Book Review: Jane and the Ghosts of Netley

Jane and the Ghosts of Netley by Stephanie Barron

Jane and the Ghosts of Netley (Jane Austen Mysteries, #7)
by Stephanie Barron

3.5 out of 5 stars

Lord Harold asks Jane Austen to keep an eye on Netley Lodge near the ruins of the ancient Netley Abbey. He fears there are French spies plotting mischief in the area. Jane takes her paint box and pretends to sketch the abbey ruins while keeping a close watch on all the comings and goings at the Lodge. But her watchfulness is in vain. A ship in the dockyards is set on fire and the shipwright is murdered. It is definitely the work of spies and traitors against the British crown.

I really liked this story and the history behind it. There is quite a lot of real history woven into the story with Jane’s family and her acquaintances, but of course the murder mystery and Jane’s involvement in the investigation are entirely fictional.

I enjoyed seeing more of Jane’s brother Frank, whom she nicknamed “Fly”. Jane also has a sweet scene with her sister-in-law, Mary, that shows how close they were. It was lovely to see how Jane cares so much for her family, but they also exasperate her at times. Jane is especially annoyed by her mother sometimes. Her mother is similar to Mrs. Bennet, always fussing and worried.

The murder mystery itself is good, and all the intrigue with the spies is exciting! I was completely shocked at the ending! I never imagined what the ending could be, and it was a total surprise.

I love the formal writing style that mimics the Regency era language. The dialogue is fairly close to what a real conversation might have been like in that time period. It really immerses you in the history.

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