Sunday, 4 August 2019

Miss Treadway and the Field of Stars - Miranda Emmerson

I surprised myself at how much I enjoyed this at first seemingly light read.  Certainly easy to read (I zipped through this less than 300 page book over a weekend) and totally different; this was a spin on what seemed at first like a murder mystery, but  whilst certainly a mystery  - a good one - it's only possibly a murder - no body can be found however hard the police investigate.  Police procedures in the 1960s were certainly not what they are now and ignorance and abhorrent behaviour was sort of taken for granted.  Set London, An actress disappears.  Totally.  Her dresser Miss Treadway at the theatre is out of a job temporarily because the play was pulled when the lead disappeared and the theatre is dark for a while; and with time on her hands she is quick to try to find her actress. So in her very amateurish way, she starts to investigate the disappearance of Iolanthe Green.  She's only on the front pages for a short while as a dreadful case up North takes over, and suddenly no-one is talking about the missing actress anymore.

But there is much more to this story than the missing actress.  Lies, deceit  and an acutely smart observation on racial issues at that time form only part of the book.  It has a great twisty surprise half way through and a nicely surprising end too.  If, like me, the current explosion of psychological thrillers is not for you, try this one - I recommend it!


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