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The Summer Birdcage

The Summer Birdcage is the latest outing for Sir John Grey, former spy and now Justice of the Peace, and Aminta, his successful playwright wife.  If you have never picked up one of Len’s earlier John Grey titles please do yourself a favour and do so now – the series is set in Restoration England and although possibly not one of the best-known periods of British history, it’s certainly one of the most entertaining and colourful… and the court of Charles II is definitely one of the most infamous and scandalous of its time.

The stage in Restoration London was of enormous importance during this period, and so the worlds of theatre and court clash in The Summer Birdcage when an aspiring young actress disappears, a corpse turns up which may or may not be the missing girl. Barbara Villiers, Lady Castlemaine and favourite mistress of Charles II, becomes embroiled in the resulting scandal when rumours circulate, suggesting the lost girl was next in line to replace Villiers as the king’s favourite.  And of course it is up to the former spy John Grey to wade into the treacherous waters of King Charles II’s court and find out what really is going on… and whether the king’s current mistress really is capable of murder.

The Summer Birdcage is bawdy, clever and huge, huge fun – just like the famous Restoration plays of the time.  Intrigue, misunderstanding and treachery abound… and by the time you get to the last page you will be hooked on John Grey and the cast of characters associated with this series.  Enjoy!

Krystyna Green