Mystery, romance, and pluck

The Mapping of Love and Death: A Maisie Dobbs Novel by Jacqueline Winspear is a compelling whodunit set in the 1930s. Detective and psychologist Maisie Dobbs is asked to solve a murder committed during the First World War. 

 Michael Clifton, a young mapmaker from America, had joined the British army out of loyalty to his family’s roots. His body is finally found in France in the 1930s in a trench with other soldiers, but there’s evidence he had been murdered. His mother wants to find the woman in his love letters, and his father wants to know what really happened to his son. Maisie agrees to take on the case, armed with a cache of Michael’s old letters and documents.
 
As Maisie unravels the mystery there is a nasty attempt on her life. Maisie also needs to deal with the illness and loss of her friend, mentor, and role model, Dr. Maurice Blanche. The plot thickens as Maisie gets a break in her case through a chance meeting.  
 
The book is rich with the grittiness of post-war London. I was captivated by the characters, especially the plucky, resourceful, and loving Maisie. This fresh, fast-paced story will appeal to readers who enjoy a classic mystery as well as strong female characters.    
 
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