Set in Tunisia and France in 1935, Dido's Crown is a taut historical thriller influenced by Indiana Jones, The Thin Man, and John le Carré.
Mary Wilson MacPherson has always been adept at putting the past behind her: her father's death, her sister's disappearance, and her complicated relationship with childhood friends Tom and Will.
But that all changes when, traveling to North Africa on business for her husband, Mary meets a handsome French-Tunisian trader who holds a mysterious package her husband has purchased — a package which has drawn the interest not only of Britain's Secret Intelligence Service, but the Nazis as well.
When Tom and Will arrive in Tunisia, Mary suddenly finds herself on a race across the mesmerizing and ever-changing landscapes of the country, to the shores of southern France, and all across the wide blue Mediterranean. Despite her best efforts at distancing herself from her husband's world, Mary has become embroiled in a mystery that could threaten not only Tunisian and British security in the dangerous political landscape of 1935, but Mary's beliefs about her past and the security of her own future.
Where to buy
The World of Dido's Crown
What Readers Are Saying
"This dramatic, exciting historical novel is set in 1930s Tunisia and is reminiscent of Casablanca, The Maltese Falcon, and Raymond Chandler. Tough women, double crosses, and charming Brits, all against the gorgeous landscape of Tunisia...The elements in Oleanna that I loved are present in Dido's Crown: a strong sense of place, wonderfully deep relationships between the characters, and a heroine who is both classically 'strong' and also delightfully human...Dido's Crown is an exciting adventure story with surprisingly rich and deep emotional threads and glorious descriptions of exotic Tunisia. It's the kind of read that demands a weekend, because you won't want to stop."
"Another absolute stunner by Julie Rose. I have loved her other two books and this one was another wonderful read. As with her other books, the setting is almost a character unto itself. I actually felt I was was there with Mary having all of her adventures. This book starts off at a quick pace and never lets up. Highly recommended!"
Amazon 5-Star Review
"Dido's Crown is an absorbing and satisfying political thriller with a real 1930s noir feel to it. It is rich in complex characters, deftly drawn and involved in complex situations and complex relationships, and is refreshingly free of cliches as well as full of surprises. The Tunisian setting is an unusual one, vividly realized. The novel's fast pace is appropriate to its subject matter. I would happily spend more time in the company of these characters. Highly recommended!"
"I have been looking forward to sharing this review! I have to say, I fell in love...There is only one way to describe this book: Indiana Jones meets Casablanca. Rose’s sweeping use of language whisks the reader into the beautiful yet dangerous pre-world war 2 Tunisia and then to the beautiful French countryside...I absolutely loved Mary. She is a sarcastic, strong, indubitably flawed and complex character that is true to the women of that era."
"Julie K. Rose knows how to spin a good story! One way to describe this book is that it felt very movie-esque to me. It feels like a old black and white classic filled with intrigue, snappy dialogue, and lots of adventure...One of the stand outs in the book for me was the settings. Sure, France is probably pretty familiar to anyone who has spent any time checking out the HistFic genre. Tunisia was not someplace that I had read a lot of fiction about and I ate it up. The author does a great job of immersing the reader in a new world with lots of great historical and landscape detail. I loved it and was not ready to leave when I finished the book."
A Bookish Affair
"It almost reads like an older Agatha Christie novel, which I adore, for instance, one set overseas with Hercule Poirot such as Murder in Mesopotamia, or maybe Murder on the Orient Express...Then again, it also has the feel of any great BBC offering where espionage is involved in the plot. The way the scenes are set in the book appear as if they are on Masterpiece Theater...Dido’s Crown was like a highly entertaining special episode of the Amazing Race, set in the political turmoil of 1935 and with an added mystery. The old school suspense feel was totally on point."
Oh, For the Hook of a Book!