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The Rival Queens (Countess Ashby de La Zouche, # 2)
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The Rival Queens (Countess Ashby De La Zouche #2)

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3.66  ·  Rating details ·  154 Ratings  ·  14 Reviews

London 1700. The intrepid and impecunious heroines Countess Ashby de la Zouche and her maidservant, Alpiew, are scavenging for scandal for that scurrilous rag, the London Trumpet. With the bailiffs, as ever, in hot pursuit, the Countess and Alpiew escape to a philosophical lecture at the York Building's concert hall. But their dull evening is confounded when one player sta

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Published March 3rd 2017 by Fidelis Morgan (first published December 31st 2001)
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Marguerite Kaye
Jun 18, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a reread for me, and I enjoyed it every bit as much second time around, and I think even more because I recently re-read Unnatural Fire.

What is not to like about Countess Ashby de la Zouche and her maid Alpiew? They are haphazard sleuths, who fall into a solution rather than deduce it. They are a very odd and endearing pair, and in a bawdy, vicious world, surprisingly naïve. The live in a house that is falling apart, as is the Countess herself, but they live by their own rules and thou
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Rachel Stephenson
set in 17C London . Murder mystery , quite entertaining but very light . Some interesting historical details .
Emma Rose Ribbons
The gentle cover really makes me laugh because the book is anything but gentle. So! This is the second installment in the Countess Ashby de la Zouche mysteries series. We're in the company of our old friends the Countess and her former maid Alpiew for another adventure in Restoration England.
First things first - this book wasn't as good as Unnatural Fire, the first book of the series, perhaps because the first book is funnier and the whole introduction makes it so we have to get accustomed to a
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Phair
Definitely not as good as #1 but then the "getting to know you" stage is always more interesting I feel. This one was a bit harder to follow- more characters and a more complex plot. Some plot pieces seemed to come out of left field. A pretty good sense of the period but somehow less vivid than in the first. I enjoy the humor in these especially the ironic aside where Ashby disses Pepys for his silly diary that will surely come to nothing- what could he possibly write about?
JL Smither
An interesting light read. When I picked this up, I didn't realize it was a mystery or that it was the second in a series--yes, I just judged the book by its cover. But it kept me entertained and even guessing a bit over whodunit. It takes place in London in 1699, and the author made a point of dropping in little trivia about the time period to add to the atmosphere. Good for a plane or before-bed reading.
Lacey
Jan 04, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: books-i-own
The characters of Alpiew and the Countess were much consistent. The thing I love best about this series is the age of the characters. Alpiew is in her forties, the Countess is in her sixties and Godrey is just old. It's good to see that the thirst for adventure doesn't end after twenty and that hardships occur to everyday people, even in books.
Cathy
Aug 22, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: abandoned
As the stars say, 80 pages in and it was OK, just not what I wanted to read at the moment, so abandoned, for now at least. Hadn't read the previous one (it is the 2nd in a series) but that wasn't a problem.
Randi
Aug 31, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I found this to be an enjoyable read about two unexpected detective types - an eccentric old countess and her maid. The timeframe was fun to read about as well - London at the start of the 1700s.
Milynda Guinn moore
Like all of the Countess Ashby books this was wonderful.
Sue
Dec 27, 2016 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: aarf-yuck-ugh
No queens here. Too many repetitions of the word Countess {on every single page} and others; poor writing. Trifling dialogue. ugh.
Jdlewis57
enjoyed setting/atmosphere of Eiizabethan London, but mysteries aren't really my thing.
Cece
A little choppy-if it were a movie the pace of scene switches would produce whiplash-but fun.
Delphine
Sep 12, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Uncannily funny. Good historical novel with a lot of humour. A must-read.
Michael Rhode
I just couldn't get into this historical mystery, even though it was recommended by my wife. Just one of those things. The historical color was excellent (and disgusting).
Barry
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Actor, writer, director and historian, Fidelis Morgan is the author of a series of mystery novels featuring the Countess Ashby dela Zouche and a cast of outrageous characters. The books have been described as ‘A 17th century Armistead Maupin’, ‘Flashman for Girls’ ‘A bawdy PG Wodehouse’ and ‘Cagney and Lacey in Corsets.’
She has published many influential non-fiction works, mainly about the sevent
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Other Books in the Series

Countess Ashby De La Zouche (4 books)
  • Unnatural Fire (Countess Ashby de La Zouche, #1)
  • The Ambitious Stepmother (Countess Ashby De La Zouche #3)
  • Fortune's Slave (Countess Ashby De La Zouche #4)