This is an omnibus of three books of mostly short stories about Lord Darcy, the chief investigator for Prince Richard, Duke of Normandy, in an alternate world where King Richard the Lion-Heart survived the cross bow attack that killed him in our world. His family is still in charge of an Angevin empire that includes a good chunk of Europe, as well as North and South America.
The books were written in the 60s and 70s, so are set in that timeframe, but it’s a timeframe where science didn’t really go anywhere, and magic is the norm instead. Lord Darcy works with a sorcerer, Sean O’Lochlainn, who’s basically his walking forensics lab. Darcy’s absolutely brilliant, and usually knows who’s done it – it’s just a matter of getting the evidence.
I really enjoyed these books. That they’re mostly short stories was a bonus – it allowed a pretty wide variety of cases. Things were really well plotted, and just really interesting. I think they’ve also aged pretty well – they’re not particularly of their time, so it’s easy to just drop in. My only complaint is that I’m not sure why we had to be reminded every single time he entered that Sean is “tubby”.