read, highly recommend!
The Lady Hardcastle series is rather a favourite of mine, so I was delighted to be given a review copy via NetGalley. The Fatal Flying Affair does not disappoint. I loved this book, just as I have loved every single one in this series. I love the characters, and the banter between Lady Hardcastle and Florence in particular. We also get to see a little more of Harry and his family in this one. I love the lightheartedness, the general understated (but very funny) humour, and the silliness. I always feel happy when I read a Lady Hardcastle book! I really enjoyed the aeroplane aspect of this story, and the fact that Lady Hardcastle and Florence are back working with the government again. The mystery itself (or as it turned out, three related issues!) was interesting, and the solution was not immediately obvious. If you’re looking for a lighthearted mystery, with just the right amount of adventure and silliness, then I recommend this story. I was given a free copy of this book, my opinions are my own.
The books in this series never fail to please. The tongue=in-cheek humor and unique characters set the books apart from other cozy mysteries. Yes, Lady Hardcastle and Flo are a bit over the top but they are still engaging and the pace of the prose helps to lighten the atmosphere. Look forward to reading the next one !
This perfectly captures how I imagine England in 1911! The characters are vividly described and the dialogue suits the story so well. The mystery itself is a sound plot which holds the reader’s attention from first page to last. This is a good traditional mystery which will please fans of Agatha Christie and the Miss Fisher mysteries. .
Perfect, as always. There is something magical about Florence and Emily and ot makes for such lovely stories. The mystery in this one is good and we get a good amount of interaction with other favorite neighbors and friends as well as brother Henry. Though it could be read as a stand alone, I think you would miss out. Start at the beginning and you won't regret it.
England, punny, sly-humor, situational-humor, cosy-mystery, amateur-sleuth, historical-fiction, historical-research It's 1911 with Lady Hardcastle and lady's maid Florence who are up to tricks once again, so the fun was just what I needed today! Lady Hardcastle has managed to need a new Rolls with her own specifications, and she also has decided to learn to fly an aeroplane despite having observed a person falling out of one! There is a lot going on throughout and the mystery is well done, too. Good sleuthing and a cast of zany characters! I requested and received a free ebook copy from Amazon Publishing UK via Netgalley. Thank you!
this is the latest in a series that i really love; not least because I spent 20 years working in Bristol and know the settings for many of the stories. The author is knowledgeable about both the period and about the surroundings and the stories themselves always leave you not quite sure about the culprit. The books are well plotted and the two feisty female main characters are an absolute joy. Please keep writing these stories.
Lady Hardcastle and her lady's maid, Florence Armstrong, are a delightful pair! They are so much fun, so is their small village of Littleton Cottrell. Their gentle teasing of each other upsets the normal social hierarchy but it works for them and provides a great deal of fun never mind is priceless when they engage in sleuthing a murder case as amateurs or acting as agents for His Majesty's government. These two are not your typical women settling in for a quiet, retiring life in the country. All the new inventions of the turn of the century, the 20th century that is, interest them: moving pictures, fast cars, and now, airplanes. Lady Hardcastle's brother asks the pair to discover who is passing top secret military secrets to a foreign power from a nearby airplane design company. Of course, a mysterious death at the company, rises Ladycastle and Flo's suspicions that something else is afoot that treason. Meanwhile, Flo is desperately trying to escape performing in the Village Show. Sit down and enjoy a charming story full of fun, enjoyable characters and a good mystery to boot. I was provided with a copy of the ARC by Netgalley and the publisher in return for an honest review.
I really enjoyed this book, it is part of a series I have never read before, but it works perfectly as a stand-alone. The main characters are extremely well drawn and the “banter” between them underlines their connection and prior history. The main mystery storyline itself is fairly light and fun, although there are enough complexities to keep the reader guessing till the end. Interwoven with it is a funny sub plot related to a village show, and the author does well to combine the two. He also manages to paint an engaging and immersive picture of a bye-gone age, that draws from truth with regard to the development of aircraft and parachute technology of the time. A fun, fast paced whodunit that doesn’t disappoint – this has encouraged me to seek out more in this series.
The Fatal Flying Affair is the seventh novel in this historical murder mystery series. Lady H and Florence are a delightful, witty pairing and their relationship is one of the highlights of the book. Add in Harry, Lady Hardcastle's brother, and you have a jolly fine detective team for a aviation based parachute mystery.
This is such a fun, witty, and cozy mystery. I love the strong female friendship between Lady Hardcastle and Florence Armstrong. Their banter is hilarious.
As my preferences are normally Sword, Sandals and SAS I have found reading this series of books the equivalent of a detox or going to a health spa - so refreshing. Lady Hardcastle and her “maid” Flo are once again embroiled in a spy come murder mystery that the early 1900’s sleuths are well suited for. Leaked secrets and the unfortunate demise of a pilot sees them trotting off to the local airfield to see what’s what but for Flo more dangerous and taxing tasks await - performing in the local village show! As ever this book hits the heights.
This is the seventh book of the series, A Lady Hardcastle Mystery, and although you don't need to read the other books to thoroughly enjoy this one, I can't see why you would not. They are absolutely delightful. The Fatal Flying Affair is a fun, character-driven mystery set in the quaint town of Littleton Cotterell. There is a mysterious parachute death at the headquarters of an aviation company in Brighton, and Lady Hardcastle, Emily, and Florence Armstrong, Flo, are sent by the "secret service" to get to the bottom of this "accident." As they investigate, they learn that there is a lot more going on including embezzlement, spying, and secret love affairs. In the course of their undercover spying, we get to observe their shenanigans. Emily and Flo have been working as very capable spies for many years. They may be unequal socially, but their relationship is one of true friends who trust and rely on each other. Their differences only make them a stronger team. The dialogue is absolutely uproarious. I don't know how Kinsey comes up with the wise cracks that all the characters routinely spout. I absolutely love it! When they are not spying, they visit their neighborhood pub where they interact with the locals who have the most delightful dialects, and get involved with putting on the village's annual talent show. I also enjoyed reading about the events of this post-Victorian, pre-WWI era. I learned so many interesting facts about early aviation, and what a "cheese door stop sandwich" is. Being American and not familiar with all things British, it was fun! I have read and enjoyed all the other books in this series and I hope T.E. Kinsey continues to write more.
I adore this series and this book was as good as the previous ones. Lady Hardcastle and Flo are at it again trying to find out what is happening and who committed a murder but this time the story revolves around aeroplanes. These books are cosy crime at its best, the characters are well rounded and truly loveable and the books have just enough tongue in cheek action to be funny without being rude or offensive. I cannot wait for the next in this installment.
I have been following A Lady Hardcastle Mystery since book 1 and while they are all enjoyable, I think this is the best one yet! Their investigation into potential espionage is well paced and they always find time to have some fun and enjoy life in between undercover work. Armstrong's personality is really shining through in this particular mystery. Looking forward to their next adventure! Thank you NetGalley for the ARC in exchange of a honest review.
Another very good read from the Lady Hardcastle & Florence series in which the pending storm of WWI looms over our heroines and the core of the mystery - an aeroplane-related incident which may have a whiff of foreign interference and sabotage about it. Especially enjoyable are the relationships between Emily, Florence and the various village residents and the sibling slap fights between Emily and her brother, Harry (who also acts as their government /spymaster-ish contact with the higher-ups in Whitehall). The series looks to be veering more into international intrigue, as opposed to just straight-up murders on the village green, and I'm all for it! A very strong recommend for series fans and newcomers alike.
Lady Emily Hardcastle and her maid, Florence Armstrong, have been together for 17 years. They are not exactly who they appear. Both of these women work for the British government. In fact, they have done so in quite a few different situations and different countries. Although this is the seventh book in the series, it can work as a stand alone read. But, if you want to have a more enjoyable reading experience, I would suggest you start at the beginning. Lady Emily’s brother, Harry, has asked that the two women investigate an airplane manufacturing company. Because Lady Emily is an adventurous soul, she plans to investigate while checking out the idea of purchasing an airplane. She and Florence have driven an experimental auto which blew up while they were driving. They have done many unusual things while investigating for the government. But, they also simply like adventure. Exploding cars are simply a part of their lives. This time, as they are shown around the airplane manufacturing site, they meet the movers and shakers of the company. They are looking for someone who has been selling information to a foreign power and the same person may also be a murderer. As always, Mr Kinsey provides the reader with wonderful humor, adventure and mystery. There are characters from the local village as well as the people being investigated. Each of them seem to be a wee bit off kilter. Everyone has a story, and each of those stories add wonderful atmosphere to the book. In the background, as the mystery is being investigated, the village is planning a talent show. Everyone participates and there is a contest for the most entertaining act. In short, this is a village which is typical of the early 20th century. It is very rural, it is in the process of moving forward along with new technology and no one is beyond making a fool of themselves for their friends and neighbors. I love this series. Lady Hardcastle and Florence are two of the best examples of strong and accomplished women you will find in fiction. Although they may face danger, they are doing what they know is needed to be done for their country. And they can make a reader laugh while they are facing danger. Much of the background and the reason for their investigation has to do with the European situation before World War I. The British government and much of the population are aware that situations can lead to a war. This story is a reminder that the people who were to be affected by a war, are human beings with lives to live. I have enjoyed this book and if you are seeking a fun British mystery, this is the book for you. I received the book from the publisher, through NetGalley. I am voluntarily writing this review and all opinions are completely my own.
The Fatal Flying Affair shows T E Kinsey on top form. Lady Emily Hardcastle’s brother, Harry, works in the Government’s new Secret Service Bureau and has persuaded Emily (and Flo, her maid) to return to the Government’s payroll in that same department. A top-secret project at Bristol’s Filton aerodrome has been set back by a death. Harry is also aware of information being leaked from that project and wants to find out who is responsible. Cue Emily visiting the company with the announced intention of wanting to buy a plane. As Emily repeatedly points out, there isn’t actually much pretence involved with that aspect. She really is interested in buying one. Flo would be her pilot, although one assumes that the duties, like that of driving the car, would be shared. Both Emily and Flo do go up in a plane and each of them thoroughly enjoys the experience. The book is not all light-hearted fun. There is a one-page conversation between Emily and Harry that argues both sides of a genuine moral issue. Emily wants to nab the murderer. Harry is more interested in the leaker. Someone leaking government secrets is guilty of high treason and can face the death penalty. Emily is concerned that the leaker is out of their depth and states that “… this leaker is just one step up from being a civilian.” Do they deserve to be executed? Harry’s response is “… Hard cheese. If you’re going to step up to play with the First XV, it’s really rather your responsibility to look into the possibilities of getting mulched by some heavy chaps on the other team.” Whilst the use of a schoolboy sporting analogy to describe a life or death situation is in keeping with Harry’s character, both Harry and Emily have good points to make. Emily also makes a perceptive comment about the British when discussing the likelihood of war with Flo, “What we have in spades is an unshakeable self-belief: the sure and certain knowledge, no matter how ill-founded, that the world is ours and everything that’s in it.” This book really shows that WWI is coming – it’s 1912, after all. #TheFatalFlyingAffair #NetGalley
Lady Emily Hardcastle and Florence Armstrong are, to the outside world, Lady and Lady’s maid. In reality, they are an extremely capable pair of government agents, working for His Majesty’s Secret Service. Their current assignment—investigate the circumstances that lead to the death of Dickie Dupree, an engineer at British Aviation. The company has been working on a secret project involving newly developed parachute technology and the Service (in the form of Lady Hardcastle’s brother Harry) is suspicious that someone is passing the information to a foreign power. Was Dupree’s death a tragic accident, or did he see too much, and was silenced as a result? This is the seventh book of the Lady Hardcastle series, and I’ve not read any of the others, but it really didn’t matter. Kinsey deftly inserts all of the background needed to thoroughly enjoy this one—without the dreaded information dump. Emily Hardcastle and Flo Armstrong are wonderful characters that are easy to engage with. The relationship that Kinsey has developed between them is a friendship. And while they are extremely different people, each with their own strengths and weaknesses, they have a trust that is unshakeable. And the dialogue between them extremely witty. Kinsey has interspersed his story with entertaining subplots, and some amusing vignettes of Emily and Flo in their civilian life in the village of Littleton Cotterell. In addition to visits to their local pub, watching games of cricket, and herding cows with a Silver Ghost, there is the village's annual talent show to get ready for—in which Lady Emily just may need that spangled leotard. The mystery was lightweight and the solution comes fairly easily. But still, this was a fun read. I’ll be going back to read the six previous books, and look forward to the next installment.
Talk about a charming and incredibly fun book brimming with clever P. G. Wodehouse-style humour and innovative characters! T. E. Kinsey is a new-to-me author (how?!) and completely won me over with his sparkling humour, spirited characters, intriguing mystery and beautifully quirky story telling. Do not skim a single word as it would be a crime to miss any witticisms. Set in 1911 England, the two main characters, Lady Emily Hardcastle and her lady maid, Florence Armstrong, are approached by Lady Hardcastle's brother to solve a crime. The women use their creativity, brains and bravado to investigate the death of parachutist Dickie Dupree who dies in a test run and discover other things amiss along the way. Nothing daunts them...they are up for anything. They inveigled their way into an aeroplane hangar and my heart at the same time! While the mystery is captivating, what enchants me most is the humour and exchanges and bantering between characters. Love the skill set of Flo...she's a fearless marvel. Lady Hardcastle is a riot! Not only that but the food descriptions are superb. This is an above average cozy mystery...it has that special something that elevates it. Do prioritize this wonderful read if you are crazy about intelligent cozies. Be prepared to get lost in it whilst in a comfy chair...you won't be able to put it down. I have already added it to my Amazon wishlist for Christmas gifts for my reading family. My sincere thank you to Amazon Publishing UK and NetGalley for providing me with an ARC of this delightful book in exchange for an honest review. Much appreciated.
I would like to thank Netgalley and Amazon Publishing UK for an advance copy of The Fatal Flying Affair, the seventh novel to feature Lady Hardcastle and her maid cum assistant Florence Armstrong, set in 1911 Gloucestershire. Due to rising tensions in Europe the government, in the form of Lady Hardcastle’s brother Harry, has recruited her and Flo to the newly created Secret Service and now they have a job. Dickie Dupree died while testing a new top secret parachute at Bristol Aviation and Harry suspects murder because someone is leaking new technology secrets to foreign governments. I thoroughly enjoyed The Fatal Flying Affair which is a light, frothy read with a good plot and plenty of humour. It is told entirely in the first person from Florence Armstrong’s point of view and as she has a slightly cynical take on life, which masks a certain idealism, it makes for a fun read. It seems effortless from the light pastiche of the fiction of the times to the witty dialogue but I would imagine that a lot of hard work goes into this appearance so my thanks to the author for his efforts to amuse me. The plot, on a realism scale, is fairly silly with all sorts of shenanigans like coded messages and burglaries but it’s designed to be entertaining is very well executed. I laughed a lot and got carried away by the exuberance and exhilaration of the read. The ladies are crafting a new life as spies but this is not their first rodeo as they have a long career in international spying and escaping tight situations. This past is not explored in this novel as it has been in previous instalments. A new reader to the series may wonder but their backstory is not essential to this novel. The Fatal Flying Affair is a fun read that I have no hesitation in recommending.
A very enjoyable read indeed. This was the first book I had read in the series. It was a delight getting to know the characters. T E Kinsey did an amazing job painting the characters as well as the English village. The mystery was delightful and kept me guessing to the end.
Another delightful episode in the lives of Lady Hardcastle and her 'tiny servant' Florence Armstrong. I love this series!!! In The Fatal Flying Affair the daring duo step in to assist Lady Hardcastle's brother Harry in a little bit of spying. Harry works at the Secret Service Bureau and has employed them before in sometimes quite dangerous affairs. Although they have supposedly retired from the job this one involves the very new aeroplane industry and, because they are both very eager to fly for the first time, they jump at the possibility. Flying in those days was surely very dangerous. Engines blew up, parachutes split open, planes were landed in cow fields. I am very glad things today have improved so much. Flo shows herself, not for the first time, to be a very competent burglar and and a fearsome opponent in a fight. She also excels in any event which involves taking aim at something. Tiny she may be but she is also scary. Best of all are the comical asides, the plays on words and the questioning of things we take for granted. If an aircraft hangar is described as being the size of two soccer fields, how should we describe its height? There are many very funny suggestions but they settle on it being the height of three elephants. I really hope the author is aiming at this being a very long series!
Lady Hardcastle and her ‘tiny servant’ Flo are back on the case in the latest installment of this series. This time they’re commissioned by Emily’s brother Harry, to help the British government find a security breach at a local airplane manufacturer. The usual cast of characters joins them, and like every book in the series, the witty banter between Lady Hardcastle and Flo is a major highlight. But the honest truth is, I feel that T.E. Kinsey is a great writer ... just not a great mystery writer. The mysteries in this series simply don’t keep me interested. I may or may not read future ones. Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for the opportunity to read this ebook for free in exchange for my unbiased review.
This is another fun adventure for Emily and Flo. The mystery was pretty tight. There were three mysteries in this investigation to be solved and they're all connected. I stayed up late reading half the book and late again to finish it the next night. I never guessed the identity of the spy. Actually, that's not true, I did think about it at first but dismissed it when other stuff was going on. As with previous books, the history of aviation is seamlessly woven into the story. Thankfully Flo is uninterested in engineering and leaves Emily at the mercy of the aviation engineers off page and that keeps the story flowing smoothly. The story stalls a bit in the second half and picks up at the end of the mystery. I really liked the village talent show plot too. I love reading about English villages and their quaint traditions. Like Flo I could never get up there and perform so reading about it is fun. That subplot added more humor to the story. The tone of the story is overall light with the usual witty banter. What I don't like is now Emily and Flo are official and the world is inching ever closer to war (3 years), the story kind of loses some of its charm. Is it still a true cozy mystery if the ladies work for the government? I suppose so but I think it's not as fun as having them be two nosy, intelligent ladies solving mysteries for the local police. The characters always shine bright in this series. I adore eccentric Emily but this time she's just gone plum crazy! Emily is delightful playing an exaggerated version of herself but I think she goes too far with her ruse and gets too into it. BUY an airplane? Just for fun? Whatever for? You couldn't pay me enough money to get in one of those contraptions. Nope. Not until jets are invented! Emily is now a doting aunt to both Harry's new daughter Addie and the Farley-Strouds granddaughter. She's just young at heart enough to be a fun godmother and teach the little girls some really bad new tricks LOL! I can't unsee the image of Emily in a spangled leotard. Thank heavens for Flo's good sense! Not that there's anything wrong with a 40-something woman wearing a spangly leotard but it would be very shocking in 1911, especially for Emily, a Lady and one who would be considered getting past middle-aged. I always enjoy the banter between Emily and Flo and I think there's less of it this time. Their relationship is still special though. Sometimes they tease each other but with the introduction of Harry into the mix, the three of them go round and round teasing each other and it kind of changes the dynamic a little bit. Harry and Emily have a wonderful relationship. I adore how much he loves her and accepts her for who she is. He makes good use of her brain and I think she's smarter than he is and he knows it. Harry is content with his desk job and leaving the field work to Emily and Flo. He's kind to Flo, treating her as another sister, knowing how devoted she is to Emily. Their banter has the added bonus of reminding the reader how the ridiculous surname of Fetherstonehaugh is pronounced. The Farley-Strounds have a minor role in this story. I miss them being a large part of the plot. Lord Farley-Stroud is always a hoot. We finally find out what happened to Clarissa and surprise! she's not as vapid as everyone believed. She's matured a lot and has a meaningful life with a husband, a child and a job! Who knew? She's also older than she seemed at first. As silly as Clarissa seemed, she comes across as more intelligent than her husband Adam. He's nice but simple. He's gullible and naïve yet they trust him to work for an aviation company in France and look in on the Bristol Aviation and Aeronautics Company. He's at least smart enough to know how to fly but I kept worrying he was going to blow Emily and Flo's cover with some innocent remark. He's charming but clueless. The servants are delightful too. Miss Jones sure can cook. Edna doesn't always know what to make of Emily and Flo but she's loyal. Jed, the new gardener, is delightful. He's a recluse who doesn't really like being around people but he's passionate about gardening and landscape design. Apparently patios and patio furniture weren't common in England in 1911 for weather related reasons. We have them everywhere here in New England and our weather is nearly as dreadful. Jenkins, the Farley-Stroud's butler is amusing. Daisy, Flo's best friend in the village, is bold and a bit cheeky. She has a unique sense of humor I don't quite relate to but she is a good friend pushing Flo when Flo needs a little push but being understanding when Flo reveals the truth at last. Inspector Sunderland is on hand again to help. He's out of his jurisdiction so he just comes to make an arrest. I like how he respects Emily and Flo and doesn't fight with them about investigating. Even his wife seems to like them and not feel jealous. It's refreshing not to have police-sleuth drama in a cozy mystery. Mr. Walter "Walt" Sandling, the managing director of Bristol Aeronautics. seems like a nice fellow but he could be playing dumb. Is he really unaware someone is stealing information or is he the one doing the stealing and playing dumb on purpose? (view spoiler) Miss Matthews, the receptionist, has a thankless job. She greets visitors, answers phones, files, grabs lunch/coffee/tea and sometimes doesn't get lunch and hints at sexual harassment. That has to be rough. She was engaged to the pilot who died. Could she be angry enough at the company for everything they make her do to sell secrets? She's a member of the WSPU and feels a kinship with Lady Emily. I don't want her to be a spy. As angry and frustrated as the suffragettes were, they did love their country and wouldn't sell secrets to the enemy. What if Dickie was the one selling secrets and Miss Matthews was an innocent dupe, doing his bidding stealing files because she loved him? Love complicates the mystery too much. Godfrey "Goff" Parfitt, senior engineer, is affable and talkative. Maybe a little too talkative. I don't see him as a spy though. He's so passionate about aviation and he has a good job. There's not much motive there. However, he does like to gamble so perhaps he's selling secrets because he needs money? Rupert Herbert, chief test pilot is a little slimy. Our ladies think he's oily, slick, lecherous and a jingoist. Yuck. Can he be the villain? Gosh I hope so! They need him in Bristol though because he's a brave and daring test pilot. Paul Curtis, junior engineer, is the quiet one. Isn't it always the quiet ones who cause trouble? Again I hope not, being a GOOD quiet person. He's unobtrusive and no one knows much about him. Maybe he's introverted and a private person? Myrtle Matthews doesn't like Mr. Milhouse, the accountant but he's reasonable and fine with Emily and Flo. Flo is a bit disappointed he didn't try to hit on her so she could show off her special skills. She suspects him of wrongdoing but can't prove it officially. Who is lying? Miss Matthews or Mr. Milhouse? Or neither and he did hit on her but knows how to behave around wealthy eccentric widows and their maids? Historical notes: Great British Bake Off fans will smile at the discussion of how Battenberg cake is made. It's been made several times on the British and American versions of the show. One minor quibble: I believe the use of the word flashlight is incorrect for Britain in 1911. Wouldn't torch be more accurate? I still love this series, It is perfect for a bit of light escapism.
This is the seventh in T. E. Kinsey Lady Hardcastle series and is just as engaging and delightful as the previous books in the series. It takes place in the early 1900’s and there is a flavor of the period along with delightful characters who are distinct and fully developed The two main characters, Lady Hardcastle and Flo, her cohort in the secret service who frequently passes herself off as a Lady’s maid are both seasoned employees in His Majesty’s Secret Service. They have incredible skills in the areas of martial arts, weapons, surveillance, breaking and entering, and various other forms of skulduggery. Throughout the novel, they put their skills to use as required. Lady Hardcastle’s brother, who is also their occasional boss in the secret service, asks them to look into a local airplane manufacturer. They are currently doing top secret work to develop a parachute that can be strapped to a pilot’s back and it has come to the secret service’s attention there is a spy at work at the plant trying to gain access to the plans. As Lady Hardcastle and Flo pursue their cover story of Lady Hardcastle’s purchase of an airplane, they pursue the spy using various techniques they’ve developed over the years. Overlaying all this activity is the humor with which the two women approach each other and life in general. It is not unexpected that any reader will have a few occasions of laugh out loud enjoyment as they read the escapades and try to figure out the identity of the spy before these two agents do. This a book, and series, not to be missed. It’s a fun read with just enough twists and turns to make it enjoyable throughout. Each book stands alone, but I would suggest you might want to read the series in order as there are some people and happenings that are referred to from previous novels. Besides, it’s a great series and, if you like character driven mysteries that are on the lighthearted side, you are bound to enjoy this one. My thanks to Amazon Publishing UK and NetGalley for providing me with an advanced digital read for review. The opinions expressed here are entirely my own.
3.75 stars Another adventure for Lady Emily and her "maid", actually her friend and companion Flo. The ladies have an extracurricular gig as spies for His Majesty the King. In the meantime, they reside at a country estate. In this outing Lady Emily's brother Harry, also a funny bugger, asks the ladies to investigate a new aeronautics firm. This is 1911, and England is braced for war and is exploring various weaponry including aircraft. Lady Emily and Flo pose as potential buyers to check out where a leak to foreign agents about the aircraft is coming from. They uncover financial skullduggery and investigate the murder of an employee via a sabotaged top secret parachute. The easy, affectionate and repartee filled relationship between the women is the heart of the book. Harry fits right in. Easy-reading and enjoyable. Thanks to the publisher and to Net Galley for providing me with an ARC in return for my honest review.
The clever, indomitable Emily, Lady Hardcastle and her sassy maid Florence Armstrong thought to retire from their lives as spies; however, Lady Hardcastle’s brother has persuaded them to return to the game. It’s 1911, and the brother, Harry Featherstonehaugh, believes that airplanes are bound to be the next big thing in warfare. Further, he believes that someone is passing along secrets about a new advance called a parachute to a foreign power. So Lady Hardcastle and Florence set out to discover what’s what. I won’t ruin it by revealing any more details. I can say that the seventh novel continues the fun and insight of the previous books in the series. As always, author T.E. Kinsey weaves in a history lesson so expertly that you don’t realize how much you’ve learned until you finished the book. Highly recommended. In the interest of full disclosure, I received this book from NetGalley and Amazon Publishing UK in exchange for an honest review.
I have read a couple of TE Kinsey books and they never fail to entertain, both the story line are intriguing mysteries and the characters are just so likeable. This story takes one to the skies with death and the possibility of war and spies, with a parachute thrown in. The era stuff is quite factual and the story builds on the times - I really enjoy this book.
T. E. Kinsey's latest installment in the Lady Hardcastle mystery series will give readers all the cozy vibes and intriguing layers of mystery fans have come to love over the years. Once again Lady Hardcastle and her trusted sidekick and lady's maid Flo are called upon to solve a puzzling case. Pilot Dickie Dupree tragically died after a failed parachute test at the Bristol Aviation Airfield. Ever the adventurers, Lady Hardcastle and Flo will also experience the exhilaration of flying in an airplane while posing as interested buyers. Was Dupree's death really a tragic accident or is something strange afoot? You can trust that the inimitable Lady Hardcastle and the industrious Flo will achieve cunning feats of detective work to bring this case to a close. The novel delivers all the clever quips and witty banter from a cast of delightful characters both old and new. We also get a peak back into the charming village life in Littleton Cotterell as the entire village is preparing for a talent show amidst the investigations at Bristol Aviation. I am always thrilled to dive back into the cozy and charming shenanigans of Lady Hardcastle and Flo and The Fatal Flying Affair satisfied my longing and left me eager for the next installment.
Oh dear, I so wish I enjoyed this book more. I've heard of this series several times on a podcast I enjoy, He Read, She Read. They both love it and I fully expected to. However, it just wasn't grabby enough for me! It didn't excite me enough to read more than about a third of it. I didn't find either of the main characters to be entertaining, interesting and even the cute types you expect in a cozy mystery. Maybe that was it the cozy aspect. They were too nice, the plot was too everyday and it just didn't do it for me. I'm sure there are numerous readers out there who enjoy this series. My power to them.
OH! This was a delightful author and series to find. Coming into the series with book seven only made me want to go back and discover the delights of the first six books. I don’t think I’ve enjoyed a read this much in a long time. The mystery is realistic, the writing is excellent, the prose is witty, the story is excellently paced, and the characters are all wonderful. How have I missed this series? I, who insists on a bit of romance in my mysteries, didn’t even miss it in this book. Go figure! Just as an FYI to the other miscreants out there who have also missed this series – this book can easily be read as a standalone. References are made to former cases and people, but not in such a way that you feel you are lacking some knowledge. For those of you who are familiar with this series, you might want to skip this paragraph because it is about my take on who Lady Emily Hardcastle and Florence Armstrong are and what they do. My take may not be totally correct because it is mostly from suppositions based on some of the things mentioned in this book. However, I’ll know all once I manage the time to go back and read the earlier stories. Lady Hardcastle has been a widow for something like thirteen years. Florence has worked for Lady Hardcastle for something like seventeen years. Officially, Florence is Emily’s lady’s maid, but that is just to explain Florence’s presence at various functions. Florence is really Emily’s friend and partner in their work for the Crown. Both ladies have spent years working for the Crown and they are exceedingly skilled at what they do – and who – in that time period – would ever suspect a Lady and her maid of being agents for the Crown? They’ve been retired for the last three years and living in Littleton Cotterell in Gloucestershire – near Bristol. Lady H and Flo have enjoyed their retirement and country living, but when Lady H’s brother Harry, who works for the Secret Service, approaches the indomitable pair about returning to active service, they quickly agree. It seems that something just isn’t right at the Bristol Aviation and Aeronautics Company. Harry’s organization has determined that someone is leaking design information to foreign agents, and a gifted young engineer was killed in a testing accident. That accident might not have been an accident. Harry needs Emily and Flo to figure out what is going on at the company, Identify the leaker, and to determine if the young engineer was murdered. With political tensions already making themselves felt in 1911, everyone is fearful of an approaching war. Even those who aren’t ‘in the know’ about what is actually happening are feeling the tensions mounting. Emily and Flo know more than most – especially with Harry filling them in – so they embark on their new investigation determined to find who is betraying England to foreign powers. I absolutely adore the banter between Harry, Emily, and Flo. They are all well-suited and can always make a very tense situation less tense with their humor and wit. I adore how absolutely talented the two ladies are – and how they thoroughly enjoy pulling the wool over people’s eyes. Those people, especially males, tend to discount two females, especially a Lady and her tiny little lady’s maid. They discount Flo and Emily at their own peril! This is a delightful read with a great mystery (or two or three or …) and such delightful characters that you will love them all. I definitely recommend the book. I voluntarily read and reviewed an Advanced Reader Copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
My own mistake but I personally feel like to read this book, you should read the previous work of T E Kinsey! An enjoyable read, from the first moment I loved it, especially getting to read my own home grown Yorkshire accent. Country gardens, parachutes and mystery, I honestly really enjoyed the whole plot and overall couldn’t tell where things would go!
As wonderful and charming as the previous books in this series. Spies, murder, early air flight and some of the best dialogue around.
Lady Hardcastle's brother Harry arrives to ask if she and Flo could do a little work for him. A nearby aeroplane factory was trying to make parachutes, and a man had died when the parachute failed. It turns out that a foreign agent had been caught with details which should have been secret. It turns out the the Farley-Stroud's daughter, Clarissa is married to an aeroplane engineer, Adam, who worked in France, but were now visiting the Grange. When Flo and Lady H go to the Grange for tea, they make arrangements with Adam to visit the factory. Lady H and Flo go to the factory, and claim they might wish to purchase a plane for themselves, and they both definitely want to go for a ride in a plane. Lady H gets her ride, but before the plane gets in the air with Flo, the engine explodes. Around several visits to the factory (one for Flo in the middle of the night), and planning for the annual village show, Flo and Lady H must find the spy in the factory as well as the person responsible for the dead parachutist. This is an excellent addition to the series with the two female crime solvers in an era when women didn't do that. I thank Netgalley for the opportunity to read this book before publication in exchange for an honest review.
Once again Lady Emily Hardcastle and her ‘tiny servant’ Florence Armstrong (whom Harry calls Strongarm) are involved in skulduggery and murder. Emily’s brother Harry has them both involved in the dreadful accident which occurred when the new parachute Bristol Aviation was testing malfunctioned. It was 1911 and parachutes were in their infancy. Was information being leaked to foreign rivals? Was it sabotage that was afoot? With Lady Hardcastle and her lady’s maid Flo undercover at the airfield; the annual village show in full rehearsal mode and the two women taking an unexpected amount of walks around the Common, it would seem they’d be soon able to oust the criminals. But could they? What would be the outcome in this dastardly race? The Fatal Flying Affair is the 7th in the Lady Hardcastle Mysteries by T.E. Kinsey and one again I was entranced. I spent a lot of my reading time laughing out loud – such a delightful series and each episode seems to get better. Flo and Emily are, on the surface, a Lady and her maid quietly living in the country. But underneath – you wouldn’t want to cross them, especially Flo. A delightfully entertaining series of which The Fatal Flying Affair was no different. Highly recommended. With thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for my digital ARC to read in exchange for an honest review.
Flo and Lady Hardcastle are once more pretending to be relaxing in the country but then they get the chance to learn to fly. Well, regular readers will know that Lady Hardcastle will foot the bill for the plane while Flo will become the pilot (which, by the way, she is very excited to do.) Except is the chance to fly the only reason they're checking out the Bristol Aviation and and Aeronautics Company? Of course not. Lady Hardcastle's brother has called on them to come to the aid of their nation once again. It seems that someone is leaking information about the Top Secret Project to the Germans. And, while no one is currently at war, it seems that Germany might be gearing up for it so they need to figure out what is going on and fast. All this while figuring out what they are going to do for the Littleton Village Show. A wonderful addition to the series. You don't HAVE to have read the other books in the series but I highly recommend it. There were three words I had to look up in this book which meant that, not only was it entertaining, I was learning things as well. Four stars This book comes out December 3rd Follows Death Beside the Seaside ARC kindly provided by Amazon Publishing UK and NetGalley Opinions are my own
I am a huge fan of the Lady Hardcastle books by T.E. Kinsey, and this one continues to tell the story of Lady H and Flo in a fun and witty way. I love the repartee between the characters, especially Flo and Lady H. This one is also interesting because it includes hints that are historically relevant, including the development of aeroplanes and the tensions on the continent that foreshadow the coming of WWI. I definitely recommend this series, and this one continues to be a fun and enjoyable read.
I jump at the chance to read these books the minute a new one is released. Light, fun, clever, inspiring, and even slightly educational (in a not-at-all-onerous way). Great characters, though I wish we’d learn a little bit more about them. And in this book they spent a little too much time driving around...mostly back and forth. Still a delightful, quick and cosy read - very tongue-in-cheek without in any way being too cloying. Already looking forward to the next one!
The seventh book in the Lady Hardcastle Mystery, written from the perspective of her "maid" and spy friend Flo Armstrong, was delightful, especially the pair that again solve a mystery and spy story, or rather several mysteries at once, this time around aviation in the year 1911, which was rather dangerous. I liked the fun and wit that was involved in the book, also connected with the other characters, family and friends, members of the village and most of all the servants. I also liked the banter and the playing with words. The mystery constitutes a rather small part in this description of life in a village at a rich house, but it is solved of course, though with an unexpected end. Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
The Fatal Flying Affair is the seventh book in The Lady Hardcastle Mysteries series. I love this series. Lady Emily Hardcastle and Florence are a real hoot. Seventeen years ago, Lady H. hired Flo to be her maid. But, over the years, Flo has become regarded as a companion and fellow spy. They have learned that Lady and her maid’s guise proves beneficial when engaging in spying and questioning people. The banter between the two is both humorous and witty. They remind me of Bertie Wooster and Jeeves. Lady Hardcastle and Flo enjoy their semi-retirement and sitting outdoors when weather permits and their frequent trips into Littleton Cotterell for stop-in at the local pub. They have hired Jed to spruce up their garden and perhaps create a simple kitchen garden for their cook. One day, Harry, Lady H’s brother Harry, who works for the newly formed Secret Service Bureau, arrives and asks for their help. The bureau feels that someone at Bristol Aviation and Aeronautics Company that someone there is passing on secret information to a foreign power about its work on a parachute that pilots would wear. Recently a pilot was testing the parachute when it came apart, and he was killed. Harry suggests that Emily and Flo visit the Bristol plant saying that they are interested in purchasing an aeroplane ask if they might have a tour and talk with staff. After talking with the team and some “nighttime” investigations, they considering the managing director, an engineer, and the beautiful managing director secretary. Lady H does get to go up in the plane, but Flo cannot as the engine explodes just before she is about to go up. But at the ending of the book, she does get to go up for a very harrowing ride. The story is well-written and plotted, and with enough twists and turns, I was kept guessing who the murderer turned out to be until the exciting end. The author provides in his Author Notes the liberties he has taken and the history of flight covered in this story. I am anxiously awaiting the next book in this exciting and informative series.
Many thanks to NetGalley and the publisher, Thomas & Mercer for this Advanced Reader Copy and the opportunity to review “The Fatal Flying Affair.” All opinions are my own. Emily, Lady Hardcastle and Flo find themselves involved in the rumbles of war, in “The Fatal Flying Affair.” At a somewhat secret factory a parachute test goes awry – foreign agents are possibly involved. “Deliberate damage as well as espionage” -- perhaps. All this is coming from Harry , Lady Hardcastle’s brother, who’s with the “new” Secret Service Bureau. Flo and our Lady consider themselves retired from such activities, having done quite enough of it in earlier times, thankyouverymuch. But it's Harry asking, so our intrepid duo agree to go to the factory for a look-see. But it's Harry asking, so our intrepid duo agree to go to the factory for a look-see. So, they begin to investigate, under the guise of buying an aeroplane. And to take flying lessons. Because, why ever not?. A side story involves the Littleton Cotterell – their village -- talent show. Flo’s place in that is practically assured; “Britain’s Got Talent” would be so proud. It would be a hoot to live somewhere like this. Well, minus the bodies, of course. “A gentleman is someone who knows how to play the banjo, but doesn’t.” This, ladies and gentlemen, is what I love about these books, lines like this, from the likes of T.E. Kinsey. Is there any wonder why I wait impatiently for a Lady Hardcastle and Flo book? Takes me away from today’s times, that’s for sure. The banter back and forth between these two highly individualized women, a highlight of the series, is fully in evidence in this, the seventh in the series, set in 1911. And what makes this story “go” is indeed the characters. The Farley-Strouds, the help, the staff at the Dog and Duck, the vicar and his wife, even the butcher. Even single one a gem, true to time and place. And of course, no Lady Hardcastle and Flo book is complete without mention of killer cows. Can’t do without that. Perish the thought. Back to our story. Someone, an insider, is passing along information – is it the boss, one of the engineers, the daring pilot, or maybe the beautiful secretary; ooooh, a femme fatale. Our girls figure out the parachute was deliberately rigged, so that was indeed murder – but brother Harry thinks something else is going to happen. And because this is set pre-war, we get the “what’s coming” speech. We’ve got a few years to go, though. I hope that Emily and Flo get to enjoy their idyllic village for quite a while longer. In the end, the truth is found out, both ladies get their aeroplane rides and a German spy gets caught. All in a day’s work. And Flo saves the day at the talent show. What fun this all is. What fun Mr. Kinsey brings to us, in his books. More, please. An Author’s Note explains the many references used throughout the book. And why he couldn’t use a certain word, not in 1911. Another reason why I love to read historical mysteries.
1911 Littleton Cotterell. Florence Armstrong and Lady Emily Hardcastle, are asked by her brother Harry, of the Secret Service Bureau to investigate the recent events at the British Aviation company and their failed parachute jump. Which resulted in the death of Dickie Dupree. Was it a result of foreign espionage or a tragic accident. Another entertaining and well-written historical mystery with is cast of likeable characters. Another good addition to the series. An ARC was provided by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
I’ve been noticing the Lady Hardcastle series, by TE Kinsey, for quite a while, both because I like historical mysteries, and because I like the covers. Sorry, I do know I’m not supposed to judge a book by its cover, but…there it is! I’ve been afraid, though, that they might be a little too cozy for me, and I’ve never gotten around to reading any. So I was quite happy to be offered an advance reading copy of The Fatal Flying Affair to review. And I surprised myself by loving it. Although starting with the seventh book in a series might not usually be the greatest choice, for me, this book in this series was the probably the right one. I’ve worked in the aviation industry most of my life, and have read a fair amount about the early days of flying, so I loved all the little tidbits about flying. Imagine going 50 mph! Or having to talk through a tube to your co-pilot behind you!! Or having the front and back controls linked on the same set of control wires!!! I was lucky enough when young to get a ride in an early WWI observation plane, quite similar to the planes in the book, so I had a lot of fun recognizing its various features. And when author Kinsey had Lady Hardcastle give a pretty good layman’s explanation of why airplanes take off into the wind (see page 68), I was hooked. It was also a lot of fun to think about the development of parachutes as safety equipment (not a spoiler – it’s quite near the beginning), and to think about the new aviation business opportunity opened up at the end of the book (would be a spoiler, since it’s near the end, so you’ll have to read it for yourself). As it turns out, when I wasn’t busy oohing and aahing over the aviation trivia in the book, I also really enjoyed the plot, which had enough twists and turns to keep me guessing. I liked the characters, and the ways they interacted with each other, and the dry wit many of them exhibited. And, once I had spent half the night reading the book, there was a nice long historical note at the end. My only (minor) beef with the story was the solution of the original death that kicked off the case, which made me kind of sad, but wasn’t enough to spoil the book for me. Let’s see: story – check! characters – check! background – check! historical note – check! So, although I don’t give many books a five-star review, The Fatal Flying Affair gets one. And my thanks to NetGalley/Thomas & Mercer for the review copy. Now, I’m going to go back and start at the beginning of the series, and read them all.
The Fatal Flying Affair is the seventh book in The Lady Hardcastle Series by T. E. Kinsey. In this installment we find Lady Hardcastle and her right hand woman Armstrong being called to duty by King and Country, or better known as Harry, Lady Hardcastle's brother. There is the possibility that shenanigans are going on at Bristol's aeronautics company. Fearing impending war due to Germany's posturing in Morocco, Harry is quite worried about the new parachutes and other plans being leaked. Who better than Lady Emily and faithful Flo to check out the company. These tales are always a fun read. If you are looking for a way to escape from your everyday life, no better way to do it than to spend time with the banter and fun in the Lady Hardcastle books. Thank you #NetGalley for allowing me to give my honest review on #TheFatalFlyingAffair. It was most enjoyable!
I read over half of the book and I it just seemed to be missing something. I truly believe that others will enjoy this book but I need a little more pizazz. The storyline itself is great, I just wasn’t enjoying the execution. Again, I truly believe others will enjoy the book, it’s just not my cup of tea. DNF Thank you to #TheFatalFlyingAffair and #NetGalley for the book
Thank you to Netgalley for an advance copy of this book in exchange for an honest review! I love Lady Hardcastle and Flo, and was excited to receive this book. However, after having read six of their other books, and the short story (#1.5), I guess I have wearied of their schtick. I could not get into this book. One thing that annoys me is that the characters always allude to the very exciting pasts of Lady H and F, who were/are spies for the British government. Previously, they traveled abroad and had to escape, under cover, across China, where F picked up her martial arts and meditating skills. It seems to me that there should be at least one book covering this story. In this book, Lady H and F have been enlisted by her brother to look into the leaking of research materials and the mysterious death of a test pilot. They manage to uncover even more! Unfortunately, there was nothing particularly charming or funny or interesting about this story for me to really comment on. It was not totally boring, but not un-put-downable either
Utterly charming and engaging read that will keep a reader entertained until the very end. Entertaining characters and a well plotted story made for an enjoyable couple of hours.
If you're a fan of cozy mysteries, or you think you might be, T E Kinsey's series about Lady Hardcastle and her multi-talented ladies maid Armstrong is a great place to land. This, the seventh book, could be read without reading any of the earlier books, and will surely be loved by series completists. In this installment, I loved learning about early airplane and parachute development--the industrial setting of the mystery made for a nice contrast with the bucolic country town where Lady Hardcastle and Armstrong live. Thank you to the publisher and NetGallery for an ARC.
Thank you to NetGalley and Amazon Publishing UK for kindly providing me with a digital copy of this book for review. This is a pretty big statement but I think this is one of my most favourite cozy mystery series. I absolutely love the characterisation and they get better developed with each further book. These books have me chuckling and intrigued at the same time, and each new plot is unique and engaging. I found this plot line involving the emerging aviation industry in 1911 particularly interesting. I will definitely be carrying on with the series and highly recommended it.
T.E. Kinsey continues his excellent historical Lady Hardcastle cozies. Emily Hardcastle and her maid and sidekick in the spy business Florence Armstrong are taken away from a sleepy village summer by Emily's brother Harry who is a bureaucrat in the Secret Service Bureau in Whitehall Harry is concerned by that a failed parachute killed an aviator working with a new airplane that is of interest to the government. The spy duo infiltrate the aviation company with the excuse of interest in buying a plane. They uncover lots of criminal activity and keep digging. On the side they are preparing for the village summer fete. Lots of local colour and highjinks. Great read.
The Fatal Flying Affair is a fun semi-historical mystery. The Protagonists, Lady Hardcastle and her ladies maid Florence Armstrong are "retired" from service to the Crown. But when Lady Harcastle's brother, Harry, asks them to help with a case, they jump right in. Airplanes are still a bit of a novelty for the average person. Research and testing on parachute construction is underway when tragedy - or is it murder?- strikes. Someone is leaking top secret documents from the very facility where the tragedy has occurred. Our heroines go to work to sort it all out, or will they? The story was fun and easy to dive into. I was interested enough to look up some of the history of parachutes before I finished the story. There is a nice explanation and some historical clarification by the author after the story comes to an end.
Along with the mystery in the story is the humor which is so much makes it so much fun to read. The year is 1911 and Lady Hardcastle and Florence Armstrong are helping Harry, Lady H's brother once again. There has been a death at the aeroplane factory near where they live. In testing a parachute with a person after a number of tests with dummies the man dies. There seems to be a leak of information going out too. The ladies are in looking to purchase a plane gets them in and the opportunity to look around and see what they can find out.
Not my favourite of this series, but still a fun instalment in the series. This sees the ladies investigating flying and dealing with a village show. A nice way to pass a few hours.
I love this series, and I LOVED this book! Lady Hardcastle and Flo are back at work for the government investigating an "accident" at an airplane factory. The story is fast paced, with enough red herrings to make it interesting. the dialog is snappy and intelligent. (I can now use "hypocoristic" in a sentence and sound really smart.). And the characters are delightful and entertaining. In addition to a great mystery, there's a wonderful sense of humor in this series that I really enjoy. I found myself laughing out loud in many parts. I also liked seeing Flo develop as more than a lady's maid/international butt-kicker and into more of a part of the community around her. All in all, I can't recommend this book or this series enough. Thank you NetGalley for a free copy of this e-book in exchange for an unbiased review.
I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the Lady Hardcastle series by T. E. Kinsey over the last few years, and the seventh installment, “The Fatal Flying Affair,” is another jewel in the crown. Tensions are mounting in Europe in the years preceding WWI. Lady Hardcastle and her lady’s maid-cum-burglar-cum-markswoman Flo Armstrong are sent to investigate the death of a pilot at an aviation facility. A damaged parachute, exploding plane engines, and missing money are all in a day’s (well, week’s) work for our detectives. Not only do they have to sift through clues to find possible spies and lies, but the annual village show is in peril. Can Hardcastle and Armstrong save the day and foil the plot? Kinsey’s style is a nice blend of madcap and sensibility. Lady Hardcastle and Flo have a strong relationship that has lasted through perils and peacetime, and their very different personalities make them a strong detective team. There are some laugh-out-loud lines, and it’s always nice to see Flo put her circus skills to work. This feel-good Edwardian cozy series is highly recommended. Thanks to NetGalley for providing a reading copy in return for an honest review.
Lady Emily Hardcastle and her lady's maid, Florence Armstrong are on the case again. They have been requested to find out who is leaking secrets to the enemy at an aircraft company and who deliberately sabatoged a parachute killing the man wearing it. I love this series. They are light weight -- nothing serious, but they are such fun to read. I love the bantering between the two main characters and their friendship and fondness for each other. I hope there will be more in this series because I have enjoyed the ones I read. Thank you for allowing me access to the Advanced Reading Copy.
A quick and easy read that I found myself picking up after a long day to unwind. The characters are beautifully written and I came to love them within the first few pages and was rooting for them all the way to the end. At times I wanted to stop reading because I just wanted the experience to go on for longer. Thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
I thoroughly enjoyed the ensemble of characters, the banter amongst them and the setting for the story. It's just an utterly charming cozy, mystery. The relationship between Lady Hardcastle and her lady's maid is essential to their ability to go under cover and investigate on behalf of the government without drawing attention to the issues. The context of the evolution of the role of the aeroplane (and parachutes) made for a very interesting backdrop to the story. Some of the mystery storyline just a little too far fetched for me, yet it was an enjoyable, fun read. With thanks to Amazon Publishing UK, #Netgalley and the author for my advance reader copy in return for an honest review.
There are few things more satisfying than a great series with every book as good, if not better than the last. Throw in a splash of humour and a mystery set in 1900s England, the whole thing just gets better. The icing on the cake as always is the most appropriate narration I have stumbled on. Elizabeth Knowelden yet again makes the experience all the more fun. The author continues to indulge his sense of humour in our leading ladies. Lady Hardcastle and Flo have now settled into a pattern. People around them have come to realise and accept them for what they are and shower them with love as well. Harry has a prominent role in this and has his own verbal sparring thrown in, both with Flo and his sister. The dialogues are the highlight of this series, although in this case, the case itself was not far behind. It begins rather innocuously with a task given to the ladies to infiltrate the local aeroplane factory. Now, as with all their cases, their investigation does not stay limited to what they think they have to uncover. All the previous characters are strewn during the narrative, but few make an actual appearance. That said, I still recommend reading it in order because only then the personalities and their eccentricities can be absorbed in the best manner. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Rating: 5 out of 5. I received an ARC thanks to NetGalley and the publishers, but the review is entirely based on my own listening experience of an audiobook.
When a pilot plunges to his death from testing a suddenly faulty parachute, Emily and Flo get their orders to investigate the Bristol Aeroplane plant for espionage and a murderer. I love these Edwardian Era cozy Historical Mysteries that combine fun and gig with sleuthing. The Fatal Flying Affair is the seventh of the Lady Hardcastle mysteries that can be taken standalone or, at their best, in order. Lady Emily Hardcastle and her ladies’ maid, Florence have enjoyed a fine summer in their country village cottage, plotting garden plans with their irascible gardener and looking forward to a village talent festival that Flo is rather reluctant to participate in. Then, Lady Cardcastle’s brother in the secret service drops in with a need for their detecting talents so off they go into the world of aviation and pre-WWI espionage. I’ve always enjoyed the jovial, badinaging pair of Emily and Flo who are definitely over the top and eccentric. Emily comes across as quirky, even ditzy, but she is really a keen observer and the brains of the detecting duo. While Florence, who is the narrator of the books, is the even-keeled one with the martial arts and weapons knowledge. They blur the lines in mistress-servant because the pair have been together a long time and through a colorful career in far off places as British spies. Their cottage and the village was to be their peaceful retirement, but they can’t help poking into local mysteries and murders. So with their skill set, they come across as a dotty lady and her maid servant and perfect investigators. As to the mystery, it is set in the fascinating pioneer period of aviation and I enjoy getting a good dose of what it was like in the early years without slogging into the engineering behind it all. The suffragettes from an earlier mystery are back as are several of the usual characters, but the mystery is in a Bristol factory and is being touted as an accident so Inspector Sunderland, the Farley-Strouds and others are not as prevalent. The mystery is, in fact, three mysteries that seem unrelated until they are. There were plenty of suspects and motives. It got exciting and I did get to enjoy seeing the intrepid Flo in action and Lady Hardcastle do her voila. It got slow for a bit just before the reveals and finale, but it was still a fun detecting adventure. All in all, I had a good time as I usually do with these light, amusing historical murder mysteries that I can recommend to those who like historical cozies.
It is August 1911, and Lady Hardcastle, her "tiny servant" Flo Armstrong are enjoying an idyllic summer in the village of Littleton Cotterell. Having tea in the garden, trips to the village pub, and planning for the village show make up their days. However, things are heating up in Europe, especially in the field of aviation. The British government feels that aviation will play a large part in any coming conflict. So when a tragic accident occurs at nearby Bristol Aviation, what could be more natural than for the two former spies to be called back to duty? Lady Hardcastle's spymaster brother, Harry, has also discovered that someone at Bristol has been selling secrets to foreign powers. Feisty Flo has always wanted to fly, so it is decided that she pose as Lady Hardcastle's maid and a prospective student pilot. By the story's end, the two intrepid ladies find more skullduggery than even they imagined. The Lady Hardcastle mysteries are delightful, and The Fatal Flying Affair is no exception. I especially enjoy the interplay between Lady Hardcastle and Flo, who are the best of friends and perfectly complement each other. This may be an England that never really was, but it is great fun to visit. Thanks to NetGalley and Thomas & Mercer for an advance digital copy. The opinions are my own.
The 7th book in the series already. Really love the amateur-sleuth cosy mysteries with Lady Hardcastle and her sidekick Florence. I never get bored of this quite unusual relationship with its humorous dialogues or the picturesque setting in the english countryside in the early 20th century.
Another humorous helping from the pen of T E Kinsey. Lady Emily and her faithful maid embark on another adventure all the while embracing village life with familiar characters we have come to love. The death of a man while engaged in testing a parachute is the mystery which engages these two indomitable ladies, we see more of Harry who works for the government and is involved in secret, shady things! This is a jolly romp with a touch of menace all told with wit and sharp observations. Thanks to the publishers and Netgalley for an ARC of this book.
Thoroughly enjoyed it! And the cover art is delightful! Well thought out story, a nice winter read. I really love stories based during these times of history. And the main character makes you feel like she really brings you along in her story.
← Health, wellness and ancient healing are old subjects Fatal Flying Affair Finds Folly and Fun Fantastic Posted on January 24, 2021 by michellelovatosbookreviews, world's first book color commentator The latest Lady Hardcastle book: The Fatal Flying Affair takes the newly re-minted British Intelligence service woman into the air as she uses her quick-thinking, wit, and style to solve the mystery of how a local pilot fell from the sky to his untimely death. This Lady Hardcastle installment features Emily, also known as Lady H’s, her handmaiden Florence, Flo, Armstrong, and her brother Henry, who alerts Emily to the problem at Bristol Aviation and Aeronautics Company, the aeroplane factory responsible for pilot Dickie Dupree’s demise. This plotline heats up when Lady H begins to suspect the fatal flying affair that killed Dupree is related to an undercover spy operation whose agent is leaking top-secret information to foreign rivals. The race is on. Lady H is herself, of course, a woman who thinks, and acts, larger than herself. Thankfully, however, she has Flo, whose reasonable thinking keeps Lady H firmly on the ground. The pair, who spent more than 15 years together already, are full of humor, banter, and ultimately, high adventure. This lighthearted and fun historic cozy is no disappointment to Hardcastle fans and offers readers another reason to keep clamoring for the next book in this series. One of the best things about this story is its’ author’s ability to write the history of aviation into the text, both educating and entertaining its readers simultaneously. The Fatal Flying Affair features three plotlines that all wrap up into a nice little bow at this story’s conclusion. This is an excellent book for those cozy mystery fans who have not yet dipped their reading glasses into historical cozy fiction. The Fatal Flying Affair can be read as a stand-alone novel. The Fatal Flying Affair: A Hardcastle Mystery by T.E. Tinsley carries multiple plots featuring its familiar cast of characters and incorporates a few new friends to the series as well. It answers open questions from past books and introduces other unforgettable, charming, and dull-witted characters to the series. My only question here is simple: When is the next one publishing? email@example.com BoutiqueBooks@hotmail.com Happy are those who respect the Lord and obey him. You will enjoy what you work for, and you will be blessed with good things. Psalm 128: 1-2
I love this author and this series so much. Every entry in this series has been so delightful and fun and thoroughly entertaining. I had been saving this one to read like a kid waiting to play with a favorite Christmas gift, but after suffering through two painful DNFs, I rewarded myself by reading another Emily & Flo mystery. This is one of the few authors that can make me laugh out loud while I read, and there are a couple times in every book (including this one) where I think, I want to write this line down and try to use it on someone in my life. The humor is just so witty and dry and clever. As far as the plot goes... I think if you're still reading these books after there being 7 in the series, the plot becomes a little insignificant. You're mostly reading it to enjoy the great writing and to revisit old friends, not necessarily to be stumped by the mystery (which I still found a little guessable). I can't wait for the next one!!! Many thanks to the publisher for providing an ARC via netgalley in exchange for my honest review.
Hardcastle and Flo were at it once again in this high-flying cozy mystery. Once again, in my view, Flo was the star, with her doing all the hard work and Hardcastle the easy part, filtering the clues. Together they make an unstoppable and effective team. This has been an engaging and intriguing package.
The Hardcastle mysteries are one of those series that I instantly gravitate to when a new one is released. It has a variety of twists and turns but is thoroughly entertaining. The characters are a wide array of completely relatable townsfolk, an eccentric lady and her ladies maid. You can't help but be completely absorbed into these books. **Synopsis/Spoilers** In this latest addition to the series Flo and Lady Hardcastle team up to investigate the death of a young engineer and solve the mystery of who is selling the company secrets. There's a bit of action, adventure, and even some torn skirts in the mix. I do have to admit that some of the scenes felt unneeded (such as the town talent show) but it does help with the building of the characters outside of the duo.
I love Lady Hardcastle and Flo so much, and this book had everything I love about their mysteries - plenty of twists and turns, delightful banter that made me laugh out loud, glimpses of life with the people of Littleton Cotterell, and opportunities for Flo to show what she’s made of. The whole series is wonderful, and this is one of my favorites. Many thanks to NetGalley for sending me an advanced ebook, but I also purchased a copy on audio because narrator Elizabeth Knowelden is beyond fantastic and adds so much to the reading experience.
Thank you Netgalley. Another delightful instalment in the Lady Hardcastle series. I enjoyed it very much and am already waiting for the next book in the series. The mix of humor and adventure is perfect for an anytime read.
I absolutely love this series and this addition was delicious. I enjoyed following along with Lady Hardcastle and her tiny servant Flo on another investigation. I love the wit and play on words in the story,and the characters are delightful. Many thanks to Amazon Publishing UK and to NetGalley for providing me with a galley in exchange for my honest opinion.
Lady Emily Hardcastle and her small servant Florence Armstrong (nicknamed "Strongarm" by Harry) is once again embroiled in skulduggery and murder. Emily's brother Harry claims that they were both involved in the tragic crash that happened when the new parachute that Bristol Aviation was developing failed. In 1911, parachutes were only in their infancy. Was intelligence leaked to international competitors? Is there sabotage going on? With Lady Hardcastle and her lady's maid Flo working undercover at the airfield, the annual village show in full swing, and the two ladies enjoying an unusual number of walks across the Common, it seems they'll be able to apprehend the offenders fast. Can they, though, do it? What will the result of this heinous race be? I adore Harry, Emily, and Flo's back-and-forth. They're all well-suited, and with their wit and humor, they will still lighten up a stressful situation. I admire how brilliant the two ladies are, and how much they love deceiving others. Those individuals, especially males, are prone to dismissing two females, particularly a Lady and her diminutive lady's maid. At their peril, they dismiss Flo and Emily! The Fatal Flying Affair is the seventh in T.E. Kinsey's Lady Hardcastle Mysteries, and it enthralled me. I spent a lot of my reading time laughing out loud – it's such a fun series, and each episode only gets better and better. On the surface, Flo and Emily seem to be a Lady and her maid happily live in the countryside. But underneath, particularly Flo, you wouldn't want to cross them. The Fatal Flying Affair was another installment of a delightfully enjoyable collection.
This book is the 7th in the Lady Hardcastle series and i wish i had read the earlier 6 before reading this one. It is a delightful book set in the 1900s. A female James Bond, i loved both Lady Hardcvastle as well as her cohort - Flo. The story is them looking into a possible spy at a local airplane manufacturer who is developing a new kind of parachute. It is a fun filled mystery joy ride. the perfect kinds to read when you are feeling low!! i am going to dive into the full series soon!
Another engrossing and entertaining cozy mystery, a good addition to this series. I had fun and the solid mystery kept me guessing. Recommended. Many thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for this ARC, all opinions are mine
Absolutely Love Lady Hardcastle and Flo! The easy and mischievous banter between themselves and their friends really helps these books to just romp along. Superbly written for their time and place in history, and with intriguing mysteries to boot! Highly recommended.