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Goodnight Sweet Prince (Lord Francis Powerscourt #1)

3.56 of 5 stars 3.56  ·  rating details  ·  316 ratings  ·  51 reviews
The debut of aristocrat-investigator Lord Francis Powerscourt, who takes on investigations too delicate for the police.

Prince Eddy is a notorious wastrel. But when he is found in his bedroom at Sandringham with his throat cut, his father, King George V, decides that the crime must be concealed. The prince is said to have died of influenza. Lord Francis Powerscourt is secr

Paperback, 320 pages
Published January 1st 2007 (first published December 18th 2001)
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GOODNIGHT SWEET PRINCE (Professional Investigator-UK-1892) – VG
Dickinson, David – 1st in series
Constable, 2002- UK Hardcover
Queen Victoria is on the throne when Irish investigator Lord Francis Powerscourt is informed by his friend, Lord Rosebery, that someone is sending blackmail letters to the Prince of Wales, the future Edward VII. The case takes a much darker turn when Edward’s son, Albert, who is second in line for the throne after his father, is found brutally murdered in his bed. While it...more
Nancy Oakes
Queen Victoria is on the throne. The Prince of Wales is being blackmailed via threats sent to him in notes with letters cut from two different newspapers. Lord Francis Powerscourt, investigator extraordinaire, is called in to solve the case. He and his small circle decide that since the only thing the Prince of Wales has on him that could possibly be of use to a blackmailer is already widely known, the blackmailer is targeting the behavior of his son, Prince Eddy. So they set to work looking for...more
2.5 stars

I didn't know what to make of this book in all honesty. I felt that the pace of the story kept changing dramatically. The lead character seemed to zip around Europe with ease which was impossible to believe as travel during Victorian times would have been slow and laborious. There were parts of the book I thought were ok and at other times the story dragged.
Christine Blachford
Wasn't sure what to make of this one to start with, it took quite a long time to get going, and spent a considerable amount of time setting the groundwork for the characters. It wouldn't really have been a problem except the nature of the book and the style of the writing meant it felt like we were being kept at arm's length the entire time.

Once the action picked up, however, the book hit its stride and I really started to enjoy it. A good mystery, an interesting investigation, and the character...more
The idea is neat - Prince Albert Victor was murdered by a vengeful husband, with his death covered up as part of an influenza epidemic - but the execution isn't really there. Anachronistic language, abrupt POV changes (sometimes in the middle of a paragraph!), clumsy exposition, and a sprawling cast of characters all make the book harder to follow than it should be.

There are bright spots: the Lady Lucy character is very well drawn and the Venice sequence is captivating, but I'm not moved to cont...more
BOTTOM LINE: #1 Lord Francis Powerscourt, investigator, 1892 England and Italy; genteel PI, historical. Royal cover-ups (murders and salacious doings) and other deadly dealings.

would have rated this "four-and-one-half" stars - it was soooo good! - but can't figure out how to do so, and as a first novel I won't give five stars "on principle"... - the author has to be able to improve, kwim?

“What If” - Prince Eddy, Queen Victoria’s disreputable eldest grandson (and second in line for the throne) d...more
Chantelle (aka the Blogmonstar)
There was indeed controversy surrounding Queen Victoria's grandson, Prince Albert Victor, Duke of Clarence and Avondale (otherwise known as Prince Eddy). In particular surrounding his sexuality, intellect and sanity. According to the history books he died of influenza, but what if he didn't? THat's what David Dickinson's compelling historical mystery is all about.

The story follows Lord Francis Powerscourt and his intriguing investigation into the death of Prince Eddy, said to be a very naughty...more
Simon Mcleish
Originally published on my blog here in May 2007.

When one things of the British royal family in the later nineteenth century, the immediate image that comes to mind is that of the perpetually mourning Queen Victoria; perhaps secondly there are the mistresses of the Prince of Wales, later Edward VII. Less well known is the eldest son of the Prince of Wales, because he never actually succeeded to the throne, dying of influenza in 1892. The career of < href="
First sentence: "Come, Powerscourt, come."

It is January of 1892 and the eldest son of the Prince of Wales has been found dead in his bed. The tale that has come down through history is that he died from a bad bout of influenza, but what if instead his death was caused by a murder that was covered up by his royal father? This is the story David Dickinson tells through the eyes of the Irish investigator Lord Francis Powerscourt. Lord Powerscourt is hired by the Prince of Wales to investigate the d...more
John Lee
This book was a recommendation for me on the Goodreads website. It is the first that I have taken up and is a promising start.
On the front cover of the book is a quote "A cracking yarn, beguilingly real from start to finish" I am not sure about the second half but it was certainly a cracking yarn. I thoroughly enjoyed the story and the style of writing which took the reader from gentle humour to deadly severe in the turn of a page with a touch Lord Peter Wimsey in there too.
As I didnt know much...more
Prince Eddy has been murdered and Francis has been asked to find the murderer while covering up the murder.

The dialogue was wooden. The mystery was poorly paced. The writing was somewhat scattered.
If you like Charles Finch novels, you will like this one! Both authors have Victorian Lords as the main character. They both have accomplices who assist in unraveling the mysteries! And there is a fair lady in the background.
Goodnight Sweet Pprince involves the death of Prince Albert (Victoria's Prince of Wales)'s ner do well son, Prince Eddy. Since Eddy succumbed to rather a brutal slitting of the throat, Albert fears it was done as an act of vengeance and wants to keep the manner of death secr...more
Jocelyn Harvey
This is a new series for me, but into its ninth book. This one, the first, introduces Lord Francis Powerscourt, an Anglo-Irish aristocrat living in England, a sometime investigator for the government, as well as his buddies, family, and love interest. The characters grabbed my attention - very well-drawn and intriguing. The plot creaks a little at the start but half way through takes off and is very exciting. Dickinson draws on his knowledge of Victorian England, art, and the classics and, in a...more
A Victorian thriller with a royal background. The Prince of Wales' eldest son is found murdered, why and who by?

Lord Powerscourt, an Irishman and friend of the Prime Minister and Lord Rosebery, is called in to investigate. He does so and finds himslef in a web of intrigue, so much so that other murders take place and then his own life, and those of his confederates, is at risk.

However, he is clever enough to outwit the hidden, and then unknown enemy, and eventually unravel the whole mystery with...more
This started out as a two-star plodder and ended up a bit above a three-star. Dickinson clearly is setting up a series, and takes the first quarter of the book to build a very thick foundation-the historical setting, the characters, real and ficticious, and their interactions. He does everything but draw a web map of their relationships with bubble notes about their shared lives previous to the book. However, when he gets that out of the way, the mystery picks up and so does the pace. It ended w...more
The history books will tell you that Prince Eddie, son of the Prince of Wales and grandson of Queen Victoria, died of influenza. But what if...the dissolute prince was really murdered, and the family covered up his death because they were afraid of the scandal that would come out if the crime were openly investigated? And what if Irish peer Lord Francis Powerscourt, who should be concentrating on his courtship of Lady Lucy, has to investigate the murder without letting anyone not in the secret k...more
Sep 28, 2014 Alicia rated it 1 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: No one in particular-- see review
Recommended to Alicia by: No one--came up in a genre search, decided to try
ISBN: 9-7867-0945-6 ©2002
4 volumes/28 chapters/314pp

Review to come
Very enjoyable historical mystery, full of believable Victorian scandal.
Sep 27, 2014 Susan added it
Loved this book…another favorite to add to my list of authors…
this was a kindle reduced price special and i was hooked! now i want to buy the rest of the 7 book series, but they aren't on sale. the hero is a victorian-era investigator who is asked to check into a blackmail scheme involving the promiscuous prince of wales, and then the prince's oldest son is found murdered--this is a novel, NOT truly history. the romance between the hero and the heroine is kind of an afterthought. but it was truly intersting to see how, UNLIKE today, the rich and powerful c...more
This is the first in a series.
The Prince of Wales, Edward, has a debauched son Eddy. Eddy is found with his throat slit at Sandringham. Lord Francis Powerscourt is asked to investigate whilst no one is to know about the murder as the royal family hush it up and declare Eddy died of influenza.

I found this a quick, well-paced and in places, humourous, story and just when I thought all was done and dusted there was another twist.

A fair amount of aristocratic drawing room gossip and matchmaking goin...more
Besides the murder, nothing happened in this book at all. This was like a cozy mystery except if a cozy mystery had British restraint amped up to 11. I kept reading thinking that something would have to happen, it was a book after all, and things happen eventually in books. Not so, my good sirs, this book was a less interesting, and fictional version of a true crime book. Anyway, just absolutely underwhelmed with this book. I doubt I would give the next once a chance after this borefest.
Takes place in the Victorian era, so there is lots of sexual repression. Unless, of course, you're a member of the British royalty. The only one NOT having sex, it appears, was the Queen herself. Anyway, Lord Powerscourt is a very strong protagonist. I liked his style. It is a smallish glimpse into the seedy behind-the-scenes of the royals at this time. Makes you wonder, what else could be a figment of their imaginations? Oh, and the mystery is pretty good, too. LOL Enjoy!
Possibly just a badly edited book, but I had trouble with the transitions between scenes. At one point, there's a list of (something) being given, and suddenly you're back with the previous scene to finish it, and without warning, back into the list to finish that. Too many of those happened and I was tossed out of the book.

The main character is very much like a less-giddy Lord Peter in some ways, but comes across as fairly superficial.
A little bit of fake history here - that Victoria's grandson, Prince Eddy, was murdered rather than died of influenza - and first in a series of turn-of-the-century (19th/20th) British mysteries. Great period detail, but pretty poor development of the characters ; quite a good mystery, but an at times awkward development of the plot-line. Enjoyable, but definitely a mixed bag.
I really enjoyed this. Surprised ratings so low. Like-able hero (& appealing supporting cast), intelligent history-revising mystery, & polymath author. Maybe slowness-in-the-middle made people like it less than they could have. I guess my 5 stars is as much for future hopes if the series as for the book.
I just couldn't accept the premise that not one of the many people involved in the suppression of the murder would let out the secret. The author knows his stuff when it comes to history and literature and it was an easy read. Perhaps the others in the series will be more believable.
Mark Macatee
I'm not sure. This book has an absolutely fascinating premise and the details are extraordinary, but it goes on and on and on. I never thought I was going to finish. I'm sure that I will try the next one, but if it goes on the same way I may not have the stamina to finish.
Yorky Caz
omg at 20% of the way in I said this book was boring - at 100% im giving it 5*. Stick with it great writing great characters just takes quite a while to build the back story etc. Very much looking forwards to the next one
For the first 1/2 to 2/3 of this book, I had the opposite issue from "being unable to put the book down." I had to force myself through to the last half where it finally started to pick up and ended up being a decent mystery.
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David Dickinson was born in Dublin. After receiving a first class honours degree in Classics from Cambridge he joined the BBC where he became editor of Newsnight and Panorama as well as being series editor on Monarchy, a three part programme on the current state and future prospects of the British royal family. David now lives in Barnes, South West London.

Librarian Note: There is more than one aut...more
More about David Dickinson...
Death and the Jubilee (Lord Francis Powerscourt, #2) Death of a Chancellor (Lord Francis Powerscourt, #4) Death of an Old Master (Lord Francis Powerscourt, #3) Death on the Nevskii Prospekt (Lord Francis Powerscourt, #6) Death Called to the Bar (Lord Francis Powerscourt, #5)

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