In a London slowly recovering from World War II, two very different women join forces to launch a business venture: The Right Sort Marriage Bureau. But the promising start to their careers is threatened when their newest client, Tillie La Salle, is found murdered and the man arrested for the crime is the prospective husband they matched her with.
World War II and its immediate aftermath compose a well-trod territory for fiction, especially the British homefront. But I’ve never read a book that breathes life into the era quite like The Right Sort of Man ... Montclair adds in twists of melancholy ... The Right Sort of Man’s rat-a-tat dialogue is never better than when Iris is eviscerating the latest unfortunate to stand in her way, or when she’s finagling her way into a new line of inquiry ... Montclair mines fantastic comedy from both Iris’ ever-increasing portfolio of underhanded skills and the very genteel Gwen’s interactions with Iris’ motley former comrades ... Brimming with wit and joie de vivre but sneakily poignant under its whimsical surface, The Right Sort of Man is an utter delight and a fantastic kickoff to a new series.
Montclair has drawn some of the most interesting characters—intriguing, unusual yet totally believable—to populate this novel ... The plot moves quickly, well-paced with unexpected twists. There are moments of light-heartedness and moments of deep emotion, adding depth and dimension and lifting this book well out of the field of run-of-the-mill historical mysteries. The dialogue is fast-paced and funny, with some of the best one-liners I’ve seen in a novel. And throughout the voice and tone are—well—cheeky ... Montclair succeeds ... I’ll be first in line for her next book.
Fans of M. C. Beaton will relish the wit, and followers of Susan Elia MacNeal and Jacqueline Winspear will enjoy the depth and the period detail. Readers will want to get on the reserve list for the next Iris and Gwen adventure.