A Royal Pain (A Royal Spyness Mystery)

A Royal Pain - Rhys Bowen Quite a fun romp of a cozy mystery, set in the early 1930s in London, pre-WWII... Lady Georgie is trying to be independent, but it's tough being 34th in line for the throne without an income or even an allowance. She's decided to stay in London sans maid or help to get away from her annoying sister-in-law Fig. But to make some extra cash, Georgie's set up a service to open houses for English gentry -- just a bit of dusting and light housework.Except, Her Majesty (Queen May), aka HM, has asked Georgie to chaperone the Princess Hannelore from the Bavarian royalty lineage and a distant cousin. HM is concerned that the Prince of Wales is far too interested in an old, sour American woman (Wallis Simpson) and not doing his duty to marry and settle into his role as future king. So HM thinks that the 18 year old, virginal Princess Hanni who was raised in a convent is just the ticket to get the Prince of Wales' attention. Except that Princess Hanni is more than a handful. And even after getting her non-royal Cockney grandfather and his good neighbor Mrs. 'uggins to serve as butler and cook, Georgie has her hands full. Especially since she and the princess seem to continually being mixed up with deaths -- the unfortunate death of gentry who drunkenly tumbled from a balcony at a party, the cute socialist-communist that Hanni insisted on visiting in the East End, and now the owner of the bookshop where the cute socialist-communist worked at. Thank goodness that Darcy O'Mara seems to be close enough at hand to save Georgie and Hanni from too much publicity and too much danger. Or is he? Just who is behind all of these deaths? Is it a communist or fascist conspiracy against the English throne?One of the more fun and funny books in the series (yes, I read them out of order by mistake). Sure wish Darcy and Georgie would figure out what they've got and get on with it all ready. Although I must say, I don't quite like the cavalier attitude that Georgie's mother and friend Belinda take towards sex and casual affairs. Not being a prude by any means, it just seems that they're both trying to force Georgie into giving away her virginity... for what? Neither her mother nor her friend are that happy, despite having clothes and men and parties galore. They both seem empty and shallow. And while they add splash and color to the stories, I almost wish neither were around much. Except when Georgie's mother says something oh so sweetly cutting to Wallis Simpson; that makes her presence much more bearable!