02 August 2012

"Royal Blood" by Rhys Bowen

Royal Blood (Her Royal Spyness Mysteries, #4)Royal Blood by Rhys Bowen
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Genre: cozy mystery in a historical setting
4th book in the Her Royal Spyness series
On my TBR list? Yes

Rhys Bowen's Her Royal Spyness series is set in Great Britain in the 1930s. The heroine is Lady Georgiana (Georgie), a young lady in her early 20s who is 34th in line for the English throne. Because she is unattached and unemployed, the queen keeps giving her little assignments that end up entangling her in a murder mystery. I believe that this series definitely fits into the "cozy mystery" genre, as the books are peopled with quirky characters and the descriptions of the murders aren't gory. For me, the innocence of a cozy mystery works best in a historical setting and Bowen carries it off well.

In Royal Blood, Lady Georgiana is asked to represent the British royals at a wedding in Transylvania. Of course, you can't mention Transylvania without making the reader think of vampires and Bowen addresses that in her usual lighthearted fashion. All of Georgie's family and friends from the previous books are represented here, but Bowen includes them in a way that doesn't feel like she had to give each character equal time. The Great Depression is not ignored in this book; part of the reason why Georgie is at the mercy of the queen's whims is because she has no money and she gets sent to house parties where she can eat well for a time. Still, I appreciate that Bowen keeps the mood of the stories airy by focusing on the people who still had money during that time.

This is my favorite out of the Her Royal Spyness series to date and it made me want to rush to read the next installment. Many people turn to lighter books during the summer months and I think this series fits the bill. You could easily pick up any book in the series and not feel lost, but they are like popcorn: you will want to read them all.

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