Jun 15, 2016

The Daughter of Time

by Josephine Tey

One of Scotland Yard's top detectives, Alan Grant, is recuperating in a hospital bed from an injury. He's known for his ability to "read faces" so a friend brings in a stack of portraits for him to look at. Grant is struck by the face of one particular man he assumes is a kindly judge. It's really Richard III, vilified in history books for the murder of his nephews the princes, in order to secure his own position. Grant becomes interested in digging into history to find out what really happened, because he can't imagine that a man with such a wise face would have murdered the Princes in the Tower (or ordered it done).

This book has been on my TBR list for ages- long before I started blogging. For some reason I always thought it was a sci-fi or speculative fiction novel, something to do with time-travel perhaps. Ha! was I ever wrong. I tried really hard to like it. I was particularly intrigued by Robert Barnard's introduction which told me a lot about the quality of this author's writing- she is not formulaic. It made me eager to read the book, and I did appreciate her skilled use of words. But the few main characters in the hospital room bored me, and unfortunately I don't know enough about British history to care about the mystery itself. The story itself introduces enough facts this shouldn't be a problem, but honestly it just did not hold my interest, thirty pages in my mind was seriously wandering. Too many names. I guess I just proved to myself that crime fiction is really not my thing. And this is supposed to be one of the best books of its genre!

Can anyone tell me the reason daughter is in the title? I'm curious because the man solving the mystery and the historical figure in question were both men...

Abandoned          206 pages, 1951

more opinions:
Things Mean a Lot
Read Warbler
She Reads Novels
Savidge Reads
A Penguin a Week
Truth, Beauty, Freedom and Books


bermudaonion said...

Sorry this was a stinker for you.

Literary Feline said...

Haha! That's funny about the title not matching the book. Okay, so maybe not really funny, but it does make you wonder, doesn't it? I haven't read anything by Tey. I am sorry this one wasn't better.

Jeane said...

I'm sure there was a reason for it somewhere in the book, but I didn't read far enough to come across it.

Jenny @ Reading the End said...

I think they say at one point that it's a proverb, "Truth is the daughter of time." That is in any case my memory of what the situation is. Shame this didn't work for you! I read it when I was twelve or so, and it blew my tiny mind. :p