Title: A Dangerous Place
Author: Jacqueline Winspear
Narrator: Orlagh Cassidy
Genre: Mystery; Historical Fiction
Audio: 9.7 hours
Publisher: Harper Audio
Source: Public Library
Book Rating: 4/5
Audio Rating: 5/5
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.
This book starts much differently than any other Maisie Dobbs book. There is a big time jump and we are given a quick timeline in correspondence form. I felt a little cheated that I didn’t get to experience all of these things, but I understand why it was done this way.
I enjoyed the change in scenery. This story takes place in Gibraltar (and Spain). But I missed some of the familiar people and I am hoping that the next book takes us back to England and familiar characters.
One thing I love about Maisie Dobbs novels is how much I learn about that time and place. This book was no exception. I even found myself doing extra research on the side.
I almost wish I weren’t caught up on this series. I hate waiting for the next one.
Orlagh Cassidy is excellent as always. I wouldn’t think about reading Maisie Dobbs any other way.
I agree: Felt cheated, a little disoriented, about the beginning. But I understand why she did it that way, it was a smart decision.