Monday, June 22, 2020

Sophia Rose Reviews In Farleigh Field by Rhys Bowen Narrated by Gemma Dawson

Today features Sophia Rose and her review of the audible version of In Farleigh Field by Rhys Bowen Narrated by Gemma Dawson.

In Farleigh Field by Rhys Bowen, Narrated by Gemma Dawson

Historical Mystery

Publisher:  Audible Studios

Published:  3.1.17


Time:  11 hours 44 minutes

Rating: 4

Narrator Rating: 4

Format:  Audible

Source:  Purchased

Sellers:  AmazonBarnes & Noble

Add To: GoodReads   

GoodReads Blurb:

World War II comes to Farleigh Place, the ancestral home of Lord Westerham and his five daughters, when a soldier with a failed parachute falls to his death on the estate. After his uniform and possessions raise suspicions, MI5 operative and family friend Ben Cresswell is covertly tasked with determining if the man is a German spy. The assignment also offers Ben the chance to be near Lord Westerham’s middle daughter, Pamela, whom he furtively loves. But Pamela has her own secret: she has taken a job at Bletchley Park, the British code-breaking facility.

As Ben follows a trail of spies and traitors, which may include another member of Pamela’s family, he discovers that some within the realm have an appalling, history-altering agenda. Can he, with Pamela’s help, stop them before England falls?

Inspired by the events and people of World War II, writer Rhys Bowen crafts a sweeping and riveting saga of class, family, love, and betrayal.


Sophia Rose's Review:

A historical suspense set in WWII Britain and Paris was just the nudge I needed to finally pick up this standalone book from an author I've been meaning to try for ages.  It was a multi-faceted piece of cozy country village, intense Paris intrigue, glitzy war-torn London and spies, and a subtle swirling danger that leaped into action for a splendid finish.


In Farleigh Field introduces an engaging cast of characters and an expansive espionage plot set during the WWII era.  It is a combo of Town and Country since the action is mostly split between London and the environs of the Farleigh Place estate and village.  The historical backdrop included the variety of important WWII settings that were painted well so that I could tell the author did her homework getting details right so I could see it all so clearly.  The author took the story through the MI-5 espionage workings, Bletchley Park codebreakers, occupied Paris and British commandos, and life on the home front at war.


The book has a good steady pace as it builds to the end when the reveals come, but there are some exciting and intense moments when Lady Margo narrates from Paris where her lover is taken as a French Resistance operator and she is grabbed by the Germans as well.  There are fun moments to counter-act those scenes when young Lady Phoebe decides to play detective and figure out the mystery of the body in her family's field.  I figured out who was the traitor and what they were doing fairly early on, but this didn't take away from my enjoyment of the book.


And, beyond the suspense elements, there are romance elements.  They are mostly background which works well with this sort of story.  When I say background, I mean that Ben has thoughts about the person he loves and how he handles unrequited feelings and Pamela figuring out the difference between youthful crushes and what she wants as an adult.  Some of the secondary characters have relationship situations that are on their mind, too.  Like I said, it was all low key compared to the suspense part.


The narrator, Gemma Dawson, is new to me.  I enjoyed her narration work and the voices she used to distinguish the large cast and multiple points of view.  She did especially well with men's voices of all ages and did great on the children's voices as well.  I thought her narration brought out the subtle comical elements like Lord Westernham and the graver moments with Margo and the accented German voices.  I'll definitely watch for more of her work.


So, all in all, I was well-pleased by my first Rhys Bowen book and I can heartily recommend this to those who want a moderately light WWII historical suspense.


Author’s Bio:

"I'm a New York Times bestselling mystery author, winner of both Agatha and Anthony awards for my Molly Murphy mysteries, set in 1902 New York City.

I have recently published two internationally bestselling WWII novels, one of them a #1 Kindle bestseller, the other selling almost half a million copies to date.

I also write the Agatha-winning Royal Spyness series, about the British royal family in the 1930s. It's lighter, sexier, funnier, wicked satire. It was voted by readers as best mystery series one year.
I am also known for my Constable Evans books, set in North Wales, and for my award-winning short stories. "

I was born and raised in England but currently divide my time between California and Arizona where I go to escape from the harsh California winters
When I am not writing I love to travel, sing, hike, play my Celtic harp.
* Constable Evan Mystery
* Molly Murphy Mysteries
* Her Royal Spyness Mysteries



Sophia’s Bio:

Sophia is a quiet though curious gal who dabbles in cooking, book reviewing, and gardening. Encouraged and supported by an incredible man and loving family. A Northern Californian transplant to the Great Lakes Region of the US. Lover of Jane Austen, Baseball, Cats, Scooby Doo, and Chocolate.

Sophia’s Social Media Links:







  1. Love when you take a chance and it pays off!
    I do love this era, I will have to look into this more.

    1. Yes, exactly! I've see her books all over and was satisfied that my anticipation was worth it.

      I love the era, too. It can get desperate and deeply emotional. :) Hope you like it when you get the chance.

  2. This is in my audible library Sophia Rose now it's a bit higher on the list. Thanks for the great review

  3. This sounds good and I like that the romance isn't center but added to the overall tale. Great review!

    1. It is a nice break from my usual full-on romances. I will definitely getting to more of her books.

  4. I haven't tried Bowen...I think

    1. This was my first, but definitely not my last. :)

  5. I have heard about the author, but I never read any of her work. This sounds good. Great review.

    1. Thanks, Nadene! I had heard of her too and I'm so glad I finally picked up one of her books. I'll definitely be going back for more.