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The Kill Fee #2, in the Poppy Denby Investigations Series, by Fiona Veitch Smith
Poppy Denby’s star is on the rise. Now the Arts and Entertainment Editor at The Daily Globe, she covers a glamorous exhibition of Russian Art at the Crystal Palace. During the exhibition a shot rings out, leaving an injured guard and an empty pedestal in the place of the largest Fabergé Egg in the collection. The egg itself is valuable, but more so are the secrets contained within – secrets that could destroy the royal families of Europe. Suspects are aplenty and Poppy, her editor Rollo, and the other staff of the Globe are delighted to be once again in the middle of a sensational story. When they are offered a ‘kill fee’ to drop the story, they know they are onto something explosive. But soon the investigation takes a dark turn when someone connected to the exhibition is murdered and an employee of the newspaper becomes a suspect. The race is on to find the egg before the killer strikes again.
Vendor: Lion Fiction
Publication Date: 2016
Dimensions: 7.75 X 5.00 (inches)
Series: Poppy Denby Investigations
Poppy Denby, arts and entertainment editor at the Daily Globe, covers an exhibition of Russian art, hosted by White Russian refugees, including members of the surviving exiled Romanov royal family. There is an armed robbery, a guard is shot, and the largest Faberge egg in the collection is stolen. While the egg itself is valuable, the secrets it contains within are priceless--secrets that could threaten major political powers.
Suspects are aplenty, including the former keeper of the Faberge egg, a Russian princess named Selena Romanova Yusopova. The interim Bolshevik Russian ambassador, Vasili Safin, inserts himself into the investigation, as he believes the egg--and the other treasures--should all be restored to the Russian people.
Poppy, her editor, Rollo, press photographer Daniel, and the other staff of the Globe are delighted to be once again in the middle of a sensational story. But soon the investigation takes a dark turn when another body is found and an employee of the newspaper becomes a suspect. The race is on to find both the key and the egg--can they be found before the killer strikes again?
Fiona Veitch Smith offers up another rollicking mystery set in 1920s London, when women's emancipation, the jazz age, the consequences of the First World War, and the aftermath of the Bolshevik revolution were rearranging the cultural landscape.
Sally M3 Stars Out Of 5Not Really Christian FictionJanuary 18, 2017Sally MQuality: 3Value: 3Meets Expectations: 3Poppy Denby first came on the scene in The Jazz Files, which I admit to not having read. This second novel apparently takes place in 1920, shortly after the events of the first title. There are references to those events, but knowledge of them (or lack thereof) didn't impact my reading enjoyment.
The opening pages consist of a map of 1920s London, highlighting locations pivotal to the story, and a thorough cast of characters. I referred to these often as Poppy and her friends visited various places and interacted with a lot of people. Pivotal Russian historical characters are featured, including Rasputin's assassin and the mother-in-law of Tsar Nicholas II. I found the narrative slow going through the first couple of chapters, but once it got to the Crystal Palace and the theft of the Faberge egg it sped up and caught my interest.
On her Poppy Denby website, the author makes a point of saying that this series is not Christian fiction. Instead, it's about a young woman experiencing the world and attempting to reconcile it to her faith. Consequently, there are things some readers may not appreciate. This is the "Roaring 20s" of jazz clubs, drinking, and promiscuity. Not all the characters are Christians; some are anything but. This is a good look at life in London after World War I, and the clash of old and new ideas. For example, Poppy wonders if a woman could marry and keep her career. As for the plot, I found it intriguing and it kept me guessing for much of the story. I wondered who was responsible for the theft and, as information gradually came to light, I began questioning who could be trusted. When the villain was revealed, it made sense even if I hadn't guessed who it was. Overall, it's a fun story which kept me entertained for a couple of hours.
Thank you to Kregel for my complimentary copy of The Kill Fee, which I received in exchange for my honest review.
bookwomanjoanOak Harbor, WAAge: 55-65Gender: female4 Stars Out Of 5Complex plot and many charactersJanuary 16, 2017bookwomanjoanOak Harbor, WAAge: 55-65Gender: femaleQuality: 4Value: 4Meets Expectations: 4Smith has provided readers with a complex plot in this mystery. It is London in 1920. Events in Russia have forced some of that country's royalty to find refuge in London. Poppy Denby, reporting on arts and entertainment for The Daily Globe, gets involved when there is a murder at an exhibition of Russian art. A Faberge Egg is missing from the exhibition. Poppy and her friends are determined to unravel the mystery of the murder and the theft.
One reason I like this series of mysteries is because of the effort Smith takes to be accurate in historical detail. While she includes historical information at the end of the novel, she also includes some information about White and Red Russians at the novel's beginning. Much of the plot revolves around those two groups of Russians and their attempts to obtain the Faberge Egg and the information it contains.
The narrative is mainly the 1920 era but we do go back periodically to 1917 1918 Russia for events leading up to the 1920 action in London. In the process, we learn about the 1917 Bolshevik revolution and the treatment of the Tsar Nicholas and his family. We also learn about the Faberge Eggs and that some of them had secret compartments.
This is a complex novel with many characters. Smith provides a list of characters at the beginning of the book. That's a good idea as some characters are not who they seem. It's also important to know whether the Russian characters are White or Red.
I recommend this novel to readers who enjoy a complex plot involving a number of characters. I think the plot was more complex than I appreciate. At the end, I really didn't understand why some of the Russians behaved as they did. I did like the attention to period detail, the dialog, music, etc. And I do like Poppy as a character and will be looking for the next in the series.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher. My comments are an independent and honest review.
MoonpiePRYORAge: 55-65Gender: female5 Stars Out Of 5HARD TO PUT DOWN!!January 16, 2017MoonpiePRYORAge: 55-65Gender: femaleQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 4This is Ms. Smiths second book in the Poppy Denby Investigates Series and I must say I enjoyed it as much as I did the first! Poppy is a roaring twenties newspaper reporter that has a knack for finding herself in the middle of criminal mysteries while trying to get her story!
Not only is the book exciting and suspenseful, it is also historical fiction, one of my favorites. I stepped back in time with the fashions, social issues and attitudes of an era of dramatic changes. I had never heard of the Romanov royal family or the red and white Russians until now. Very interesting!
Poppy finds herself in the midst of a dangerous political mystery. The Romanovs Faberge egg was stolen at an exhibition she attends for the newspaper. Although it is heavily guarded, someone manages to turn out all the lights and a guard is shot. The more she investigates the murkier the evidence becomes. Instead of narrowing down the list of suspects the number grows as do the murders. Who can she trust? She begins to learn the sad history of the exiled royal family and their stolen treasures. Poppy finds herself in great danger and realizes she may have gotten herself into situations she cannot handle. She may have even put those she loves at risk.
The story is fast paced and totally unpredictable. Poppys eye for detail is amazing. I never knew what was going to happen from moment to moment, finding myself constantly surprised at every twist and turn. Even though the plot is multi-faceted it was easy to read and follow. If you read it at night plan to stay up late; you wont be able to put it down! I couldnt! Looking forward to Poppys next adventures!
I received this book from Kregel Publications. I have given an honest review and the opinions I have stated are my own.
MaureenTSyracuse NYGender: female5 Stars Out Of 5History and MysteryJanuary 16, 2017MaureenTSyracuse NYGender: femaleQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5First I want to say that I loved the historical aspects of this book, we are reminded of the beginnings of Communist Russia, and the end of the Tzar.
In this story we are made aware of the wealth and relationships of White Russian Tzars and their families. I had forgotten a lot of this and was happy that the author worked this information into this suspense of this book.
Poppy Denby is a woman who was breaking ground for others, and didnt even realize it. What an exciting time the 1920s must have been for her in England, and we are led down a lot of twist and turns, and kept waiting for the other shoe to drop, and who is going to survive. The word pictures in this book kept me page turning, and enjoying every minute, and cant wait for more from this series.
I received this book through Kregel Blogging Tours, and was not required to give a positive review.
joyful334209FLAge: 45-54Gender: Female5 Stars Out Of 5don't kill - feeOctober 25, 2016joyful334209FLAge: 45-54Gender: FemaleQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5What an intelligently put together story. It is seriously dramatic and yet it is practical in that the Poppy was systematic in finding out who stole the Faberge Egg. She ends up being disturbed by Corrupt factions of the White Russians and the Red Russians - who knew there were so many colored Russian mafias? The author goes into detail about them - which is good because you would have no idea - With all of this going on you have her being a feminist in a time when that did not happen - women were not allowed rights per se. It was the 1920 - women stayed home - clean it - cook for their husbands etc. not Poppy. So - did she figure it out before the police? Did she get into trouble - bad trouble with the mafia? was she taken by the mafia? what happens to Poppy? In the end what happens to give you the goosebumps? all this and more will be revealed when you open the book and read.....I received a copy of this book to give an honest review.