Saturday, September 19, 2015

A Victorian Mystery with Delightful Characters

A distraught Lady Jane Grey seeks help from her friend Charles Lennox. Prue Smith, a former of housemaid of Lady Jane's, has been found dead in her new place of employment. Prue's employer believes she committed suicide, but Jane isn't convinced. Charles, an amateur detective in the habit of solving mysteries whether the police appreciate it or not, agrees to take the case.

When Charles visits the dead girl's room, he discovers telltale signs that point to murder rather than suicide. Her employer is adamant that she killed herself and insists that Charles leave the detecting to the police, but Charles is not so easily put off.

There are both positives and negatives in this book. On the positive side, the characters are delightful. Charles and Lady Jane are likable as is Graham, Lennox's loyal manservant. The setting is true to life and showcases both the period and the lives of the characters. I couldn't stop reading it was such fun to be immersed in the period with likable characters.

On the negative side, it you like a mystery that is difficult to solve and has lots of unexpected twists, this isn't for you. The plot is absurdly easy to guess. The facts are laid out in the first quarter of the book. The problem from then on how the author tries to divert your attention. I liked the book, but as a mystery it was disappointing. Luckily, the characters and setting carry the book.

I reviewed this book for Net Galley.