Thursday, April 24, 2014

Blog Tour/Review: Leaving Everything Most Loved by Jacqueline Winspear

Leaving Everything Most Loved, by Jacqueline Winspear
2013, 336p, Historical Mystery
My Rating=5 Stars
Source: Received copy from publisher and TLC Book Tours for an honest review

The death of an Indian immigrant leads Maisie Dobbs into a dangerous yet fascinating world and takes her in an unexpected direction in this latest chapter of the New York Times bestselling series "that seems to get better with each entry" (Wall Street Journal).

London, 1933. Two months after the body of an Indian woman named Usha Pramal is found in the brackish water of a South London canal, her brother, newly arrived in England, turns to Maisie Dobbs to find out the truth about her death. Not only has Scotland Yard made no arrests, evidence indicates that they failed to conduct a full and thorough investigation.

Before her death, Usha was staying at an ayah's hostel alongside Indian women whose British employers turned them out into the street--penniless and far from their homeland--when their services were no longer needed. As Maisie soon learns, Usha was different from the hostel's other lodgers. But with this discovery comes new danger: another Indian woman who had information about Usha is found murdered before she can talk to Maisie.

As Maisie is pulled deeper into an unfamiliar yet captivating subculture, her investigation becomes clouded by the unfinished business of a previous case as well as a growing desire to see more of the world, following in the footsteps of her former mentor, Maurice Blanche. And there is her lover, James Compton, who gives her an ultimatum she cannot ignore.

Bringing a crucial chapter in the life and times of Maisie Dobbs to a close, Leaving Everything Most Loved marks a pivotal moment in this remarkable series.

I love the time period and location of this novel. London, 1933. An Indian woman named Usha Pramal is found dead in a canal and Scotland Yard hasn't done too much to solve her murder. Detective Inspector Caldwell of Scotland Yard has brought Usha's brother, Mr. Pramal, to meet with the psychologist and investigator Maisie Dobbs to see if she can find the murderer.

As Maisie learns more about Usha, she has lots of questions to answer before she can figure out what happened to her. Usha was loved by many people, so who would want to kill her? Usha also had some secrets and when Maisie sets up an appointment with another Indian woman who was close to her, she ends up dead before they can meet. This is a great story with twists and turns and the reveal was one I wasn't expecting.

This is the first book I've read in this series (it's #10) and I think it's a great stand alone novel! There are references to other cases and characters but I didn't feel confused. I think enough back story was given to give an overview but not too much detail that it bogged the story down. If you've read the other novels, there are story lines that continue to evolve and if this is the first book you read, you won't feel like you've missed out on everything. I also liked that the title applied to both story lines. Maisie makes a major decision towards the end and there is some reminiscing of earlier times so a long time reader of the series will love that.

If you like historical mysteries, this is a book and series that will appeal to you! I would love to go back and read some of the earlier novels at some point in time. I would also love to check out more of Jacqueline Winspear's books!

Jacqueline Winspear is the author of the New York Times bestsellers Leaving Everything Most LovedElegy for EddieA Lesson in SecretsThe Mapping of Love and Death, Among the Mad, and An Incomplete Revenge, as well as four other Maisie Dobbs novels. Originally from the United Kingdom, she now lives in California.

Find out more about Jacqueline at her website,, and find her on Facebook.


Unknown said...

I love the old style of the cover! This sounds like something I would love...#10 in the series though..hehehe! I am glad it can be read as a stand alone. I like it when a book series can go on and on, but doesn't HAVE to be read in order! Great review. Thanks for sharing :)

Anonymous said...

I'm glad to see that this can be read as a stand-alone novel - I've only read the first few Maisie books, so there's a lot for me to catch up on!

Thanks for being a part of the tour.

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