[Tears] Too Many Magicians (Lord Darcy, volume 1) by Randall Garrett

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James Nicoll

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Dec 4, 2022, 9:44:53 AM12/4/22
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Too Many Magicians (Lord Darcy, volume 1) by Randall Garrett

Lord Darcy, Chief Investigator for the Duke of Normandy, struggles
with a locked room mystery on whose solution the security of the
Angevin Empire may hang.

https://jamesdavisnicoll.com/review/searching-every-which-way
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Andrew McDowell

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Dec 4, 2022, 10:48:39 AM12/4/22
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(I have this in the 3-in-1 volume which I think is the best of the covers you have shown, if you ignore the fact that - at least to me - Master Sean looks more likely to fall on his back from fear than do anything constructive).

The Plantagenets in this timeline are not our Plantagenets (The Devil's Brood) for two reasons. One is that Richard the Lionheart becomes a sensible ruler after a troubled recovery from the wound that killed him in our timeline. The second is that codified magic, especially when in the hands of the church, has stabilised their society and seems to have ensured a succession of benign rulers and feudal lords (in the Angevin Empire, anyway). Even when they are portrayed as flawed, their flaws tend not to affect their stewardship of their domains to any really unfortunate extent. So if the author has had his judgement distorted by the emotional appeal of a fantastic feudal society (or thinks this would sell) he has at least provided it with a better support than a large number of other such societies in fantasy. I was sufficiently intrigued by the Plantagenets to plant broom (their emblem) in my garden (Spanish broom is quite decorative) but it is not long lived or particularly well behaved for a small garden, and I did not replace it when it died.

I bought and enjoyed Ten Little Wizards on Amazon Kindle but could not find a Study in Sorcery there

(Spoiler)
I have been repeatedly reminded of a clever twist in the plot when political allegations are being cast. Lord Darcy works closely with Commander Lord Ashley, and asks him to speculate about the motives of suspects. Commander Lord Ashely is in fact (and correctly) Lord Darcy's prime suspect, and his speculations on the motives of others (all similar) are in fact a disclosure of his own motive for committing the crime under investigation.

Dorothy J Heydt

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Dec 8, 2022, 11:17:56 PM12/8/22
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In article <tmibp0$ovm$1...@reader2.panix.com>,
James Nicoll <jdni...@panix.com> wrote:
>Too Many Magicians (Lord Darcy, volume 1) by Randall Garrett
>
>Lord Darcy, Chief Investigator for the Duke of Normandy, struggles
>with a locked room mystery on whose solution the security of the
>Angevin Empire may hang.

(Hal Heydt)
And, typical of Garrett, some of the character's names translate
and combine for a ghastly pun.

Dorothy J Heydt

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Dec 8, 2022, 11:22:55 PM12/8/22
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In article <9fb42cad-c77f-4a5a...@googlegroups.com>,
(Hal Heydt)
Garret was a fan of murder mysteries in general and Nero Wolf in
particular. One of tributes he pays to Wolf is the description of
the Marquis de London and the name of the Marquis' "leg man",
and--IIRC from some of Dorothy's remarks--his chef, as well.
(Dorothy was also a whodunit fan, including Nero Wolf.)
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