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Jane and the Stillroom Maid: Being the Fifth…
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Jane and the Stillroom Maid: Being the Fifth Jane Austen Mystery (Being A… (edition 2001)

by Stephanie Barron (Author)

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497637,867 (3.82)10
While out on a walk in the hills during a visit to her relatives in Derbyshire, Jane finds a terribly mutilated body. It turns out to be Tess Arnold, a stillroom maid at a local estate known for her skill as an herbalist. Was Tess suspected of witchcraft? Was she thought to be traitor to the secret rites of the Freemasons? What was her relationship with the Duke's family. Was the killing the work of a madman? When the wrong person is accused of murder, Jane Austen becomes an innocent victim's only hope in a fiendishly clever and breathlessly diverting mystery.… (more)
Member:PaulSavidge
Title:Jane and the Stillroom Maid: Being the Fifth Jane Austen Mystery (Being A Jane Austen Mystery)
Authors:Stephanie Barron (Author)
Info:Bantam (2001), Edition: 17340th, 336 pages
Collections:Your library
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Jane and the Stillroom Maid by Stephanie Barron

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Showing 1-5 of 6 (next | show all)
in the mail! signed hc by Stephanie {thankyou!}
this mystery now heading out on holiday with me ") ( )
  FHC | Jun 13, 2013 |
Ms. Barron has done a very nice job of capturing the "voice"of Austen's period. Unfortunately, that tends to make the book, as a mystery, a bit too convoluted and slow-moving for an entirely happy reader. I would recommend the book to those who are passionately devoited to all things Austen; perhaps not to a mystery fan who wasn't so enthralled with Austen. ( )
  turtlesleap | Apr 10, 2013 |
An interesting premise that Jane Austen was capable of solving mysteries as well as writing good books. Stephanie Barron does a good job in bringing out this unknown aspect of Jane Austen's life. ( )
  IllanoyGal | Jun 28, 2010 |
This installment finds Jane admitting to herself the depth of her feeling for Lord Trowbridge. Nice! The murder was particularly disturbing because it was revealed to be the tip of the iceberg in terms of corruption of soul. There was the interesting aspect of the various remedies that were sprinkled about the book - a new facet of the world of Jane Austen. ( )
  tjsjohanna | Apr 5, 2009 |
Regency mystery, with fewer historical distractions
July 2001

Barron's fictional Jane continues her surprisingly dangerous career by stumbling upon a particularly grisly corpse -- a young man, she thinks, shot in the head and eviscerated. As it comes out that the deceased was a stillroom maid, in charge of remedies and preserves, and a vicious rumor implicating the Freemasons spreads throughout the village, Jane once again becomes enmeshed with a murder investigation. There are plenty of false leads to follow, plenty of scandals to uncover, and all in the company of Lord Harold Trowbridge, who is in Derbyshire to pay a visit of morning for the Duchess of Devonshire.

Of the Jane Austen Mystery series so far, this is the one most distilled - fewer side issues for Jane to consider, fewer forays into the politics and the culture of the day. There is, of course, the aristocratic name-dropping; we are treated to the leading people of the Whig movement in Parliament. Also, there is a small mention of Freemasonry, but it passes quickly. The chapters are interspersed with recipes for folk remedies, in sure opposition to the "more modern" apothecary and doctor, who prefer their bleeding cures to tinctures and poultices (Warning: do not try these remedies at home. Stick to our "modern" remedies of St. John's Wort and saw palmetto). However, there are far fewer footnotes in this book than the previous novels and far fewer reveries on Jane's part. Barron seems to have decided to make this a murder mystery, with few distracting elements. Once again, an enjoyable read, like the rest of the series, but no tedious bits as some of the previous novels suffered from. ( )
  meepbobeep | Mar 8, 2009 |
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Epigraph
(From Jane and the Stillroom Maid p 13)

For the Stauching
of a Wound, Where There
Be Great Blood


If the wound be deep or a great vein cut,
take a piece of lean salt beef and lay it
in hot ashes until heated through. Then
press the hot stuff entirely into the wound
and bind with clean linen. A good piece of
roasted beef, heated on the coals, will serve
as well.

-From the Stillroom Book
of Tess Arnold
Penfolds Hall, Derbyshire,
1802-1806
(From Jane and the Stillroom Maid p 24)

Dr. Babscomb's Water
to Strengthen a
Woman after Travel


Steep equal pats pomegranate buds,
oak bark and rose leaves in boiling
spring water until very strong. Then add to
each pint of the tea a quarter-pint of red
wine. Dip clean cotton in the posset and
apply hot to the Sufferer's forehead, or any-
where on the body that is pained. Applica-
tions in evening are most beneficial.

-From the Stillroom Book
of Tess Arnold,
Penfolds Hall, Derbyshire,
1802-1806
(From Jane and the Stillroom Maid p 33)

Against Disorders
of the Head


Chop two ounces of wild Valerian Root,
and add to it an ounce of freshly-
gathered Sage. Pour over two quarts of boil-
ing water, and give the Sufferer a quar-
her of a pint, twice each day.
    This is most useful against Giddiness and
Pains, and all disorders of the Head, espe-
cially Nervous Cases.

-From the Stillroom Book
of Tess Arnold,
Penfolds Hall, Derbyshire,
1802-1806
(From Jane and the Stillroom Maid p 50)

To Find if a Body
Be Dead or Not


Stick a needle an inch or so into the cor-
pus. If it is alive, the needle will become
tarnished whilst in the truly dead the nee-
del will retain its polish.

-From the Stillroom Book
of Tess Arnold,
Penfolds Hall, Derbyshire,
1802-1806
Dedication
Dedicated to Carol Bauer Bowron, friend and writer,
who carries a certain Pemberley in her heart
First words
Mr. Edward Cooper--rector of Hamstall Ridware, Staffordshire, Fellow of All Souls, devoted supplicant before his noble patron, Sir George Mumps, and my first cousin--is possessed of a taste for hymns.
Quotations
(From Jane and the Stillroom Maid p 9)

"Hear us, oh hear us Lord; to thee
A sinner is more music, when he prays
Than sphere, or angels' praises be
In panegyric alleluiaaaas."
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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While out on a walk in the hills during a visit to her relatives in Derbyshire, Jane finds a terribly mutilated body. It turns out to be Tess Arnold, a stillroom maid at a local estate known for her skill as an herbalist. Was Tess suspected of witchcraft? Was she thought to be traitor to the secret rites of the Freemasons? What was her relationship with the Duke's family. Was the killing the work of a madman? When the wrong person is accused of murder, Jane Austen becomes an innocent victim's only hope in a fiendishly clever and breathlessly diverting mystery.

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