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In the third novel of this bestselling series, London investigator Maisie Dobbs faces grave danger as she returns to the site of her most painful WWI memories to resolve the mystery of a pilot's death. Agatha Christie's Miss Marple. Sue Grafton's Kinsey Millhone. Alexander McCall Smith's Precious Ramotswe. Every once in a while, a detective bursts on the scene who captures readers' hearts--and imaginations--and doesn't let go. And so it was with Jacqueline Winspear's Maisie Dobbs, who made her debut just two years ago in the eponymously titled first book of the series, and is already on her way to becoming a household name. A deathbed plea from his wife leads Sir Cecil Lawton to seek the aid of Maisie Dobbs, psychologist and investigator. As Maisie soon learns, Agnes Lawton never accepted that her aviator son was killed in the Great War, a torment that led her not only to the edge of madness but to the doors of those who practice the dark arts and commune with the spirit world. In accepting the assignment, Maisie finds her spiritual strength tested, as well as her regard for her mentor, Maurice Blanche. The mission also brings her together once again with her college friend Priscilla Evernden, who served in France and who lost three brothers to the war--one of whom, it turns out, had an intriguing connection to the missing Ralph Lawton. Following on the heels of the triumphant Birds of a Feather, PARDONABLE LIES is the most compelling installment yet in the chronicles of Maisie Dobbs, "a heroine to cherish" (Marilyn Stasio, The New York Times Book Review).
"Winspear's engrossing third Maisie Dobbs novel maintains the high quality of its predecessors....Winspear writes seamlessly, enriching the whole with vivid details of English life on a variety of social levels." (starred review)
"Female detectives are usually tough...or cute....Maisie...is neither: she's a cerebral, vulnerable inquisitor."
"Maisie Dobbs is a delightful character cleverly designed to appeal to a post-feminist audience without overstepping the bounds of historical possibility....The war's long shadow over Maisie and her clients and suspects lends emotional depth to an enjoyable mystery."
From the Publisher
The young policewoman stood in the corner of the room.
Set in 1930, this is the third in a critically acclaimed mystery series featuring Maisie Dobbs, a former maid who became a WWI nurse and then a psychologist/private investigator. Respected barrister Sir Cecil Lawton felt no particular affection for his son Ralph, but his wife, Agnes, was devastated when they received a report that Ralph's plane was shot down during the war. Despite all information to the contrary, Lady Agnes Lawton continued to insist over the years that Ralph still lived, and her unshakeable, obsessive belief unfortunately drove her into a private mental hospital. On her deathbed, she begged her husband to carry on the search, and his reluctant acquiescence to her dying wish brings him to Maisie Dobbs, who agrees to take on the case in exchange for a small fee plus Lawton's expert legal services in the defense of a poor 13-year-old girl who killed her abusive uncle.