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

(Maisie Dobbs #4)

3.99  ·  Rating details ·  22,828 ratings  ·  1,703 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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Melody Schwarting Paperbacks rose to popularity in the 1860s via the dime novel, though novels have been published in paperback since the 17th century. Penguin began pu…morePaperbacks rose to popularity in the 1860s via the dime novel, though novels have been published in paperback since the 17th century. Penguin began publishing "respectable" paperbacks in 1935, with books by Agatha Christie and Dorothy Sayers among the first ten titles. Louisa May Alcott, Upton Sinclair, and Robert Louis Stevenson found the dime novel a good medium for their works. The Library of Congress has over 40,000 such dime novels in its collection. Information from the Independent Online Booksellers Association.(less)

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Average rating 3.99  · 
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Mar 24, 2016 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
Lisa  (not getting friends updates) Vegan
Maisie Dobbs, book 4. I’m so used to reading e-books now that I ended up reading a Kindle edition from the library even though I had a hardcover edition available to me by midway through. Book 5 I have a friend’s autographed hardcover and it will be fun to read a “real” book again, and sans plastic library cover. I’m reading this series out loud to a friend.

This one has the usual wit & humor, and the psychological insight, and suspense at times too.

One incredibly sad happening (view spoiler)
Feb 14, 2011 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 Extraordinaire".

#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 charact
May 09, 2012 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
Carol Storm
Jul 22, 2014 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 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
Jun 18, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This is book 4 in the Maisie Dobbs series. I really enjoyed this story. We are in London 1931. Maisie is hired to investigate the death of an artist and determine if it was truly an accident or was it murder?

Maisie's personal life takes a next step and she helps Billy through his own personal tragedy. Meanwhile she's getting involved in the London underworld and smuggling rings while investigating her case.

The author does a fabulous job of creating the time period. I can feel the scenery and I
Jun 21, 2014 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
Ruthie Jones
Feb 24, 2015 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
Sep 06, 2007 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
Aug 05, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015-challenge
This series seems to be going downhill. I want to scream every time she says "Maisie inclined her head". In the beginning of the series, I thought Maisie was this strong character but she has morphed in a self righteous, smug person. ...more
Jan 19, 2019 rated it liked it
Personal difficulties with cozy mystery type series so really a 2.5 but as it doesn't seem fair to give a 2 as it's probably a well-done cozy, I've bumped the rating up to 3. ...more
♥ Sandi ❣
Dec 14, 2018 rated it liked it
Recommended to ♥ Sandi ❣ by: LOR series group read
3 stars

Although I cannot say that this is my favorite all time series, I thought that this book was maybe the best of the 4 I have read. Maisie did not get spread too thin with multiple crimes to solve in this book, she concentrated on one issue - whether or not an artist fell to his death or was pushed. What I felt made this book so much better was the side story involving her assistant Billy.

On to the 5th installment...
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
Charlene Intriago
Jan 21, 2015 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
Apr 22, 2011 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. ...more
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
Apr 29, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I had given up on a previous Maisie Dobbs, why did I try again? The result is the same, abandoned halfway through!

It must be me I imagine but I found the plot utter tosh and it was going nowhere. I was determined to continue reading it until I decided that it was a few hours of my life that would have been wasted so I gave it up.

Sorry, Maisie but you are just not for me.
I loved the first in this series when I read it several years ago, but I'm finding I'm not enjoying the subsequent ones as much... I'm not sure whether to keep going with this series - I probably will for another couple of books, at least, because I do like the era it is set in. I just found this book quite slow going - and easily put-downable. ...more
Aug 30, 2010 rated it it was ok
Maisie and I need to have some time away from each other. She's so cold and conceited these days. Her ever-increasing super powers are grating. ...more
Feb 24, 2020 rated it really liked it
I usually try to avoid books that are part of a series because I’ve got so many other things on my reading list. But I can’t seem to get enough of Maisie Dobbs, “psychologist and investigator,” so I’ve had to make an exception to that rule. This is #4 in the series and finds Maisie investigating the death of Nicholas Basssington-Hope, an artist who fell from the scaffolding as he was installing a painting. Maisie is hired by his grieving sister to find out whether the fall was accidental or the ...more
Nov 12, 2015 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
Jul 12, 2011 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
Dawn Michelle
I love this series so much - this one was tough and sad and I never saw the end coming. I think I have said that before with this series. ;-) But it is so true. And I am totally and completely sucked in and just want to read nothing but this series.
Sep 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
As I wrote in my review of the 1st novel in the Maisie Dobbs series,
From the moment I met the character of Maisie Dobbs, I loved her and couldn't wait to see her succeed in the opening of her very own office on Warren Street, "M. Dobbs, Trade and Personal Investigations" and to learn her backstory.
The year is now 1930, and readers of the series have known Maisie since Jacqueline Winspear introduced her to us as a woman that became a psychologist and investigator in the late 1920s following
Barbara Mitchell
Jul 07, 2011 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
Shirley Schwartz
Dec 12, 2013 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
Sep 21, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: mystery, historical
Well, the good things about this series have kept me coming back, despite its flaws, but they've finally been overwhelmed. Maisie's become a whiny, self-righteous know-it-all who is happy to lecture other people for the faults she herself shares. Plus the new age shit and multiple, ridiculous coincidences have increased with each entry, piling annoyance upon annoyance. Maybe I've just read too many in the series too quickly, but I'm done. I'm getting old though, and perhaps I'll return when I've ...more
Aug 09, 2012 rated it it was ok
The first book in this series grabbed me right away. This fourth one? Not so much. I "got it" early on in the book and just slogged through it afterwards to get to the end. The direction the series is taking, with Maisie knowing what's best for everyone in each and every situation, and with guidance from the beyond, is taking me further away from enjoyment thereof. ...more
Oct 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The best of the series so far, even a bit better than the first. The mystery itself in this one is really interesting, with a well-wrought supporting cast in the Bassington-Hope family. The withheld details are less annoying here (and less painful) than in the other novels. And the balance between delving into Maisie's past versus building on her present is spot on.

Looking forward to #5!
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Madison Mega-Mara...: Messenger of Truth 1 3 Apr 28, 2013 04:37PM  
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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

Other books in the series

Maisie Dobbs (1 - 10 of 17 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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