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Summary

Eliza Altairsky-Lointaine is the toast of Moscow society, a beautiful actress in an infamous theatre troupe. Her love life is as colourful as the parts she plays. She is the estranged wife of a descendant of Genghis Khan. And her ex-husband has threatened to kill anyone who courts her. He appears to be making good on his promise.

Fandorin is contacted by a concerned friend - the widowed wife of Chekhov - who asks him to investigate an alarming incident involving Eliza. But when he watches Eliza onstage for the first time, he falls desperately in love.... Can he solve the case - and win over Eliza - without attracting the attention of the murderer he is trying to find?

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your Library section along with the audio.

©2017 Boris Akunin (P)2017 Orion Publishing Group

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  • 12-12-17

Theatrical to a fault

I imagine Akunin is drawing from a narrative style that dictates the plot line, characters, comic timing etc and if I do a bit of research I’ll appreciate the novel more. That being said, I don’t think the plot was grand enough for a Fandorin novel. It was a sweet tale with minor intrigue and twists but for the most it part it just puttered along. Fandorin was made to look a bit of a fool, owing to his being blinded by love but he was far too illogical and misguided than his previous detective successes should logically allow for. The voice acting was very good for the most part but I’ve rated it down because the Japanese accent of Masa was so objectionable it bordered on racist. It reminded me of Mickey Rooney in Breakfast at Tiffany’s, rather than a Japanese man who had been by the side of Fandorin for 30 plus years. By this stage Masa should have a much stronger command of Russian (in the case of this audiobook, English). Masa also seems much the same character as the early books, one dimensional with little growth or development. It was enjoyable so I gave it a 3 overall but story and performances deserve a 2 due to the points mentioned above.