Victorine Better Mystery than Romance

Victorine is a surprising novel for Frances Parkinson Keyes. It’s about half her usual length, and, though it sets out to be one of her typical romances, it turns out to be an engrossing murder mystery.

Bachelor Prosper Villac manages one of his family’s two rice mills. He’s smitten by a dance hall musician who is the girlfriend of the club’s sleazy owner. When Titine announces she wants gold slippers, Prosper determines to get them for her.

Then Prosper meets gorgeous, rich Victorine LaBranche That would have been the end of Titine—except that Prosper had already delivered and received payment from Titine for the gold slippers.

Two nights later, Titine is found dead, buried in a bin of rice in Prosper’s mill. She’s wearing gold slippers.

When Prosper has to view the body, he sees the slippers Titine is wearing are not the ones he bought for her.

Romance has to take a back seat to the murder investigation, which is fortunate. The mystery is well-plotted, the characters in it surprisingly vivid. By contrast, Prosper and Victorine are stock characters that could have come out of any romance novel.

Victorine makes me wish Keyes had decided to write mysteries instead of romances.

Victorine
By Frances Parkinson Keyes
Julian Messner, 1958
288 pages
My grade: C+
© 2007 Linda Gorton Aragoni
Advertisements

Published by

Linda Aragoni

I'm passionate about helping people learn through the medium of nonfiction writing. Although I occasionally have an idea of my own, I mostly build education tools by recycling and repurposing other folks' ideas.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s