Susannah Stapleton is a historical researcher with over twenty years' experience unravelling mysteries for museums, organizations and private individuals. The Adventures of Maud West, Lady Detective is Susannah's first book. She lives in Shropshire.
A glorious, gripping read, constructed just like the detective stories Stapleton so admires, with clues, cliffhangers, blind alleys and revelations aplenty, uncovering the many truths about Maud and her exceptional life. -- Charlotte Heathcote * The Sunday Express * Meet a fantasizing, sharpshooting, cross-dressing, self-advertising female star of the early twentieth century . . . It's all about women, this book. -- Libby Purves * TLS * A gripping read * Daily Mirror * Fascinating * Sunday Times * This romp through the life of one of Britain's first female detectives sets out to solve one central mystery: who was Maud West? Her story is told in tantalising detail by Susannah Stapleton * 5 stars, Mail on Sunday * Shot at in Paris, blackmailed in Bloomsbury: the self-promoting cases, and many faces, of a fearless female sleuth . . . breezy * Guardian * Although Stapleton does not engage in much literal leg-work - she is able to do a lot of her research in her pyjamas - this account of her pursuit of the will-o'-the-wisp-like Maud through the maze of online archives and registries is utterly enthralling, often even thrilling * Daily Telegraph * Highly entertaining * The District Messenger, The Newsletter of the Sherlock Holmes Society of London * Susannah Stapleton's erudite but hugely entertaining debut is a true-life detective story about a true-life detective . . . [an] exhilarating eye-opener of a book * Spectator * Impressive . . . more fascinating than any fictional detective story * Choice * Intriguing * Woman's Weekly * [A] charming light-hearted investigation into the life of Maud West, a lady detective. A sort of Miss Marple on the trail of Miss Marple . . . frank and funny. -- Ysenda Maxtone-Graham * The Times Review * Compulsively absorbing . . . delightfully well written, with both sympathy and empathy; it is jaunty, engaging and witty without being arch. A triumph. -- Lucy Lethbridge * Literary Review * If you are inclined to regard the Golden Age detective stories as obviously a fantasy form - and never more fantastic than when the sleuth is a woman, Susannah Stapleton's book will astound you. Maud West was a real woman detective, but her story blurs the margin between possible truth and impossible invention till your head spins. If you are susceptible to Miss Marple and Harriet Vane you must read The Adventures of Maud West. You will never know the difference between fact and fiction again. -- Jill Paton Walsh, author of the Lord Peter Wimsey-Harriet Vane novels Susannah Stapleton's dogged sleuthing of Maud's own complicated, messy, spunky life reveals the wider story of a little-explored sliver of life between the wars. I loved it. -- Kate Colquhoun, author of <i>Mr Briggs' Hat </i>and <i>Did She Kill Him?</i> Maud West is a gloriously English eccentric - think Miranda Hart meets Margaret Rutherford - brought to vigorous life by present day sleuth Susannah Stapleton. -- Sean O'Connor, author of <i>Handsome Brute</i> A powerhouse of a book ... The Adventures of Maud West, Lady Detective is, as one suspects Maud herself was, sweet, and wonderful company, and absolutely determined to discover the truth. -- Judith Flanders, author of <i>The Invention of Murder </i>and the Sam Clair mysteries Deliciously entertaining, meticulous and affectionate ... Criminally good. I loved it. -- Mel McGrath, author of <i>Give Me the Child</i> and <i>The Guilty Party</i> Terrific ... A brilliant literary sleuth tracks down a real one, uncovering a flabbergasting hidden life along the way. -- Lissa Evans, author of <i>Old Baggage</i> and <i>Crooked Heart</i>