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Miss Aldridge Regrets

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The glittering RMS Queen Mary. A nightclub singer on the run. An aristocratic family with secrets worth killing for. London, 1936. Lena Aldridge wonders if life has passed her by. The dazzling theatre career she hoped for hasn't worked out. Instead, she's stuck singing in a sticky-floored basement club in Soho, and her married lover has just left her. But Lena has always ha The glittering RMS Queen Mary. A nightclub singer on the run. An aristocratic family with secrets worth killing for. London, 1936. Lena Aldridge wonders if life has passed her by. The dazzling theatre career she hoped for hasn't worked out. Instead, she's stuck singing in a sticky-floored basement club in Soho, and her married lover has just left her. But Lena has always had a complicated life, one shrouded in mystery as a mixed-race girl passing for white in a city unforgiving of her true racial heritage. She's feeling utterly hopeless until a stranger offers her the chance of a lifetime: a starring role on Broadway and a first-class ticket on the Queen Mary bound for New York. After a murder at the club, the timing couldn't be better, and Lena jumps at the chance to escape England. But death follows her onboard when an obscenely wealthy family draws her into their fold just as one among them is killed in a chillingly familiar way. As Lena navigates the Abernathy's increasingly bizarre family dynamic, she realizes that her greatest performance won't be for an audience, but for her life. With seductive glamor, simmering family drama, and dizzying twists, Louise Hare makes her beguiling US debut.


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The glittering RMS Queen Mary. A nightclub singer on the run. An aristocratic family with secrets worth killing for. London, 1936. Lena Aldridge wonders if life has passed her by. The dazzling theatre career she hoped for hasn't worked out. Instead, she's stuck singing in a sticky-floored basement club in Soho, and her married lover has just left her. But Lena has always ha The glittering RMS Queen Mary. A nightclub singer on the run. An aristocratic family with secrets worth killing for. London, 1936. Lena Aldridge wonders if life has passed her by. The dazzling theatre career she hoped for hasn't worked out. Instead, she's stuck singing in a sticky-floored basement club in Soho, and her married lover has just left her. But Lena has always had a complicated life, one shrouded in mystery as a mixed-race girl passing for white in a city unforgiving of her true racial heritage. She's feeling utterly hopeless until a stranger offers her the chance of a lifetime: a starring role on Broadway and a first-class ticket on the Queen Mary bound for New York. After a murder at the club, the timing couldn't be better, and Lena jumps at the chance to escape England. But death follows her onboard when an obscenely wealthy family draws her into their fold just as one among them is killed in a chillingly familiar way. As Lena navigates the Abernathy's increasingly bizarre family dynamic, she realizes that her greatest performance won't be for an audience, but for her life. With seductive glamor, simmering family drama, and dizzying twists, Louise Hare makes her beguiling US debut.

30 review for Miss Aldridge Regrets

  1. 4 out of 5

    Nilufer Ozmekik

    Well, well this is thrilling mash up of Woman in cabin 10 meets Titanic with Agatha Christie vibes ( it reminds me of Death on the Nile without its brilliant Belgian detective ) A glamorous historical fiction consists of class differences, raising of Nazism, hard competition at Broadway world, sex traffic of underaged girls, betrayal, cheating, racism, mansplaining mixed with gripping whodunnit mystery takes place in RMS Queen Mary. And of course beautiful forbidden romance was also thrown into Well, well this is thrilling mash up of Woman in cabin 10 meets Titanic with Agatha Christie vibes ( it reminds me of Death on the Nile without its brilliant Belgian detective ) A glamorous historical fiction consists of class differences, raising of Nazism, hard competition at Broadway world, sex traffic of underaged girls, betrayal, cheating, racism, mansplaining mixed with gripping whodunnit mystery takes place in RMS Queen Mary. And of course beautiful forbidden romance was also thrown into equation. Lena Aldridge, at the age of twenty six, mixed race girl who is a quiet fighter, slowly losing of her hope to have a brighter future as she barely lands on theater roles, singing at a night club her best friend’s scumbag husband is owned, having a relationship with a married man, living in a shoe box room in Soho. The book opens she is on stage, singing when her boss/ her best friend’s husband Tommy Scarsdale dies in front her eyes. He’s poisoned and she might be involved with the murder. Luckily Charlie Bacon: ex police officer, look alike Clark Gable with strange last name appears out of nowhere at the right name in the right place, making her an offer she cannot reject. He offers her to be a star in a Broadway play and she has to board on a ship to travel to big Apple in a few days later. Lena has nothing to lose and this offer can save her from her biggest predicament ( a person of interest of a brutal crime) During her journey, she finds herself at the same table within Abernathy family: ultra rich, sophisticated and also very dysfunctional family: each of them keeps terrible secrets and one of them is a killer who plans to put blame on Lena for his/ her own misdemeanors. But who and why? I kept guessing the identity of culprit: it was not so foreseeable! Mostly I liked the characterization! Lena who is resilient, determined, doing her best to survive in jungle as a mixed race, penniless, hungry, ambitious girl with pure talent. It’s such an exciting, riveting historical fiction meets thriller- whodunnit mystery that fully enjoyed and devoured in one sit that I highly recommend! Special thanks to NetGalley and Berkley Publishing Group for sharing this digital reviewer copy with me in exchange my honest thoughts.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Ceecee

    3.5 rounded up. When the owner of the Canary club Tommy Scarsdale dies right in front of her, mixed race singer Lena Aldridge decides to accept the offer of a lifetime role in a Broadway show. What has she got to lose? She has no job, her beloved father Alfie has recently died and she’s all alone bar best friend Maggie. Before she knows it she’s aboard the Queen Mary bound for New York, little realising the play has already begun and the curtain is raised as she plays the role of a lifetime. The 3.5 rounded up. When the owner of the Canary club Tommy Scarsdale dies right in front of her, mixed race singer Lena Aldridge decides to accept the offer of a lifetime role in a Broadway show. What has she got to lose? She has no job, her beloved father Alfie has recently died and she’s all alone bar best friend Maggie. Before she knows it she’s aboard the Queen Mary bound for New York, little realising the play has already begun and the curtain is raised as she plays the role of a lifetime. The story is told in the present aboard Queen Mary and backtracks to the previous seven days from the events at the Canary club. There’s a lot to like in the latest novel by the talented Louise Hare. The setting aboard the Queen Mary is excellent and there is a real clarity conveyed in the differences between those in the luxury of the upper decks and those below. Central to events on the liner is the wealthy Abernathy family who Lena meets on the first night on board the luxury ship. The dynamics between the family are vividly portrayed and we have everything from wealthy gilded cages to philandering. There are scenes where the atmosphere is both strange and strained with a lot of subtext to spot and plenty of uncomfortable machinations especially as we get further to New York. The characterisation is very good especially of Lena who trades to worlds with her mixed race background. She is extremely likeable, intelligent, pragmatic and is growing in self-awareness especially of her situation. The historical context is well done especially the values of the time, the almost casual institutional racism and the rise of Nazism is there in the background. The events on the liner present us with a ‘locked liner mystery’ and parts of this are very good and feel very Christie-esque which fits nicely with the 1930s timeline. However, I think that it gets a bit over the top but most importantly this also allows you to perceive who is behind proceedings. I’m also not sure you need the inserts between Lena‘s narrative from this character as it jars with me, striking a false note and it breaks the flow of the novel. Overall, though despite these reservations I do enjoy this book as it has a lot more depth to it than other books in this genre. I love the cover to which is stunning. With thanks to NetGalley and especially to HQ for the much appreciated arc in return for an honest review.

  3. 5 out of 5

    PamG

    Review coming soon.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Whispering Stories

    1936, mixed-raced Lena Aldridge is a showgirl at a club in Soho, London. One night the boss (and her best friend’s husband) is poisoned and dies whilst in the audience. Lena may have had a hand in the murder and tries to keep her head down. It’s not long though before a theatre producer who knew her deceased father gets in touch and wants her to appear in his new show on Broadway. Knowing that she needs to leave London and that it is an opportunity of a lifetime, she accepts and travels in comfor 1936, mixed-raced Lena Aldridge is a showgirl at a club in Soho, London. One night the boss (and her best friend’s husband) is poisoned and dies whilst in the audience. Lena may have had a hand in the murder and tries to keep her head down. It’s not long though before a theatre producer who knew her deceased father gets in touch and wants her to appear in his new show on Broadway. Knowing that she needs to leave London and that it is an opportunity of a lifetime, she accepts and travels in comfort to New York on the Queen Mary. However, someone on board is wanting to make her life hell, and what better way than framing her for murder. But who and why would someone go to the trouble of following her onto the ship to stage the elaborate plot? Miss Aldridge Regrets is a relaxing read, given the plot. It makes you feel like you are in calmer times and definitely back in time to 1936. The book is split into two different periods, the ship crossing and 2 weeks previously and the lead up to the murder. Plus, a fewflash backs to Lena’s childhood. Her new theatre boss wants her to make herself known on the crossing and to get to know the wealthy passengers, but Lena feels out of her depth. She isn’t used to a life of luxury or hobnobbing with the rich but she soon realises that the rich are not that much different from everyone else and some are not to be trusted. The book was engaging and it held my attention throughout. I was eager to find out who had it in for Lena and why. The plot certainly has a murder-mystery feel to it. A fabulous historical crime mystery that was decently paced and kept me guessing for most of the book. I enjoyed it from beginning to end.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Alan Cotterell

    I would like to thank Netgalley and HQ for an advance copy in exchange for an honest review. This is a stand-alone novel that switches between a transatlantic sea voyage on the Queen Mary in 1936, and events from a week before. This was a new author for me so wasn’t quite sure what to expect. It was a little bit mixed, with the author trying to capture the era and its social and ethnic status issues, and weave in a murder. Overall I found it a little slow and overlong. It was difficult to absorb y I would like to thank Netgalley and HQ for an advance copy in exchange for an honest review. This is a stand-alone novel that switches between a transatlantic sea voyage on the Queen Mary in 1936, and events from a week before. This was a new author for me so wasn’t quite sure what to expect. It was a little bit mixed, with the author trying to capture the era and its social and ethnic status issues, and weave in a murder. Overall I found it a little slow and overlong. It was difficult to absorb yourself in the narrative and I soon got to the stage where I didn’t really care. This was an unusual variation on the genre of murder mysteries set in the golden age, dealing with mixed race, dated attitudes to ladies and the social standing variation between the English and the Americans. But not for me.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Susan

    I must admit that I was somewhat taken in by the cover, and blurb, surrounding this book. I love mysteries set on ships, but I felt that the author really did not do justice to the setting. The novel opens with the death of a nightclub owner, and, within a short period, singer Lena Aldridge is aboard the Queen Mary, heading for New York. I must admit I doubted that, as a witness to a sudden death, she would be allowed to travel abroad but, that was just my first concern with the plot and I was, I must admit that I was somewhat taken in by the cover, and blurb, surrounding this book. I love mysteries set on ships, but I felt that the author really did not do justice to the setting. The novel opens with the death of a nightclub owner, and, within a short period, singer Lena Aldridge is aboard the Queen Mary, heading for New York. I must admit I doubted that, as a witness to a sudden death, she would be allowed to travel abroad but, that was just my first concern with the plot and I was, at least at first, willing to go with it. Lena has an interesting background, being a mixed-race woman who passes as white – something she is informed will be important to hide in the more colour conscious United States. However, although her background story had depth, I didn’t feel that her character did. In fact, most of the characters in the novel were quite stereotyped. Having been told by Charlie Bacon, who invites Lena to New York on behalf of Broadway Impresario Benny Walker, that she should impress the rich and influential passengers on board, Lena finds herself on the table of the elderly Francis Parker and his relatives. These range from Parker’s son in law, Jack Abernathy, whose hands roam inappropriately to his sweet and innocent granddaughter, Carrie. However, she never really seems to go beyond the characters on the table and Hare does not make use of the closed shipboard setting as well as she could. The story goes back and forth between events on board to the back story of what happened in the Canary Club in Soho, and it soon becomes clear that there are those on board who do not wish Lena well. Overall, this felt fairly routine, with some plot twists thrown in, but I couldn’t gather up much enthusiasm for what happened as I just never felt that involved with the characters. I received a copy of the book from the publisher, via NetGalley for review.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Charmaine

    Have just started this and am loving it. It's quite charming.this was a great premise and started well but then ran out of steam. It was almost trying too hard. The mystery also failed to grab. Maybe it's just my mood! Have just started this and am loving it. It's quite charming.this was a great premise and started well but then ran out of steam. It was almost trying too hard. The mystery also failed to grab. Maybe it's just my mood!

  8. 4 out of 5

    Adrian Dooley

    Im new to this author and enjoyed this one overall although I did find it a little long winded. Set in the 1930s, its the story of Lena Alridge, a mixed race Jazz singer in her 20s working in a seedy little club in Soho London. When a surprise opportunity of starring in a musical on Broadway arises she jumps at the chance and is whisked away first class on a cruise liner bound for New York, The vast bulk of the story takes place on the cruise liner as Lena gets involved with a very rich family and Im new to this author and enjoyed this one overall although I did find it a little long winded. Set in the 1930s, its the story of Lena Alridge, a mixed race Jazz singer in her 20s working in a seedy little club in Soho London. When a surprise opportunity of starring in a musical on Broadway arises she jumps at the chance and is whisked away first class on a cruise liner bound for New York, The vast bulk of the story takes place on the cruise liner as Lena gets involved with a very rich family and secrets are revealed as well as murders! This one was enjoyable overall. I suppose its a murder mystery and it did have the feel of an Agatha Christie novel at times but I saw it more as a social commentary piece and the prejudice of not only race but also class and indeed sex. Its also a book about self discovery and its all wrapped up in this murder mystery format which is quite a lot to take in. It did fall apart a bit towards the end and I did find it a little too long but I enjoyed it overall and the author certainly captured the atmosphere of the era and presented some fairly well rounded characters. One of the main messages I took form the book is that everything isnt black and white(ironic given the subject matter). The characters that we root for all have their own baggage and there arent your traditional goodies and baddies on show here. Thanks to the publisher for the ARC through Netgalley.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Wendy W.

    Miss Aldridge Regrets by Louise Hare is glamorous historical fiction set on the famous ocean liner, the Queen Mary. Most of the action takes place on the ocean liner, with flashbacks to London. Miss Aldridge Regrets is a family drama and a murder mystery all in one. Lena Aldridge is an aspiring bi-racial actress in 1936, in London. After trying for years to make a career, she’s starting to realize that she just might not make it. When she’s singing in a club in SoHo, she witnesses a murder. The Miss Aldridge Regrets by Louise Hare is glamorous historical fiction set on the famous ocean liner, the Queen Mary. Most of the action takes place on the ocean liner, with flashbacks to London. Miss Aldridge Regrets is a family drama and a murder mystery all in one. Lena Aldridge is an aspiring bi-racial actress in 1936, in London. After trying for years to make a career, she’s starting to realize that she just might not make it. When she’s singing in a club in SoHo, she witnesses a murder. The murder of the abusive husband of her best friend. Knowing she might be implicated in the murder, she jumps at the chance, when a stranger gives her two first-class tickets on the Queen Mary and a promise of a Broadway role. Charlie Bacon, the mysterious man who promised Lena a Broadway part, accompanies her on the cruise. He insists they sit with a wealthy American family, the Abernathy’s for dinner, and as she gets to know this wealthy American family, she realizes they are very dysfunctional. However, when another murder happens at sea, on the way to New York, to one of the Abernathy family members, Lena starts to wonder if her own life is in danger. I enjoyed this story and the mystery very much. I loved the setting of the Queen Mary, and the author did a wonderful job of describing life on the ocean liner. I also liked that Lena’s love interest is a member of the staff of the ship, and that made for some interesting scenes from the working class. The Abernathy’s were quite an interesting, obscenely wealthy family, and although none of them were very likable, they were very interesting. I liked that the second murder happened on the ship, in the middle of the ocean, with no place to escape, so we knew the murderer had to be on board the ship. As for the murder, I was surprised and didn’t figure it out until the characters did. Although there were plenty of clues. I recommend Miss Aldrige Regrets to anyone who enjoys women’s fiction and mysteries. I received a complimentary copy of this book. The opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Elizabeth of Silver's Reviews

    FULL REVIEW WILL BE ON JULY 5. From a murder on land to murders at sea. Lena had been there for them. One she thought she was responsible for, and the others she was set up for. MISS ALDRIDGE REGRETS is a mystery and family drama all rolled into one. It took a little for me to warm up to the story line, but as secrets unfold, you will quickly be turning the pages and enjoying the hustle and bustle. Those readers who enjoy books set on ocean liners and this time period will definitely enjoy MISS ALD FULL REVIEW WILL BE ON JULY 5. From a murder on land to murders at sea. Lena had been there for them. One she thought she was responsible for, and the others she was set up for. MISS ALDRIDGE REGRETS is a mystery and family drama all rolled into one. It took a little for me to warm up to the story line, but as secrets unfold, you will quickly be turning the pages and enjoying the hustle and bustle. Those readers who enjoy books set on ocean liners and this time period will definitely enjoy MISS ALDRIDGE REGRETS. 4/5 This book was given to me by the publisher via NetGalley for an honest review.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Maria Smith

    I'm sorry to report that I didn't enjoy this one very much at all. The story itself was lacked lustre or intrigue, which I had expected for a whodunnit set in the 30's on a cruise liner. The Abernathy family characters were very one dimensional and I struggled to stay connected enough to even tell some of them apart. The book felt very disjointed and it was a tedious read. However I see some good reviews of this one out there so obviously just wasn't for me. Thanks to NetGalley for the ARC. I'm sorry to report that I didn't enjoy this one very much at all. The story itself was lacked lustre or intrigue, which I had expected for a whodunnit set in the 30's on a cruise liner. The Abernathy family characters were very one dimensional and I struggled to stay connected enough to even tell some of them apart. The book felt very disjointed and it was a tedious read. However I see some good reviews of this one out there so obviously just wasn't for me. Thanks to NetGalley for the ARC.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Karen

    Crime and cruise ships will always be a win for me and Miss Aldridge Regrets particularly appealed as I have cruised on the current Cunard Queen Mary and it is a beautiful ship. This story of murder, racial identity, prejudice and the seedy side of London clubland was one that I was really looking forward to and I wasn’t disappointed. With a dual timeline and a backstory set in London’s Soho, the setting of the Queen Mary liner is an excellent choice, there is that ‘locked room’ vibe of a ship w Crime and cruise ships will always be a win for me and Miss Aldridge Regrets particularly appealed as I have cruised on the current Cunard Queen Mary and it is a beautiful ship. This story of murder, racial identity, prejudice and the seedy side of London clubland was one that I was really looking forward to and I wasn’t disappointed. With a dual timeline and a backstory set in London’s Soho, the setting of the Queen Mary liner is an excellent choice, there is that ‘locked room’ vibe of a ship where there is no escape, together with the glamour and sophistication of the first class passenger lifestyle enjoyed by those rich enough. Travelling in luxury doesn’t come naturally to club singer and aspiring actress Lena Aldridge of whom it was said ….”you sang like an angel with a twenty-a-day habit”. The job opportunity of a lifetime has been offered to her out of the blue and it couldn’t have come at a better time. Her beloved father Alfie has died and she really is alone, apart from her best friend Maggie who has her own troubles. Travelling first class on the Queen Mary at someone else’s expense, Lena sees how the other half live however this will not be the relaxing peaceful voyage that she envisaged. Lena’s character is mixed race and the issue of racial prejudice comes through clearly in this story in its different forms. Although Lena can pass as European, it was pointed out to her that she may not find employment as easy to find in the US with their differing prejudices if people know her ethnic background. With Lena struggling to fit into either side of the racial divide, she is glad to find a friend on board, albeit in the lower boarding class – she will certainly need someone on her side. With its slow pace, the story gradually builds momentum as the ship sails closer to New York along with the rising death count. There is a fairly small cast of characters to get to know and I was intrigued by Lena’s relationships with her fellow passengers, mainly a dysfunctional family, which were at the core of the story. To say more would venture into spoiler territory. As a character, Lena was savvy enough, her life in the club had hardened her although there was still a vulnerability about her. Through her first person narrative, readers were privy to her thoughts about her life in London and the events that forced her hand, her worries about Maggie and in particular the dangerous situation she found herself in onboard. I very much enjoyed the historical feel and the crime element of this, the plot of which wouldn’t have been out of place in an Agatha Christie story. The reveal certainly took me unaware, and although I have mixed feelings about its plausibility there was enough misdirection and surprise throughout to keep my imagination in overdrive. Overall, this is one to recommend. Louise Hare writes so well and draws her characters superbly. The plot makes for an intriguing and suspenseful read and one that I’m sure will be enjoyed by fans of historical and crime fiction.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Laura

    Book reviews on www.snazzybooks.com Miss Aldridge Regrets is an entertaining, fun mystery story. We follow Lena Aldridge, a singer who's fallen on hard times and is promised a new life on the stage in New York. However, on the ship there, someone is murdered, and the way they died is weirdly similar to a situation Lena experienced back in London... As no doubt many other reviews will also have noted, this book really reminded me of a golden-age-style mystery novel - set largely on the Queen Mary s Book reviews on www.snazzybooks.com Miss Aldridge Regrets is an entertaining, fun mystery story. We follow Lena Aldridge, a singer who's fallen on hard times and is promised a new life on the stage in New York. However, on the ship there, someone is murdered, and the way they died is weirdly similar to a situation Lena experienced back in London... As no doubt many other reviews will also have noted, this book really reminded me of a golden-age-style mystery novel - set largely on the Queen Mary ship, with flashbacks to what happened in the run-up to her journey there (and what helped her along in her decision to take the plunge and leave London), we switch between the two timeframes and, as a result, there are limited 'suspects' in this mystery. The fact that the murder took place on the boat means it is a sort of locked-room mystery. There's plenty of glitz and glamour in this novel, which makes a nice change from some of the other crime novels I tend to read - Lena and her companion for the journey, Charlie, are placed on a table with a very wealthy family, and they're based up in First Class. We see elements of Lena's life as she sings in the Canary club in London and her friendship with Maggie, who she is now far away from, and we realise not everyone is quite as they seem... I enjoyed this novel - because it's quite a slow novel I found it fairly relaxing, and it was an easy read that kept me engaged throughout. I liked the historical details - never too packed in but there are references to things happening at that time in Europe and throughout the world, and the way society treats people who are different and it's all interesting and a worthy reminder of how far we've come (or sadly in some cases, perhaps not so far...). Definitely recommended. Many thanks to the publisher, HQ, for providing a copy of this book on which I chose to write an honest review.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Lucy

    This is a decent Christie-style murder mystery where every character has a clear motive. I loved the premise! The setting on a 1930s sea crossing from England to New York provided a fun ‘locked room’ element to the story and paid tribute to the golden age of crime. There wasn’t anything I particularly disliked and I wanted to love it, but something about the writing didn’t quite do it for me. I wasn’t gripped by the story and didn’t really feel anything much for the characters. I think there was This is a decent Christie-style murder mystery where every character has a clear motive. I loved the premise! The setting on a 1930s sea crossing from England to New York provided a fun ‘locked room’ element to the story and paid tribute to the golden age of crime. There wasn’t anything I particularly disliked and I wanted to love it, but something about the writing didn’t quite do it for me. I wasn’t gripped by the story and didn’t really feel anything much for the characters. I think there was perhaps too much going on at times and a bit more focus on fewer elements to the story might have made it more impactful. That said, there were elements I really liked. Lena was sort of leading a double life between her time trying to impress the upper class Abernathy family, vs the bond she forms with an African American jazz singer. It really brings out the context of the Great Depression and the contrast between rich and poor. I found the discussion of race really interesting too and how as a mixed-race woman, Lena feels stuck between two worlds. Should she keep trying to pass as white to make it in the showbiz industry, or should she embrace her black roots and be truer to herself? Overall, a solid and entertaining read. Thank you to HQ and Netgalley for the ARC in exchange for an honest review.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Jules

    We learn all about Lena, who’s mother abandoned her in London as a child, where she grew up with her father. Finding herself working for a man she loathes, a friend of her father’s appears & offers her a new life in New York & she makes a decision quickly to follow her dreams of a possible job on Broadway. But on board the Queen Mary, things go from bad to worse after Lena is taken under the wing of the Abernathys, a wealthy NY family. Not is all as it seems (is it ever?!). A great murder myster We learn all about Lena, who’s mother abandoned her in London as a child, where she grew up with her father. Finding herself working for a man she loathes, a friend of her father’s appears & offers her a new life in New York & she makes a decision quickly to follow her dreams of a possible job on Broadway. But on board the Queen Mary, things go from bad to worse after Lena is taken under the wing of the Abernathys, a wealthy NY family. Not is all as it seems (is it ever?!). A great murder mystery on board the Queen Mary in the 1930s. Loved the glamour of the ship, the dinners, the cocktails, and (for Lena, at least), dancing & singing at the Pig & Whistle! Fast paced, mysterious & I can’t help comparing to Agatha Christie. Fabulous!

  16. 5 out of 5

    Donna

    I must say I did like the sounds of this book when I read the blurb but when I got to reading it I did find it a bit boring but it wasn't too bad it just took me a while to read it. I was expecting a bit more excitement and thrills but they just didn't eventuate like I thought they would. I do like the way the story is in two parts with tales of the sea voyage and then back to tales of the week before and leading up to the sea voyage. It was done well and didn't feel disjointed. But I must say it I must say I did like the sounds of this book when I read the blurb but when I got to reading it I did find it a bit boring but it wasn't too bad it just took me a while to read it. I was expecting a bit more excitement and thrills but they just didn't eventuate like I thought they would. I do like the way the story is in two parts with tales of the sea voyage and then back to tales of the week before and leading up to the sea voyage. It was done well and didn't feel disjointed. But I must say it did seem to be a long read, it was a bit lack-lustre, sometimes a bit confusing with all the characters and how they fit into the story and it just didn't have enough excitement and suspense for me. An alright book with great characters but it just needed a bit more oomph!

  17. 5 out of 5

    Rainelle

    The book has some notable interest, such as the hidden desires that some of the characters have for one another. There are secrets to be uncovered regarding noticeable non appearances of people of importance. And there are mysteries to be unraveled by people who are up to no good, hidden by their giggles. I like that the story was narrated by the lead character.

  18. 4 out of 5

    J.J.

    The cover design and the title of this book led me to expect a cross between an Agatha Christie novel and a cosy mystery. It tells the story of a young mixed-race woman, a singer/actress ekeing out a living in a seedy nightclub, who gets entangled in a murder and subsequently leaves England with a complete stranger who turns up at just the right moment and offers her a leading role in a Broadway production. Once on board ship, she quickly becomes embroiled in the dramas of a very unlikeable famil The cover design and the title of this book led me to expect a cross between an Agatha Christie novel and a cosy mystery. It tells the story of a young mixed-race woman, a singer/actress ekeing out a living in a seedy nightclub, who gets entangled in a murder and subsequently leaves England with a complete stranger who turns up at just the right moment and offers her a leading role in a Broadway production. Once on board ship, she quickly becomes embroiled in the dramas of a very unlikeable family and more murders are committed quite rapidly. So far, so good. I have no problem suspending belief in the interests of a good story. The era (1930s) is captured very well, no jarring notes and lots of references to world events at the time. However, without revealing any spoilers, the final denouement stretched my credulity just a little too far and it was a very disappointed reader who plodded on to the end of the book. I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

  19. 4 out of 5

    lapetitepritt

    Eh… I really hated everything about this book except one (1) thing. Let’s start from the only good thing, shall we? I liked having a mixed race white passing protagonist in a mystery set in the 1930s, but that’s where it ends. I cannot say anything good about this book. Since they are usually what influences my rating the most, let’s talk about the characters first. The main character, Lena, was so stupid I wanted to scream at her. Literally scream at her to wake up. I don’t care that the book wa Eh… I really hated everything about this book except one (1) thing. Let’s start from the only good thing, shall we? I liked having a mixed race white passing protagonist in a mystery set in the 1930s, but that’s where it ends. I cannot say anything good about this book. Since they are usually what influences my rating the most, let’s talk about the characters first. The main character, Lena, was so stupid I wanted to scream at her. Literally scream at her to wake up. I don’t care that the book was set in the 1930s, she had a kind of life up untile the point where the book starts that you’d think she would know how to use her brain. Apparently not, and it was so damn frustrating reading from her point of view. Especially since it was obvious she shouldn’t have trusted some people she barely knew. All the other characters were mostly useless and one dimensional, beside their name and like one characteristic each, they didn’t have anything that helped you make them apart. The villains — if you could call them villains — were laughable. Both the mystery on land that the one at sea were so boring and obvious, and the characters did not help make them interesting at all. Speaking of which, this book is almost 400 pages long at it has multiple “mysteries” to solve, but really… Nothing happens for most of it. We are just following the dumbest woman ever wandering on a cruise ship asking herself “Who could it be?” and not seeing the plain truth. The pacing is also wrong, I don’t know what the editor was thinking when they said yes, this is good, no need to change anything. Really, I had to read multiple useless description of what the MC was eating and drinking or how she was dressed and the character + mystery building were practically non-existent. I understand it’s historical fiction and probably the author wanted to set the tone, but it was too much tone and too little actual substance. Moreover, it was clear she was trying to emulate Miss Agatha Christie, and she also mentioned her novels once or twice, but I really believe she did not accomplish the goal. I also think this book does not add anything to the mystery genre in general, but maybe I am being to harsh. I don’t know, it was just a huge disappointment… To make things worse, I think the setting was completely underused. I usually love mysteries set on cruise ships or trains, because they have the feeling of a locked-room mystery, but with a little more scope for the investigation. Some of my all times favourite mysteries are set on ships or trains and Agatha Christie herself was a master at writing them. There’s a long tradition of this subgenre of mystery and Miss Aldridge Regrets was just not it. To think of all the things the author could have done with a setting such as the RMS Queen Mary, it makes me keen on picking up a pen and rewriting the whole book. If all this wasn’t enough, the writing style was also boring. Aside from the useless descriptions mentioned above, the dialogues were cringy and 100% unbelievable. There’s one particular scene — I cannot say much, because it’s spoiler — where a character tells something huge to our dear Lena and the whole thing is so badly written I actually had to stop and send a rant audio to Vitt, because it was so dumb. I hated it. You’d think I had finished, but no. There are three more things which I found extremely annoying: the first one is that the two main mysteries were linked, but the link was once again so dumb and unbelievable it made me roll my eyes; the second one is also due to this fact and it’s that the motive of the murderer was stupid and not well explained at all. The third and last one is that there was a romance subplot that didn’t add anything to the main plot, and was also instalove-y. Did we need it? I think not. So, please avoid this book. It’s not problematic per se (even if there was a bit of slut shaming in my opinion; I know it was set in the 1930s, but some comments could be avoided), but I believe it’s not worth your time. Don’t be fooled by the cover, don’t make my same mistake, and skip on this one. There are plenty of better titles to read, as far as I am concerned, and it’s not fundamental that you read this one. If you want a good mystery set on a ship, do yourself a favour and read Death on the Nile by Agatha Christie. I received an e-ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review via Netgalley; this does not affect my rating nor my opinions in any way. Everything you’ll find in this review is what I actually think and it wasn’t influenced by anyone. Thank you so much to the publisher and Netgalley for the chance to read and review this book!

  20. 4 out of 5

    Miriam Smith (A Mother’s Musings)

    “Miss Aldridge Regrets” is the second book by author Louise Hare after her success with “This Lovely City” and is a pleasing mash-up of ‘Titanic’, ‘Death on the Nile’ and Agatha Christie locked-room style vibes. - The glittering RMS Queen Mary. A nightclub singer on the run. An aristocratic family with secrets worth killing for. London, 1936. Lena Aldridge is a mixed race singer at the seedy Canary Club in Soho. When Tommy Scarsdale, the club’s owner suddenly dies in front of her while she’s on “Miss Aldridge Regrets” is the second book by author Louise Hare after her success with “This Lovely City” and is a pleasing mash-up of ‘Titanic’, ‘Death on the Nile’ and Agatha Christie locked-room style vibes. - The glittering RMS Queen Mary. A nightclub singer on the run. An aristocratic family with secrets worth killing for. London, 1936. Lena Aldridge is a mixed race singer at the seedy Canary Club in Soho. When Tommy Scarsdale, the club’s owner suddenly dies in front of her while she’s on stage, she accepts the offer of a Broadway role from a stranger, acting on behalf of a theatre owner in New York. With a first class ticket on the Queen Mary and the promise of a glittering starring role, Lena escapes England and the suspicions surrounding Tommy’s death. Being a mixed race girl trying to pass for white, she hopes she will be accepted easier in New York than London who is unforgiving of her true racial heritage. It’s not long before Lena and Charlie, the agent responsible for her new job, mingle with the wealthy and sophisticated passengers on board. Becoming friends with the prominent Abernathy family, uber rich but obviously dysfunctional, she’s stunned when there’s a death suddenly one night at dinner, in exactly the same manner as Tommy. Can this be a coincidence? Or is someone trying to tell her that they know about her recent past? I loved the time setting - it’s one of my favourites - and the characterisation of all the unique cast was superbly portrayed. Told in dual timelines, the events leading to Lena leaving London and the current timeline on board the Queen Mary, this gave the reader an insight into Lena’s emotions and perceptions surrounding Tommy’s death, the husband of her best friend Maggie. The author also delicately included the issues of class divide, racism, politics and the rise of Nazism pertaining to the era but on a lighter note, there was foot tapping jazz music and a lovely romance to follow. I was very much caught out by the unmasking of the murderer/culprit. It really was quite the revelation and the intermittent quick chapters from their point of view added to the intrigue. I liked how the whole plot read like a typical Agatha Christie mystery but without the obligatory unique detective nosying about in the characters lives. This book would make a fantastic movie, all the characters are genuinely well developed and I could see many a big name actor/actress happily take on the main roles. This was a very enjoyable read that transported me instantly to the atmospheric 1930’s and a beautiful but fateful journey to New York. #MissAldridgeRegrets - 4.5 stars Thank you to BloggerHQ and Alliya for inviting on the #BookTour for Miss Aldridge Regrets and for my gorgeous copy of the book in return for an honest review.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Lauren

    It’s 1936 and Lena Aldridge is a bi-racial singer in a seedy club in SoHo. During one of her performances, the club’s gangster owner Tommy Scarsdale (who happens to be her best friend’s neglectful husband) dies right in front of her, killed with a hit of cyanide in his drink. Flash forward a few weeks and Lena is aboard the Queen Mary, a luxury liner making its way across the Atlantic from London to New York. She’s travelling in style in first class thanks to Charlie Bacon, who’s escorting her t It’s 1936 and Lena Aldridge is a bi-racial singer in a seedy club in SoHo. During one of her performances, the club’s gangster owner Tommy Scarsdale (who happens to be her best friend’s neglectful husband) dies right in front of her, killed with a hit of cyanide in his drink. Flash forward a few weeks and Lena is aboard the Queen Mary, a luxury liner making its way across the Atlantic from London to New York. She’s travelling in style in first class thanks to Charlie Bacon, who’s escorting her to the big apple with the promise of a Broadway role that’s waiting for her there. Once aboard she meets the wealthy Abernathy family, and quickly becomes embroiled in their dinners and drinks, until one of their party dies at dinner in a remarkably similar fashion to Tommy.. Has tragedy followed Lena on to the ship? Who is behind these murders? And who will be the next victim? I absolutely loved the overall vibe of this book, it reminded me very much of Agatha Christie, particularly Death on the Nile but without Poirot. And what could be better than a murder mystery aboard a boat where there’s no escape? It works for a reason and I was hooked throughout, it’s so tense! Like Christie there’s a cast of characters, all with some motive or other, so you’re never sure who to trust or who’s at risk. I didn’t guess the overall ‘villain’ so that was a pleasant surprise! Louise Hare writes historical fiction (with a musical edge) beautifully and always captures the feeling of the period so well. I adored This Lovely City and this is in the same vein but with a bit more glamour thrown in. By switching back and forth in time from chapter to chapter Hare does a great job of juxtaposing Lena’s luxurious life on the ship with her time in Bethnal Green and both are so intriguing. I did prefer the ship scenes I think but the London sections add to the story too. My only criticism is that I’d have liked more to happen at the end, it felt like we jumped from the ship to being in New York and the events aboard the Queen Mary seem to have been papered over. I’d have liked there to have been more to it at that stage, however as it was all tied up so I can’t complain too much and overall I really enjoyed it. Having loved both her books I’m now a Louise Hare fan for life and am already looking forward to the next one! If you enjoy murder mysteries with some social commentary and racial divides thrown in she’s your gal and I would absolutely recommend both Miss Aldridge Regrets and This Lovely City. Thank you to HQ Harper Collins for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Vivienne

    “Anyone could travel on the Queen Mary, they said, and that was true enough as long as you knew the rules. Up here, mingling with the likes of Frankie Abernathy, the air was reserved for the wealthy.” My thanks to HQ for an eARC via NetGalley of ‘Miss Aldridge Regrets’ by Louise Hare in exchange for an honest review. London, 1936 and 26-year-old Lena Aldridge had hoped for a career in the theatre; instead she finds herself singing in a sleazy basement club in Soho. Then she is approached by Charli “Anyone could travel on the Queen Mary, they said, and that was true enough as long as you knew the rules. Up here, mingling with the likes of Frankie Abernathy, the air was reserved for the wealthy.” My thanks to HQ for an eARC via NetGalley of ‘Miss Aldridge Regrets’ by Louise Hare in exchange for an honest review. London, 1936 and 26-year-old Lena Aldridge had hoped for a career in the theatre; instead she finds herself singing in a sleazy basement club in Soho. Then she is approached by Charlie Bacon, an American there on behalf of an old friend of her deceased father. He is offering her the chance of a lifetime: an audition for a starring role on Broadway and a first-class ticket on the Queen Mary bound for New York. The timing is perfect as there has been a murder at the club and Lena is happy to leave England behind. During the voyage there is another challenge for Lena: “Charlie Bacon had told me that Americans could be funny about things like that, that even though segregation wasn’t strictly a concern in New York the way it was further south, it didn’t mean that people would turn a blind eye. To pass, to fit in, was paramount on the voyage itself.“ To cover Lena invents an Italian grandmother yet she’s always on alert, especially with the wealthy passengers that she and Charlie are assigned to share a table with for meals. However, when someone at their table is murdered, Lena becomes caught up in a complex mystery. While Lena serves as the novel’s narrator as readers we are made aware that there is someone else behind the scenes, observing Lena and planning to use her as a scapegoat in their schemes. I always find mysteries set on board cruise ships and ocean liners interesting and here having the iconic Queen Mary as its backdrop added to the atmosphere. In addition, Louise Hare utilises her period setting to explore issues of race, class, and privilege. I will note that there is some usage of racist language by certain characters as well as discussion about the situation in mid-1930s Europe. ‘Miss Aldridge Regrets’ had the feel of a classic Golden Age mystery with a well realised period setting and engaging characters.. I adored Lena - without doubt a woman used to living by her wits yet with a vulnerability. I wanted her dreams to come true. Overall, a satisfying and entertaining historical mystery that incorporates serious themes within its glamorous shipboard setting. On a side note I found the Art Deco cover very appealing.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Becca

    Miss Aldridge Regrets is a gripping, emotionally charged mystery with a set of intriguing characters. The story begins with an insight into the murderer’s thoughts as they are at the club. It is then told in sections, followed by chapters headed with dates and locations. This made it easier to follow and provided more detail on the whereabouts of chapters in advance of reading them. The insights into the murderer’s thoughts continue sporadically throughout the novel and are a reminder of not just Miss Aldridge Regrets is a gripping, emotionally charged mystery with a set of intriguing characters. The story begins with an insight into the murderer’s thoughts as they are at the club. It is then told in sections, followed by chapters headed with dates and locations. This made it easier to follow and provided more detail on the whereabouts of chapters in advance of reading them. The insights into the murderer’s thoughts continue sporadically throughout the novel and are a reminder of not just their presence but also their musings. There are also interspersed flashbacks, providing us with Lena’s pre-voyage goings on. These begin a week prior. I think these gave a lot of extra context and back story. I enjoyed the interest they provided and the fact you rarely knew what to expect. Told via Lena Aldridge’s point of view, we are given the depth of her thoughts and her interesting perspective. She’s a brilliant character and I really felt like I was rooting from her right from the start. There are a number of other highly significant characters within the novel, and I found them all to be absorbing especially their relationships and interwoven web. Their presence really added to the overall (surprise) ending! The mystery element of the novel was enticing and I felt drawn in. I wanted to know the who, what, when, where, why and everything in between. The whole premise of the linear locked-room style was a great premise, and reminded me of Agatha Christie, with the ship element reminding me of the more recent, A Fatal Crossing. There were a number of twists in the story which genuinely surprised me! I didn’t see them coming at all and felt this made them all the more fascinating. I really had no idea where the murders would lead us and it was a great trip alongside Lena to get there! As with Louise Hare’s debut, there are many important topics covering ethnicity and race privileges, as well as accurate and informative historical context.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Nicolle Roxborough

    London, 1936. Lena Aldridge is a singer in a club in Soho owned by her best friend’s husband. When he’s poisoned one night in the club Lena is worried about being caught up in the investigation. Luckily she has a chance to escape England. A stranger offers her a starring role on Broadway and a first class ticket aboard the Queen Mary. But when a fellow passenger is also poisoned, Lena begins to worry that her past has followed her on board. I absolutely loved the setting for this one. The opulence London, 1936. Lena Aldridge is a singer in a club in Soho owned by her best friend’s husband. When he’s poisoned one night in the club Lena is worried about being caught up in the investigation. Luckily she has a chance to escape England. A stranger offers her a starring role on Broadway and a first class ticket aboard the Queen Mary. But when a fellow passenger is also poisoned, Lena begins to worry that her past has followed her on board. I absolutely loved the setting for this one. The opulence of the ship and the descriptions of the clothes and the food were all written about with such detail that the world really came alive. I also love a locked room mystery and there was a whiff of Agatha Christie about the whole thing. The dual timeline was done effectively, juxtaposing the splendour of the Queen Mary with the squalor of her life in London. And the two threads of the story came together well. I felt the sections with the killer didn’t really need to be in there as I don’t think they added anything to the story except perhaps giving you a few clues as to whodunnit. I liked Lena as a character but felt she lacked agency and was a little too trusting of strangers. She didn’t actively try to find out who the killer was, she mostly just reacted to things and sometimes in a frustrating manner. The rest of the cast of characters didn’t feel as developed as they could have been and were all quite one dimensional, the stereotypical rich family with hidden secrets. I worked out who the killer was quite early on so the big reveal at the end didn’t surprise me. Admittedly this might have affected my enjoyment of the novel but overall I still found it to be a fun and cosy read. Thank you to netgalley and the publishers for a copy of this book.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Anika | Chapters of May

    This cosy mystery set aboard the Queen Mary follows Lena Aldridge as she chases her big break on Broadway, leaving behind a dubious murder in London. But then another crime occurs as Lena mingles with the affluent and wealthy, and soon she realises she may be facing more trouble ahead that the trouble she left behind. In Hare’s debut, This Lovely City, I really appreciated the way she entwined a murder mystery narrative with honest truths surrounding prejudices in society. And it’s the same with This cosy mystery set aboard the Queen Mary follows Lena Aldridge as she chases her big break on Broadway, leaving behind a dubious murder in London. But then another crime occurs as Lena mingles with the affluent and wealthy, and soon she realises she may be facing more trouble ahead that the trouble she left behind. In Hare’s debut, This Lovely City, I really appreciated the way she entwined a murder mystery narrative with honest truths surrounding prejudices in society. And it’s the same with Miss Aldridge Regrets. Lena is a mixed-race woman, but white passing, and it was interesting to see how the author illustrated this in the face of 1930’s racism, classism, and other prejudices that are so prominent. It’s realistic but still provides the reader with an escape to another world. Sadly, I found the plot of Miss Aldridge Regrets to drag in some places, and occasionally felt like skipping scenes in search of some excitement. And while the atmosphere feels authentic, the twists in the plot do not, which dampened my enthusiasm for the mystery. Nevertheless, I found the personalities of the characters to be memorable and enjoyed my time on the ocean liner. With dual timelines, an intriguing contrast between the character backgrounds, and pleasant writing, Miss Aldridge Regrets is an ideal pick for Agatha Christie and cosy mystery fans.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Janet

    3.5 Stars London, 1936 Lena Aldridge is wondering if life has passed her by. The dazzling theatre career she hoped for hasn’t worked out. Instead, she’s stuck singing in a sticky-floored basement club in Soho and her married lover has just left her. She has nothing to look forward to until a stranger offers her the chance of a lifetime: a starring role on Broadway and a first-class ticket on the Queen Mary bound for New York. After a murder at the club, the timing couldn’t be better and Lena jump 3.5 Stars London, 1936 Lena Aldridge is wondering if life has passed her by. The dazzling theatre career she hoped for hasn’t worked out. Instead, she’s stuck singing in a sticky-floored basement club in Soho and her married lover has just left her. She has nothing to look forward to until a stranger offers her the chance of a lifetime: a starring role on Broadway and a first-class ticket on the Queen Mary bound for New York. After a murder at the club, the timing couldn’t be better and Lena jumps at the chance to escape England. Until death follows her onto the ship and she realises that her greatest performance has already begun. A new author to me & I enjoyed this book. It takes place over two timeframes with a couple of weeks apart so there were flashbacks. The characters are well portrayed & had depth. I did find that the book lagged at times but overall it was well paced. There were some twists & turns & I was left guessing as to who the villain was. I did love the descriptions of the time on the Queen Mary & the differences between the luxury upper decks & the conditions below decks. An interesting read & I’ll certainly read more from the author My honest review is for a special copy I voluntarily read

  27. 4 out of 5

    Dabarai

    I was a massive fan of Louise Hare’s debut novel, and I was eagerly awaiting a new book by her! I was not disappointed. Lena Aldridge is waiting for her chances for a big break on New York’s Broadway, far away from the seedy nightclub in London where she sings every night. She is also escaping some unpleasant events, mainly the death of the owner of the club, who happens to be her best friend’s husband. She is offered a first-class ticket on the Queen Mary, where she has a chance to mingle with I was a massive fan of Louise Hare’s debut novel, and I was eagerly awaiting a new book by her! I was not disappointed. Lena Aldridge is waiting for her chances for a big break on New York’s Broadway, far away from the seedy nightclub in London where she sings every night. She is also escaping some unpleasant events, mainly the death of the owner of the club, who happens to be her best friend’s husband. She is offered a first-class ticket on the Queen Mary, where she has a chance to mingle with the rich, who can help her career. But then a murder is committed on the ship, and this can jeopardise her future. The story follows two timelines, and the author also discusses themes of racism, prejudice and class as well as the situation of women in 1930s. Lena is a mixed-race woman, raised by her Black musician father, so she knows she must fit not only into the world of rich and influential people, but also into world that treats Black people as a second-class citizens. She can pass as a white woman, but her situation is precarious, and depends on her concealing her true self. With a wide cast of characters and glitzy setting, “Miss Aldridge Regrets” is a fun and engaging locked room mystery. I enjoyed trying to guess who the culprit was, and although I managed to guess some twists, the ending was a surprise to me. There might be some unbelievable moments, but I was to draw into the book to care. I am already looking forward to another instalment of Lena’s adventures, and I am off to look for some more good old-fashioned crime novels.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Kitty McIntosh

    ’Miss Aldridge Regrets’ by Louise Hare is perfect for fans of the Golden Age mystery novels of Agatha Christie and the like. Lena jumps at the chance to sail off to New York when a fantastic job offer comes her way. Working in a basement jazz club was never the plan, but a murder in the cub makes her desire to get out of London all the more urgent. Once on board the Queen Mary she is pushed into spending time with a rich and influential family. Danger lurks around every corner, even if Lena does ’Miss Aldridge Regrets’ by Louise Hare is perfect for fans of the Golden Age mystery novels of Agatha Christie and the like. Lena jumps at the chance to sail off to New York when a fantastic job offer comes her way. Working in a basement jazz club was never the plan, but a murder in the cub makes her desire to get out of London all the more urgent. Once on board the Queen Mary she is pushed into spending time with a rich and influential family. Danger lurks around every corner, even if Lena doesn’t realise it. A mystery unravels as they cross the Atlantic - and someone is intent on causing mayhem. The story had the best setting. A murder mystery aboard an ocean liner is always going to get my vote. The mystery was well done, and the author brought in class and race issues that made it feel real. Her female characters were interesting and their lives drove the story for me. I enjoyed it. I was given this ARC for review.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Zarina

    Full review on my blog: http://www.pagetostagereviews.com/202... I love a good Agatha Christie-esque whodunnit. From the set-up introducing the location, cast of characters, and their complicated relationships, through to the deceit happening under the surface, providing the perfect misdirections to conceal the murderer just long enough to put the protagonist in mortal danger and the reader on the edge of their seat. It's a formula that has stand the test of time, and for good reason. It makes fo Full review on my blog: http://www.pagetostagereviews.com/202... I love a good Agatha Christie-esque whodunnit. From the set-up introducing the location, cast of characters, and their complicated relationships, through to the deceit happening under the surface, providing the perfect misdirections to conceal the murderer just long enough to put the protagonist in mortal danger and the reader on the edge of their seat. It's a formula that has stand the test of time, and for good reason. It makes for a hugely entertaining and gripping reading experience. And in Miss Aldridge Regrets, author Louise Hare has perfected the balance between teasing her audience with real revelations and red herrings; the flashback sequences adding an extra intriguing layer to the mystery at hand. And there was a secondary storyline that made this particular novel stand out from its peers. Protagonist Lena's father was black and while she says that she is white passing, she struggles with her identity. She feels like she doesn't quite belong with the people in cabin class, yet she's also out of place when she befriends a black musician further down in the ship. This adds a really interesting layer to her character and it is eye-opening for a contemporary audience. Particularly because this wasn't an issue for Lena in 1930's Soho in London, but her new friend warns her that New York society is still much more segregated. Miss Aldridge Regrets pays tribute to the classic whodunnit, but with its own twist. This isn't just a murder mystery with almost unanimously despicable characters surrounding the protagonist. Louise Hare also shines a spotlight on the limitations and prejudices of the time period her novel is set in; it's not just glitter and glamour. This creates a much richer backdrop, elevating the book from a fast-paced yet surface-level detective story to something more nuanced and complex. This isn't only an entertaining page-turner (although it's certainly hugely enjoyable), but it will also make the reader think. And those are the best kind of stories.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Carolyn

    Lena Aldridge has never had an easy life. She was brought up by a single father and spent much of her childhood playing backstage while her father played piano at bars and nightclubs in Britain. She was happy because she always knew he loved her. She followed in his footsteps singing in many of those same clubs, never able to make it into the "big time" she kept reaching for. When Charlie, a stranger, offers her a miracle chance to sing and act in an American play on Broadway, she's hesitant at Lena Aldridge has never had an easy life. She was brought up by a single father and spent much of her childhood playing backstage while her father played piano at bars and nightclubs in Britain. She was happy because she always knew he loved her. She followed in his footsteps singing in many of those same clubs, never able to make it into the "big time" she kept reaching for. When Charlie, a stranger, offers her a miracle chance to sing and act in an American play on Broadway, she's hesitant at first. Then she loses her job and her rented room in the same night and has no choice. On the luxury ocean liner on the way to New York, Charlie urges her to make friends and try to impress the super rich, dysfunctional, Abernathy family. A twisty mystery with a satisfying ending.

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