Title: ExileExile
Author: Jan Burchett & Sara Vogler
Pages: 188
Reading Level: 11 & up
Star Rating: ★★★

The sixth book in the Lady Grace Mysteries series.

The Story.

All of Queen Elizabeth I’s court is in a flutter, and her ladies-in-waiting are certainly not the least excited of the lot. The reason for their excitement? Banoo Yasmine, Princess of Sharakand, is due to put in an appearance at court and not only does she travel from exotic lands, but she also brings objects of value and mystery with her.

When one of those objects, a ruby called ‘the Heart of Kings’ is stolen, it falls to Lady Grace to once again investigate a matter for the Queen. But can she maintain not only her air of secrecy, but also her cool when her best friend is accused of committing the crime?

Discussion.

Okay, so this was actually a pretty fun story. Lady Grace is almost stereotypical in her boisterousness and, well, complete lack of grace, but there were still some hilariously fresh episodes in the course of her investigation.

The glimpses we catch of Elizabeth are few, but they seem to afford her both that strength of character and tongue which history has preserved.

There is much discussion about whether the visiting princess has magical powers or if her jewels are imbued with magical significance. In the end we learn that no magic has been involved in the case. Lady Grace comments that Marguerite of Angouleme (author of ‘A Godly Meditation of the Christian Soul’) is a bit “too Godly” for her taste.

The ladies in waiting tease each other about various of the lords and servant boys at court. When one of the girls is making a fuss about her stomacher, Grace thinks “The young gentlemen of the Court are usually far too busy gazing upon her bosom to look at her stomacher!” [pg. 10]

‘God’ is used twice, ‘h***’ once.

Conclusion. I liked this book more than I expected to. Surprisingly good.

Review © 2014 Laura Verret

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