Friday, June 27, 2014
The Toll-Gate - Georgette Heyer
This book is madcap. Pretty much no other way to describe it. Mr. John Staple, lately returned from the Wars, where he was a captain, has been summoned with the rest of the family to celebrate his cousin’s engagement. Bored out of his skull, he decides to visit a friend in the Peak District. Unfortunately, on the way, he gets completely lost. The first place he finds himself is a toll gate, manned only by a rather frightened 11-year-old boy whose father (the real toll collector) has gone missing. Jack, smelling a rat, stays with the boy, and ends up uncovering a mystery involving the toll collector and the heir to the local squire. Pretty soon, that family, a local highwayman, and a Bow Street runner are involved.
See what I mean by madcap? I read through this one pretty quickly, because I just really needed to know what would happen next. The mystery is finally solved, but I will confess, I was a bit disappointed by the ending. There were some personal matters that could have used a little bit more wrapping up. Still, I’ll rate this as one of my favorite Heyer books.