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City of Masks (Somershill Manor, 3) de S. D.…
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City of Masks (Somershill Manor, 3) (edição: 2017)

de S. D. Sykes (Autor)

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557474,248 (3.61)4
Its 1358, and young Oswald de Lacy, Lord Somershill, is delayed in Venice as he awaits a pilgrim ship to the Holy Land. While the city is besieged by the King of Hungary, Oswald stays at the house of an English merchant, and soon comes under the spell of this decadent and dazzling island state that sits on the edge of Europewhere East meets West. But Oswald has secrets. He is running away from something in Englanda shadow that still haunts him, no matter how much he consoles himself with the delights of Venice. When he finds a dead man at the carnival, he is dragged into a murder investigation that draws him deep into the intrigues of this paranoid, mysterious city. From the dungeons of the Doges Palace to the convent-brothel of Santa Lucia, Oswald must search for a murderer in this bewildering maze of alleys and canals. When he comes up against the feared Signori di Notte, the secret police, Oswald learns that he is not the only one with something to hide. Everyone is watching (or trailing) someone else; and nobody in Venice is who they appear to be. Masks, it seems, are not only for the carnival.… (mais)
Membro:Caralen
Título:City of Masks (Somershill Manor, 3)
Autores:S. D. Sykes (Autor)
Informação:New York : Pegasus Crime, 2017.
Coleções:Lidos mas não possuídos
Avaliação:***
Etiquetas:read-adult-fiction

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City of Masks de S D Sykes

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Mostrando 1-5 de 6 (seguinte | mostrar todas)
Love Venice but I did have trouble following the story, particularly when in the middle of the tale, the personal life of Oswald is told == but since this is book #3 maybe it’s that I missed info from the first two ( )
  VictoriaJZ | Dec 11, 2022 |
I really enjoy S. D. Sykes' historical series. Oswald is a younger son who was destined for a life in the monastery, but when the Black Death killed his father and older brothers, he found himself Lord of Somershill Manor. Life in a religious order doesn't necessarily condition a person for running an estate, so Oswald has been on a learning curve that's interesting to watch. In City of Masks, ten years have passed, and while Oswald tries to conduct an investigation, readers slowly learn what happened in England to chase him away from his home.

Oswald is an interesting blend of intelligence and naivete. Growing up in the monastery has made him wise in several things ordinary people don't know, yet woefully ignorant in things those same ordinary people take for granted. His mother is a woman of her times who also manages to be thoroughly obnoxious with very little effort, but Sykes gives her some backstory so she's not just a two-dimensional stereotype.

The mystery in City of Masks kept me guessing, but as much as I enjoyed the story and the characters, it was Venice that was the shining star for me. Sykes brought this dazzling city to life in all its glory and filth-- and traveling to those outlying islands wasn't a picnic either. As I read, I felt as though I were in Venice with Oswald in 1358, and that's the best sort of armchair travel a reader can ask for.

If you enjoy historical mysteries with a vivid sense of place, strong stories, and interesting characters, I recommend S.D. Syke's Somershill Manor mysteries. To understand Oswald as much as possible, it would be a good idea to start at the beginning with Plague Land and The Butcher Bird but you could read City of Masks without feeling lost at all. It's up to you! ( )
  cathyskye | Jul 11, 2019 |
City of Masks is S. D. Sykes' 3rd Somershill Manor Mystery novel. This novel does not take place in England as the first two books in the series did but rather takes place in Venice in 1358.

The story opens with a Prologue where the main character, Oswald de Lacy, finds the dead body of the grandson of his Venetian host, John Bearpark, an English ex-pat in Venice. In the next 40 pages not much happens as de Lacy and his mother socialize with their host John Bearpark and his guests. Here de Lacy is coerced into nights of drinking and gambling with grandson Enrico and his friends, spending time with boring religious pilgrims Bernard and Margery Jagger, secretly staring at Bearpark's non-speaking young wife Filomena and dealing with the staff at Casa Bearpark. It is after these 40 pages that the body of the grandson, Enrico, is found and the story continues with de Lacy being asked to investigate Enrico's death.

The excitement in the book begins with de Lacy's investigation but the author interspersed a few chapters about de Lacy's past from the earlier books in the series. These chapters had no bearing on the plot and I don't know why they were added. De Lacy gets his first clue from his host who tells him that Enrico sexually preferred men over women. This confused de Lacy as Enrico had tried to get him to go to brothels with him. However, he trusted his gut and began the investigation with the home's security guard who was not on duty the night of the murder and has since disappeared.

The author displayed her knowledge of medieval Venice in this novel. She portrayed the history of Venice at a time when it was at war with Hungary and how it affected commerce as well as everyday life for Venetians. The political powerhouses of the day were also depicted in realistic terms with their ability to put to death homosexuals based upon only an accusation, deciding which families could use the best ships for transport of goods and people and deciding what crimes were worthy of investigation.

I feel that the setting should have stayed in England. This installment of the series was not as exciting as the earlier two, Plague Land and The Butcher Bird. De Lacy's sleuthing skills were hampered by being in a foreign country. He not only was unfamilar with the physical layout of Venice but he did not understand the culture of the city and its people. Part of what made his sleuthing skills superior in his homeland was his understanding of how his own people's minds worked. Also, it is difficult to view this as a Somershill Manor mystery when the events taking place are not at Somershill Manor.

I rate this book 3 out of 5 stars. ( )
  Violette62 | Apr 9, 2018 |
This novel sits well in the category of historical murder mysteries. Its setting is Venice, 1358, after the Black Death, and during a war with Hungary which delays the progress of a young Englishman and his mother to Jerusalem on a pilgrimage. They are the paying guests of a wealthy merchant, whose grandson Enrico is the murder victim. Oswald de Lacy, the young Englishman in question, has his own worries, but attempting to solve the murder - for a fee - might alleviate some of these. He is the narrator of the tale. which is well told, with interesting background detail, and further complexities and mysteries, increasing the danger. The narrative is well-handled, drawing the reader in with the surprises of the ending.
This is actually the third in a series, but read well as a stand-alone. I will seek out the earlier instalments. ( )
  Jawin | Dec 29, 2017 |
After a tragedy in England Oswald de Lacy is haunted and has set off on a pilgrimage to Jerusalem. However he has got no further than Venice as the city is besieged by the Hungarians and no ships are sailing. Lodging with an English merchant known to his mother, Oswald indulges in the hedonistic side of Venetian life and finds himself in debt. Then the grandson of his landlord is found murdered and Oswald is forced to investigate, partially for money, partially because his mother is crowing about his skills and partially because he cares for the wife of the house.

This is the third outing for Sykes' reluctant medieval sleuth and the setting has changed from Kent to Venice. This is a welcome diversion as it places characters in greater proximity to each other in the city setting. Sykes' research and ability to conjure up that elusive sense of time and place are excellent as ever. I particularly liked the psychological issues that de Lacy was undergoing and the fact that they were not explained until deep into the book. this is solid and entertaining series of books. ( )
  pluckedhighbrow | Aug 15, 2017 |
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Its 1358, and young Oswald de Lacy, Lord Somershill, is delayed in Venice as he awaits a pilgrim ship to the Holy Land. While the city is besieged by the King of Hungary, Oswald stays at the house of an English merchant, and soon comes under the spell of this decadent and dazzling island state that sits on the edge of Europewhere East meets West. But Oswald has secrets. He is running away from something in Englanda shadow that still haunts him, no matter how much he consoles himself with the delights of Venice. When he finds a dead man at the carnival, he is dragged into a murder investigation that draws him deep into the intrigues of this paranoid, mysterious city. From the dungeons of the Doges Palace to the convent-brothel of Santa Lucia, Oswald must search for a murderer in this bewildering maze of alleys and canals. When he comes up against the feared Signori di Notte, the secret police, Oswald learns that he is not the only one with something to hide. Everyone is watching (or trailing) someone else; and nobody in Venice is who they appear to be. Masks, it seems, are not only for the carnival.

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