BIRDS OF A FEATHER by Jacqueline Winspear

Birds of a featherThis is the second in the Maisie Dobbs mystery series, set in Britain in the aftermath of the First World War.  The first is Maisie Dobbs.

In this book,  Maisie still has limping Billie Beale as her assistant,  and a new client, wealthy Joseph Waite, grocer to the stars hahaha.  Na.  He grew up poor, lost his father as a kid, helped raise his siblings, and hauled himself up in the world to now own a string of high end butcher/grocery stores.  He lost his beloved son in the war, and is trying to keep his 32-year-old daughter under tight rein to keep her, to his mind, safe.

One morning at breakfast, after seeing something in the newspaper, the daughter gasps, runs out of the room and runs away from home.  Yeah, she is pretty childish still.  Her father  hires Maisie to find the daughter and bring her home.

As Maisie is investigating where the daughter might have gone, she visits an old school friend of the daughter, to discover her dead in her sitting room! Murdered!   Egad.    Then, she hears of another old school friend of the daughter murdered in the same way.  And a third who apparently committed suicide.  This is beginning to look like a bit more than an annoyed daughter chaffing at her restraints.  What the heck is going on?

Meanwhile, her dad, who is working as a horse trainer on the manor house farm of Maisie’s mentor, Lady Raven, has a serious accident and suffers some head trauma.  And if that isn’t enough,  her assistant Billie is starting to show some uncharacteristic mood changes, and a bit of investigation on Maisie’s part suggests that he may be on some hard drugs trying to alleviate the ever-present pain in his leg from his war wound.

What with the possibilities offered by DI Stratton,  and now a new man  in the form of Dr.  Dane out in the country,  Maisie has some romantic possibilities if she can get over her emotional hurdles from the war.   As we learn

There is a fine line between remembrance and reminder, and how a constanat reminer could drive a person to the edge of sanity.

Oh.  And she gets her hair bobbed.  You go, girl!

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