Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

The Lady Grace Mysteries: Conspiracy

The Lady Grace Mysteries: Conspiracy

Patricia Finney
Historical Fiction  Series
For ages 10 and up
Random House UK, 2004   ISBN: 978-0385606462

Lady Grace Cavendish is going to accompany her Queen, Elizabeth I, on her annual summer progress. There is an air of excitement about the court for the progress will be staying at the home of the Earl of Leicester, a man who always provides the very best entertainments. The court is also looking forward to seeing the Queen meet her new suitor, a young Swedish prince, who will be staying at the Earl's house to court the queen during her stay there.

Soon after the queen arrives things start to go wrong. Accidents begin to occur which endanger the Queen's life. In each of the three incidents the Queen escapes without any harm but in one case an innocent bystander, a child, is injured. Lady Grace, being of a curious nature, discovers that each of the accidents were not in fact accidents at all - they were all attacks on the queen.

With the queen's support and encouragement Grace sets about trying to find out who is at the bottom of this very dangerous state of affairs. Can the Queen's much trusted advisor, Sir William Cecil be involved or are the Swedish gentlemen to blame?

Patricia Finney has created a gripping, often funny, and altogether highly entertaining book in this third Lady Grace mystery. Grace seems to grow before our very eyes, her talents and faults developing throughout the story. We can laugh at Grace's inability to flirt, and delight in her obvious skills as an investigator. Surely with this "Lady Pursuivant" on the case the culprit will be found. Full of fascinating details about life in the Elizabethan court which will delight and appall readers, this book is highly addictive.