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Bright Young Dead

(Mitford Murders #2)

3.52  ·  Rating details ·  2,581 ratings  ·  281 reviews
Set amid the legendary Mitford household, Bright Young Dead is the second in the thrilling, Golden Age-style Mitford Murders series by Jessica Fellowes, author of the New York Times bestselling Downton Abbey books.

Meet the Bright Young Things, the rabble-rousing hedonists of the 1920s whose treasure hunts were a media obsession. One such game takes place at the 18th birthd
Paperback, 388 pages
Published October 1st 2018 by Hachette Australia (first published 2018)
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This is the second in The Mitford Murders series by Jessica Fellowes, but I found it worked perfectly fine as a standalone. Set in the 1920s, it captures the era with the heady dance clubs, flapper girls, jazz and the hedonistic behaviour of the young society aristocrats, out to have a good time, experimenting with drugs, determined to break out of the staid social circles and rules of their parents generation. They are the 'Bright Young Things', making a huge splash in the media with their famo ...more
It was 1925 when Pamela Mitford had her 18th birthday party, with the ending culminating in a treasure hunt, organized by Adrian Curtis. Arrogant, a young man who used sarcasm as a cruel weapon, his sister Charlotte was the only person who admired him. Others thought he was handsome; were drawn to him – but they didn’t like him. It was when, in the early hours of the morning, after the adults had retired to bed and Louisa Cannon, chaperone and maid to Pamela and her sisters, let Dulcie, maid and ...more
I almost tossed this one aside after the first 40 pages. I just had a really hard time getting into this with all the characters thrown into the story at once-it was a jumble for a little bit until I could sort them out. I felt similes were overused to illustrate the scene or emotions-it got so that they were distracting from the story since I was noticing them so much. As for the actual story, prior to reading this book, I had no idea the Mitfords were a real family (as were Alice Diamond and h ...more
Alice Lippart
Very enjoyable and entertaining.
Nov 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A very good whodunnit. Jessica Fellowes has created a murder mystery centring on the Mitford family and their home, and some of Nancy’s friends who are mixed up in London’s 1920s drug scene, illegal drinking clubs and prostitution. Alice Diamond, ‘Queen of the Forty Thieves’, seems an unlikely character but she was a real person who ran a gang of female shoplifters. The murder itself is fictitious but many of the characters and the historical detail are not.

Fellowes has clearly done her research
Shawn Bird
Mar 16, 2019 rated it it was ok
I've heard that British public quickly can identify an American pretender. And here we have one- a book that is set in 1920's England, but is so obviously written by an American who doesn't care about accurate representation, that it is painful, even to me and I'm not British.

1st clue: turkey at Christmas. No. No. No. That'd be goose.
2nd clue: the family drives a Chrysler. No. That'd be a Bentley, a Rolls Royce, Morgan, McLaren, but highly unlikely to be a Chrysler.
3rd clue, and so fundamental t
Johanna Svensson
Jun 27, 2019 rated it it was ok
I was really tempted to give this book just one star, but since I managed to finish it I suppose I should be a bit more generous. But I didn't care for the book at all, I thought it was a bit of a mess with interwoven storylines that didn't make a lot of sense, and the conclusion was confusing. I quite liked the first book, but I didn't think the real Mitfords really made a difference to the storyline, a theme which continues with this sequal. They really could be any fictional family, since the ...more
Jun 11, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Jessica Fellowes is becoming my new favorite writer. In Bright Young Dead, she recreates the world of the aristocratic rich in the British Roaring 1920's. If you've never heard of the Mitford sisters, Google them. They were ahead of their time. They feature prominently in this mystery of a birthday party treasure hunt gone deadly.

Think Downton Abbey meets Agatha Christie. That's Fellowes style.

The heroine is a teen-age Mitford debutante who solves mysteries with her maid, set against the backdr
Janet Brown
Oct 11, 2018 rated it it was ok
I enjoyed the first in this series, The Mitford Murders, far more that I expected. If you're expecting an impeccably accurate account of either the Mitford family or of life generally at the turn of the 1920s, you'll be disappointed. But I went into it expecting it to be silly and inaccurate, and instead found it a greatly entertaining page-turner (but also, yes, inaccurate and somewhat silly, if with a properly tense and surprising dénouement).

Because of this, I had high hopes for Bright Young
Elaine Tomasso
Oct 10, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I would like to thank Netgalley and Little, Brown Book Group UK for an advance copy of Bright Young Dead, the second novel to feature Louisa Cannon, nursery maid to the Mitford family.

It is 1925 and the second eldest Mitford sister, Pamela, is preparing for her 18th birthday party at the family home. Her elder sister, Nancy, has invited some of her friends to join them, the so called Bright Young Things whose hedonistic lifestyle appals their elders. To make events more interesting they have arr
Kris - My Novelesque Life

For some reason this book was not on NetGalley, so I borrowed this one from the eLibrary. I enjoyed this one more than the first book in the series. I felt at this point we know the characters' backgrounds so it was more focused on the story and mystery. At Pamela Mitford's 18th birthday party, one of the Young Bright Things, Aiden is murdered. And the maid, Dulcie is named a suspect. Louisa and her gang must look into the case if they want to free the innocent maid. The novel use
Jun 09, 2019 rated it did not like it
Now, I adore the 1920s - borderline OBSESSED - check.
I find the Mitfords an extremely interesting set of sisters - check.
I like a bit of murder mystery too -check.
So, when I discovered this book I snatched it up in an instant. Unfortunately (and I feel somewhat ashamed to say it) I couldn't even make my way to the half-way mark... I just couldn't give myself a good enough reason to go back to it; the idea felt almost like a chore! It was missing something I can't quite put my finger on.
Feb 18, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
It’s an okay read. I didn’t enjoy this as much as the first of the series. At the end there is the suggestion of a change in Louisa’s life; so that could mean an interesting aspect in subsequent books.
Dec 18, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"As the glamour of the Bright Young Things crashes into the world of the Mitford sisters, their maid Louisa Cannon finds herself at the scene of a gripping murder mystery."

I've read and reviewed books #1 and #3 for NetGalley in this series and I am SOOO hoping there will be more..Louisa Cannon and Guy Sullivan are endearing and entertaining. The mystery was a good one with historical events that happened although not to the named characters in the book Sgt. Sullivan with Louisa's assistance ( an
Oct 28, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: arcs, 2018
An enjoyable read, weaving in the lives of the Mitfords and their eldest daughter Nancy's social set, and that of Louisa, their maid (and her policeman friend Guy). I have always loved the Mitfords, particularly since I read Nancy's The Pursuit of Love, so this series really appealed to me. It's also written by Jessica Fellowes who has written several books about Downton Abbey too.

Whilst this is the 2nd in the series, it can easily be read standalone although I think some of the colour and backs
Oct 21, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is book number two in the series, but my first read. I found it for $1.00 at Dollar Tree. Sometimes you can find a treasure there if you look. I enjoyed this mystery set in the 1920s, (flapper days) in London. I must admit it was a bit of rough going for the first few chapters since there were at least 20 characters introduced pretty much all at once. The main character, Louisa, is a nursery maid at Asthall Manor, a real-life place at this time. It is the home of the Mitford family, who rea ...more
Oct 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I adore this series and have read all three over the last few weeks and now I've caught up! I'm not sure how I'm going to manage without my regular fix of Louisa, Gus and the Mitford girls, each of whom is both fascinating and appalling (in different ways). I know Asthall and the church where some of this book is set and so that certainly adds something extra to its appeal for me but, regardless of that, I find these books completely immersive and enthralling. Set in the mid 1920s, this book cap ...more
Jan 13, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Bright Young Dead is the 2nd installment in Jessica Fellowes' Mitford Murders series, following the adventures of working-class Louisa Cannon as her life intersects with the real-life Mitford Sisters. I think I like this book even more than its predecessor. The action takes place at the height of the Roaring Twenties and the Mitford sisters, led by the irrepressible Nancy, are beginning to make waves as members of London's "bright young things" hedonistic social set.

Fellowes' still blends fact a
Mariah Bowman
Oct 29, 2020 rated it really liked it
Again, I didnt see the actual culprit until they were revealed. While slower paced, I found the story fun. It's so intriguing to me to see the way things worked at a different time in history. The Mitford family came back into play, and did Louisa and Guy. With a new set of issues, and another murder, Louisa is again put in the middle and finds herself wanting to help solve the crime.
The writing was fun, and I think Guy quickly became a favorite character, while Nancy's charms diminished for me
Oct 03, 2020 rated it really liked it
This sequel didn’t disappoint, it gave me exactly what it gave me in the first book. An exiting murder case set in a historical background with very likeable characters. My only problem is that I find the writing style a bit too flowery or awkward in places (that can also be the translator, I read it in Dutch).
Donna Mcnab
Sep 11, 2020 rated it liked it
It is interesting to follow the characters that appeared in the first book as they get a little older. All the mores of the time come through very well. Also, it is a little unusual and interesting to read about the characters, who actually were based on real people of the time.
Mar 31, 2019 rated it liked it
Wonderful light mystery with a downright stunning cover
Not wonderful, but good enough that book #3 in the series is on reserve at my library.
The Library Lady
Sep 08, 2020 rated it it was ok
Adequate entertainment, but I continue to be extremely bothered by the use of the real Mitford family, with 100% made up dialogue.
Victoria Ray
May 01, 2020 rated it really liked it
On plus side: well-written story with absolutely amazing descriptions and historical details. I have to say, I liked the atmosphere created by the author of this book - very believable.
On the minus side: I didn't care about Adrian. I had no desire to know who killed him. Same goes for Dulcie and other crowd. Instead, I liked Guy, Marie and L. Cannon. I don't know why, but I think because they were more human (some way or another). I could relate to them.
Overall, interesting crime story (histor
Dawn Michelle
This one was not nearly as good as the first one and IMO was about 100 pages too long. It was still a decent story and I still like Louisa very much - she is a good character.
Jan 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
Loved it
Carolyn Crocker
Jul 08, 2019 rated it it was ok
This serviceable Agatha Christie-esque mystery (#2)
rings the usual changes on class, the Twenties, and country-house murder, with the addition of working class sleuths Louisa, the maid/chaperone and her love-interest Sgt. Guy Sullivan. Using the Downton Abbey vibe and the mythologized Mitford family is shorthand for shabby aristocracy and outre ideas that almost any reader can fill in.

“Guy was grinning as if he’d just opened his Christmas stocking and found it contained real gold coins instead
Jan 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mysteries
The Mitford sisters, along with their chaperone Louisa, are at it again! When Adrian Curtis is killed at Pamela's birthday dance and an innocent (well, sort of, lol!) maid is accused of the crime, Louisa sets out to discover the identity of the real killer. Along the way she crosses paths with the famous Alice Diamond and her Forty Thieves, as well as Sergeant Guy Sullivan who we met in The Mitford Murders. A nice mystery, fast paced, with some real history thrown in for color. Quite enjoyable! ...more
Jul 05, 2020 rated it really liked it
The ‘Bright Young Things’ of the 1920s were the celebrities of the time - the young people of a post First World War generation who seemed determined to have a good time at all costs. This book is set in 1925, and is the second in a series of “Mitford Murders” from this author. It does stand alone providing the basic characters are established; that the main part of the action is seen from Louisa’s point of view as a nursery maid and part time companion of the eldest Mitford sisters Nancy and Pa ...more
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Other books in the series

Mitford Murders (4 books)
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