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Messenger of Truth (Maisie Dobbs, #4)
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Messenger of Truth (Maisie Dobbs #4)

3.98  ·  Rating Details ·  13,094 Ratings  ·  1,012 Reviews
London, 1931. On the night before the opening of his new and much-anticipated exhibition at a famed Mayfair gallery, Nicholas Bassington-Hope falls to his death. The police declare the fall an accident, but the dead man's twin sister, Georgina, isn't convinced. When the authorities refuse to conduct further investigations and close the case, Georgina - a journalist and inf ...more
Hardcover, 322 pages
Published August 22nd 2006 by Henry Holt and Co. (first published January 1st 2006)
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Mar 24, 2016 Phrynne rated it liked it
Three stars for a book which contained some things I liked but sadly some that I did not care for. I liked the setting and the details about life in post war England. I quite enjoyed the mystery although the ending was a little weak. I liked Maisie as a main character but she would be so much better if she did not endlessly evaluate her life. And I could wish that the author had never decided to bring in the psychic aspect at all. I am sure Maisie's talent for sleuthing and her intelligence and ...more
Feb 14, 2011 Hannah rated it it was ok
Shelves: mysteries, 2011-reads
Rating Clarification: 2.5 stars

This series seems to be getting weaker and weaker, or more likely I'm getting more and more fed up with Maisie Dobbs: "New Age Geru Detective Extroidinaire".

#4 in the series finds Maisie on the hunt to determine whether her client's artist brother fell from some scaffolding, or was pushed to his death on the eve of his big art exhibition.

Along the way, Maisie discovers an appreciation for "ART", and Winspear tries to breath some color and emotion into her characte
Carol Storm
Jul 22, 2014 Carol Storm rated it it was ok
WARNING: You are about to enter a twisted, angry review where every innocent question hides a deadly and maleficent SPOILER!!!!


What kind of mystery novel spends two hundred pages trying to tell you nothing but how goofed up the murder victim's relatives are?

What kind of detective spends all her time holding hands with twits like the dead man's sister, then nabs the "killer" without even trying on the last page?

What kind of idiot gets into a shoving match with his father while standing high a
Sep 23, 2007 Sharon rated it liked it
Recommends it for: anglophiles, Sally Lockhart fans
This book, the fourth in the series, is a failure as a mystery. Maisie Dobbs is asked to investigate a death that might be murder, and eventually she uncovers not only the truth but also a smuggling ring. Unfortunately, although the reader can follow the trail of the smugglers, the resolution of the central death seems to depend on Maisie's psychic abilities--abilities that the reader doesn't have. The resolution makes sense, but it seems to come out of the blue.

There are, however, a number of r
May 09, 2012 Peggy rated it it was amazing
I'm a Maisie Dobbs fan. Her character is developing over the series. In this book, she tests her independence on several fronts: professionally, by not calling on her mentor, Maurice Blanche, domestically, by living alone, and romantically, by separating from her suitor. She is investigating the death of an artist, meanwhile observing much about the society around her (1931, London), including veterans, the brutality of war, the rise of fascism, class differences, poverty, family relationships, ...more
Sep 06, 2007 Nicole rated it liked it
This was my latest experience with Maisie Dobbs, the post-WWI British heroine created by Jacqueline Winspear. This fourth book in the series was good, but somehow I didn't enjoy it as much as the third three- don't know why. I highly recommend the whole series though!

I was excited to read in the p.s. section of the third book, "Messenger of Truth", that the series will be adapted for British television and that Winspear envisioned Anthony Hopkins and Maggie Smith as playing roles, although I don
The Lit Bitch
3.5 stars
So after reading the third Maisie book, I was kind of on a ‘Great War’ mysteries kick so I decided to continue on with the next book in the series, Messenger of Truth.

I was impressed with how the third book developed and the next book sounded equally as intriguing that I just couldn’t help myself.

As I have said before in other reviews of this series, I felt less than connected to Maisie on occasion, but as the series goes on I feel like I’m able to connect to her a little more with each
Jun 21, 2014 Marianne rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Messenger of Truth is the fourth book in the Maisie Dobbs series by British-born American author, Jacqueline Winspear. When the death of controversial artist Nicholas Bassington-Hope, from a fall whilst setting up his latest exhibition, is ruled as accidental, his twin sister Georgina is unconvinced. Georgina, an outspoken journalist, seeks out the help of Maisie Dobbs, psychologist and investigator. In the course of her investigations, Maisie meets the bohemian Bassington-Hope family, Nick’s fe ...more
Charlene Intriago
Jan 21, 2015 Charlene Intriago rated it really liked it
I like these Maisie Dobb books. They are somewhat light, but thoroughly intriguing mysteries, and there is always the historical element that Jacqueline Winspear adds to the tale. This time it's 1931 and an artist dies while setting up his latest exhibit. The authorities think it's an accident. The dead man's twin sister thinks it might be something else and contacts Maisie to look into it. Turns out, there is something more to it.

Maisie has some uncanny abilities to see more than what is on th
Oh, my goodness! Holy shit, Batman! I am blown away by this series and Winspear's writing. This is so very much more than just a "mystery" or a venture into "historical fiction" is some of the most thought-provoking introspective fiction I have read. Especially this, the fourth installment in the series. I cried. Not bawling, but I cried. Winspear is absolutely one of the very best authors at making me FEEL as the characters FEEL. No wonder I stayed up much of last night reading this. I hav ...more
Ruthie Jones
Feb 24, 2015 Ruthie Jones rated it it was amazing
Shelves: library-book
The Maisie Dobbs series is more than just a collection of stories about a female sleuth tumbling headlong into private investigation. Jacqueline Winspear takes Maisie's intriguing cases and weaves in historical events and social issues in England in the years after WWI. Maisie and her sidekick Billy Beale are an interesting duo. Their investigative dance is quite graceful, especially given their opposite personalities and lifestyles. They are a good pair!

In Messenger of Truth, Winspear once agai
Apr 22, 2011 Linette rated it it was ok
The story was good and the details excellent, as usual for this series. However, the pacing was just too 'the same' all the way through on this book - thoughtful, careful, considered. Needed more action, less reflection. Not quite as good as the earlier books, still a wonderful series and I will continue by reading the next one.
Barbara Mitchell
Jul 07, 2011 Barbara Mitchell rated it it was amazing
For months now I've been reading other bloggers' reviews of Jacqueline Winspear's Maisie Dobbs mysteries. Everyone likes them. So, I looked in the box of books given to me a while ago and found Messenger of Truth. This isn't the first in the series, but I don't usually have the opportunity to read a series in order so I plunged right in.

This story is set in London in 1931. The setting is of a changed city after World War I where some women have taken on new types of jobs but the poor are still a
Nov 12, 2015 Cliff rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I have read other Maisie Dobbs books and enjoyed them. This much less so. It was hard going for a start. I began to find I was not picking and felt the book was solely directed at a transatlantic readership. Why else should an English writer spell 'neighbor' thus? At one point the protagonist goes through the 'turnstile' at a London Underground station. We don't have such, but they are a feature of the New York subway. Then again, she hasn't checked her facts. She says that the railway carriage ...more
Rick Fisher
Jan 30, 2014 Rick Fisher rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, period
"Messenger of Truth" is a another wonderful mystery by Jacqueline Winspear. This series continues to impress and draw me in. Maisie Dobbs is an incredible character. And, she becomes more endearing with each new case we get to indulge in with her.
There are a few moments when things move at a slower pace. As with each previous novel, these are segments when our heroine spends time lamenting about her past, or her musing about her abilities or even broadly speculating about her case. And even t
Shirley Schwartz
Dec 12, 2013 Shirley Schwartz rated it it was amazing
Shelves: my-5-star-reads
This is the fourth book in the Maisie Dobbs series, and it's a winner. The setting is 1931 in London. This is a time in the UK when there is a lot of poverty and hopelessness. The Great War is over but for the few that did return jobs are hard to come by. A lot of walking wounded are out and about and everyone that participated in some way during the war is trying to start life anew with the great sadness of the war carried in all their hearts. Unemployment is high. Disease is running rampant. M ...more
Dec 12, 2012 Rusty rated it really liked it
It's 1931 in London when an emerging artist, Nicholas Bassington-Hope, dies in a fall from the scaffolding from which he is hanging paintings for his latest and most talked about show. Is it an accident or murder? Nicholas' twin sister, Georgina, believes that it is murder and hires Maisie Dobbs to investigate and find out.

In the process Maisie discovers much about herself. Her determination to be a self-supporting and independent woman in a time of change leads her to evaluate her romantic life
Jul 12, 2011 Ariel rated it liked it
I have been reading along all of the books in this series fairly quickly until I got to this one. It is so sad I had to put it aside for awhile before finishing it. The problem for me in this book is that I am starting to not like Maisie very much. Would it have killed her to go check on Billy's daughter when she found out she was sick. She was after all a nurse and she knew that he didn't have the money to take her to the doctor. She could have at least given him the money. He has put himself o ...more
BJ Rose
Closer to 3.5* - this is the first Maisie Dobbs book that hasn't been a 4* for me. Everything just seemed to drag along for quite a while, altho it did definitely redeem itself in the last quarter. Lots of introspection (maybe too much?) and much thinking about endings and beginnings - makes me wonder what the next book will bring!
Mar 27, 2016 Linda rated it really liked it
I really enjoy Maisie Dobbs. I like how she works and how she is almost seemingly not even investigating just gathering information and then it all ties together. It's also interesting watching her grow as a person in each book and how her personal life keeps evolving.
Kathy Davie
Jan 10, 2013 Kathy Davie rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mystery, history
Fourth in the Maisie Dobbs historical mystery set in December 1930 London and revolving around a woman who incorporates a meditative psychology with her detective work.

My Take
In this story, we explore the lives of artists, painters, a writer, and a musician. What makes them tick, the places they work. What spurs them on. As for the coast at Dungeness, I don't think it has anything to do with all the red herrings in this.

Oh, god, this was so incredibly sad. Such talent ended. A family devastated
Feb 26, 2017 Mark rated it really liked it
Four stars is maybe a bit generous, but this is probably the best Maisie Dobbs mystery I've read so far.
Laura Edwards
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Feb 04, 2014 Jessica rated it liked it
The fourth installment in the Maisie Dobbs series finds Maisie investigating the circumstances surrounding the death of a well-known artist after being hired by the artist's twin sister. Her investigation leads her to discover both bonds and strife within the given family, while also putting her onto the scent of a possible smuggling ring.

Overall the story was enjoyable, but it was also my least favorite in the series so far. I have read numerous reviews now with people saying they don't think M
Nancy Butts
Apr 06, 2015 Nancy Butts rated it liked it
After Book 3, I’d about given up on this series. But since I had a two-volume set, I read Book 4 anyway—and I’m glad I did. The series is starting to hit its stride in this volume, as the author allows Maisie to thaw out a bit and become more human. As always, however, I find myself far more involved with the secondary characters of each book than with Maisie herself. In this book, it is her Cockney factotum Billy and his family that engrossed me and brought me to tears; and I was intrigued with ...more
Not my favorite of the series so far in regards to the mystery but what I did love was the art angle this book took. This time, Maisie's case revolves around Nick Bassington-Hope, an artist who has died under what may be suspicious circumstances. As Maisie is investigating the death, she has to understand Nick's art, a lot of which deals with the war. It just so happens that I focused my Art History studies in college around this time period because I find it so fascinating how major events in o ...more
Apr 06, 2011 Sheila rated it really liked it
I started in the middle of the series since my local library did not have the first few available. I was very happy to find that I was able to get into the story without having read the beginning books. Although I am going to go back and read them.
Maisie Dobbs is an independent woman in England and is not following in the footsteps of other women her age. The experiences that have led her to her current occupation as an investigator are alluded to as well as her humble background. She went to a
Jan 26, 2011 Donna rated it liked it
Masie is hired by the sister of an artist whose death may not have been the accident it seemed. As she investigates her client's unconventional family, she again confronts the troubles facing England in the aftermath of the war. The story takes her through scenes of privilege and poverty, all while she's trying to come to grips with the direction of her own life.

In a first for this series, I felt like I was ahead of Masie's investigation. The murderer and motive jumped right out of me. In the ot
Jun 29, 2011 Nancy rated it it was ok
I am a great fan of Winspear's Maisie Dobbs books but this particular one just didn't appeal to me.

Maisie has a budding reputation as a psychologist and investigator with uncanny sensitivity and intuition. Her intuition was totally intact in this book but she could have used a training session on interpersonal relationships. She blew off her lover with little explanation (and less regret) and she was barely civil to her benefactress, and then her mentor, when they attempted to "connect" with her
Alexis Villery
Mar 11, 2012 Alexis Villery rated it liked it
Set in London after the Great War, Maise Dobbs has quite a mystery on her hands. Nicholas Bassingon-Hope, upcoming artist, has fallen to his death. His sister Georgina feels in her heart that her twin brother has been murdered and when the police do not believe her, she turns to Maisie. Without any clues to point to murder, Maisie takes the case, determined to bring peace to the Bassington-Hope family one way or the other.

Before I write anything else, I have to state how much I LOVE this cover.
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Jacqueline Winspear was born and raised in the county of Kent, England. Following higher education at the University of London’s Institute of Education, Jacqueline worked in academic publishing, in higher education and in marketing communications in the UK.

She emigrated to the United States in 1990, and while working in business and as a personal / professional coach, Jacqueline embarked upon a li
More about Jacqueline Winspear...

Other Books in the Series

Maisie Dobbs (1 - 10 of 13 books)
  • Maisie Dobbs (Maisie Dobbs, #1)
  • Birds of a Feather (Maisie Dobbs, #2)
  • Pardonable Lies (Maisie Dobbs, #3)
  • An Incomplete Revenge (Maisie Dobbs, #5)
  • Among the Mad (Maisie Dobbs, #6)
  • The Mapping of Love and Death (Maisie Dobbs, #7)
  • A Lesson in Secrets (Maisie Dobbs, #8)
  • Elegy for Eddie (Maisie Dobbs, #9)
  • Leaving Everything Most Loved (Maisie Dobbs, #10)
  • A Dangerous Place (Maisie Dobbs, #11)

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“She closed her eyes, silently continuing the pleas that she be given words that might soothe, words that would begin the healing of bereaved parents. She had seen, when she entered the kitchen, the chasm of sorrow that divided man and wife already, each deep in their own wretched suffering, neither knowing what to say to the other. She knew that to begin to talk about what had happened was a key to acknowledging their loss, and that such acceptance would in turn be a means to enduring the days and months ahead.” 7 likes
“I've come to the conclusion that liking a person we are required to have dealings with is not of paramount importance. But respect is crucial, on both sides, as is tolerance, and a depth of understanding of those influences that sculpt a character.” 3 likes
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