Wednesday, November 28, 2012


Rhys Bowen’s The Twelve Clues of Christmas was fun to read.

In 1933, Lady Georgiana Rannoch spends her Christmas in a small village, Tiddleton-under-Lovey. Georgie is something like 32nd in line for the throne. 

Actually, Georgie is an impoverished member of the aristocracy. She takes a job as the social director for a wealthy person’s house party.
Lo and Behold! Unbeknownst to Georgie, her true love, Darcy O’Mara, is the nephew of the householder who hired Georgie.

And then the murders begin.

The murderer plans a murder for each of the twelve days of Christmas except one day he plans a major robbery instead. Each murder looks like an accident, but Georgie knows better. All the murders take place at the time of the Lovey Curse.

A condemned witch put the Christmas curse on Tiddleton-under-Lovey a long time ago. Her rumored ancestor Wild Sal still roams the moors.

Georgie and her grandfather (a former London policeman) try to find the common thread among the crimes. Meanwhile, everyone enjoys an old-fashioned Christmas.

Georgie’s eccentric has-been-actress mother and a friend, Noel Coward, have coincidentally rented a cottage in Tiddleton-under-Lovey. They work to write a play together.

Georgie and Darcy affirm their love. Wild Sal saves Georgie more than once. And we see a whole series of Christmas traditions, many which have since gone by the wayside.

This is an incredibly well-plotted book. It is just plain fun. Everything works out in good order. The book ends with exciting action. And Georgie makes a decision which mirrors a famous historical decision made at the same time.

I’m sure most of the people reading The Twelve Clues of Christmas have read other Lady Georgiana Rannoch novels. They will know the main characters and the storyline. But these characters were new to me. I enjoyed them all.

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