Today's post is for my mystery-loving friends. I know that many of you have already seen me rave about this series on Instagram this year, but I'm here to tell you that I just love the Lady Hardcastle Mysteries by T. E. Kinsey and implore you to add them to your library.
This mystery series begins with A Quiet Life in the Country, which introduces us to Lady Emily Hardcastle and her lady's maid, Florence Armstrong. Lady Hardcastle is a wealthy widow, who moves to Gloucestershire with Flo to enjoy a quiet life in the rural countryside. Rather than the stuffy, boring types that you might expect of a Lady and her maid in 1908, the two women come with an unusual past. After the murder of Lady Hardcastle's husband, she was recruited by The Crown to work as a spy, and she and Flo led a rather exciting life in various places around the globe. When they come to settle in the country, they expect that they've left all that excitement behind. That is, until a man is seemingly poisoned and the two are recruited by the local constable to help solve the mystery of his death. The series continues with In the Market for Murder and Death Around the Bend and all three books contain both these lovable quirky characters and interesting mysteries to be solved.
I first experienced this series as an audiobook, and fell in love with it almost instantly. I believe I have Elizabeth Knowelden to thank for that, as her voice combined with the cheeky banter of our two protagonists had me smiling for the duration of these books. More than once, I decided I needed to go for a walk so that I could listen to just a few more chapters before turning in for the night.
I think the mark of a good book is when you consider the characters to be like friends, and I am completely serious when I say that the personalities of Kinsey's characters are so charming, bold, and unique that I may just have to re-listen or re-read these books while I await the next in the series -- no word on that yet, but I'm feeling impatient.
I own these books in all three forms: hard copies, e-books, and audiobooks and can tell you that I wholeheartedly recommend them in whatever form you prefer most. However, if you are an audiobook listener, you won't regret listening to the audible versions. You can find them here.
Have you read any of these mysteries?
Comment below and tell me about your reading or listening experience!