Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Dying By The Sword - Sarah D'Almeida


Dying By The Sword
A Musketeers MysterySarah D’Almeida
Berkley Prime Crime

Mystery/Historical

Being a musketeer is tough on a sword, so when Porthos’ is damaged, he sends his servant, Mousqueton, to the armorer’s for repairs. When Porthos, along with his inseparable friends, Aramis, Athos, and D’Artagnan, arrive in the street outside the armorer’s, they find a mob scene, literally. The armorer is dead, run through by a sword. Quite conveniently, Mousqueton is found, unconscious, with a sword in his hand. Since Mousqueton has not been above the odd bit of petty larceny in the past, he’s instantly blamed and taken to the Bastille.

The four immediately seek counsel with Monsieur de Treville, the captain of the musketeers. The four are convinced that the whole thing is a frame. Monsieur de Treville agrees, and gives them the bad news. It seems that Cardinal Richlieu, enemy of these musketeers is convinced that there’s a plot to kill him, and possibly the King of France. He believes that plot involves the Queen, and, given the musketeer’s friendly status with the Queen, Richlieu essentially took poor Mousqueton hostage, to use as leverage. The four realize that the only way to clear the servant of the charges and gain his freedom is to locate the real murderer.

You don’t have to have read or enjoyed Dumas’ original novel to appreciate this historical series (see list below.) If you have read it, though, you’ll find much to enjoy here. The author does a wonderful job of expanding on each of the characters, and giving them new adventures and mysteries to solve. The books are written very much in the style of Dumas, adding more historical flavor. The details of Paris, from the grubbiest street to the musketeers’ rooms, to the Palace, are amazingly detailed. This detail adds to the realism, but never slows down the story. This outstanding series is a must-read for anyone who enjoys historical fiction.

Rating: 8
December 2008
ISBN# 978-0-425-22461-8 (paperback)

Previous books in this series, and not to be missed:

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