This historical fiction which reads like a mystery is a compelling and complex story full of twists and turns. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and would have given it an even higher rating except for one significant factor. It is far too wordy. Michael Cox has quite a way with words and loves to put them together in long strings, but his writing style is excessively wordy and I can't say it adds to the story. If anything I found it detracted from the story and tried my patience. I was eager to follow the progression of the plot, and I was constantly thinking "Just get on with it - I want to know what happens next". His outstanding research is backed up with countless footnotes but I found most of them to bear little on the enjoyment or understanding of the story. Bottom line is...this is a great read, but certainly nothing to rush through. It needs to be enjoyed for what it is

becker's rating:
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