Pardonable Lies

Written by Jacqueline Winspear
Review by Nina de Angeli

In 1930, still haunted by his son’s death in the Great War, Cecil Lawton, Q.C., hires Maisie Dobbs, ostensibly to document the circumstances of the plane crash near Reims that killed his son. Maisie reluctantly agrees to take the case, although it means revisiting France for the first time since her horrific experiences nursing in a battlefield casualty station, where she was wounded and lost the man she loved. Facing her nightmares will be the greatest challenge of the case. Adding to the complications, her best friend begs her to investigate the unexplained wartime death of her beloved brother, Peter, last heard of in France. Was he involved in secret intelligence missions? In this outing, Maisie faces both physical and psychological dangers, as the two cases reveal unexpected connections.

Once a precocious housemaid educated by her wealthy employer, Maisie has a well-established London business as a psychologist and private investigator. Her uncanny intuitive skills hover on the edge of paranormal, but Maisie is a thoroughly credible character in spite of that. In Pardonable Lies, Winspear delivers another elegant, warmhearted mystery with a strong sense of period and place. Third in series.