Review published on August 25, 2016.Reviewed by Nicola Smith
Nudge Reviewer Rating:
A Death at Fountains Abbey is the third book to feature Thomas Hawkins, a lovable rake. It can be read as a standalone, as can The Devil in the Marshalsea and The Last Confession of Thomas Hawkins, but things that happened in the earlier books are referred to quite a lot.
Set in 1728, Tom is sent by the Queen to Studley Hall, home of John Aislabie and his wife, to deal with some threatening letters that they have received and in turn to recover a ledger that refers to the South Sea financial scheme that went so horribly wrong a few years before. As usual, Tom, Kitty (his ‘wife’) and Sam Fleet (Tom’s ward) end up in all kinds of trouble – we’re talking about Half-Hanged Hawkins, after all.
I love this series of books. Antonia Hodgson weaves a fantastic tale of both fact and fiction and emerges with a thoroughly enjoyable romp of a story. Told in the first person by Tom himself, I can’t help but like him. He gets into all kinds of scrapes, both humorous and dangerous. Hodgson really brings to life the era but writes in a very accessible style. Whilst Tom is very much a London rogue, it was nice to move the action to Yorkshire and the beautiful backdrop of Fountains Abbey.
I hope this is not the last we see of Thomas Hawkins and Co. More of the same please!
– Nicola Smith
A Death at Fountains Abbey by Antonia Hodgson, published by Hodder & Stoughton on 25 August, 2016 in hardback at £14.99