- Author: Laura Shepherd-Robinson
- Series: Standalone
- No. of pages: 448
- Dates read: 16.06.20 – 20.06.20
- Star Rating: 5 stars and Favourite!
- ARC received from Pan Macmillan/Mantle
Plot: London, 1782. Desperate for her politician husband to return home from France, Caroline ‘Caro’ Corsham is already in a state of anxiety when she finds a well-dressed woman mortally wounded in the bowers of the Vauxhall Pleasure Gardens. The Bow Street constables are swift to act, until they discover that the deceased woman was a highly-paid prostitute, at which point they cease to care entirely. But Caro has motives of her own for wanting to see justice done, and so sets out to solve the crime herself. Enlisting the help of thief-taker, Peregrine Child, their inquiry delves into the hidden corners of Georgian society, a world of artifice, deception and secret lives. But with many gentlemen refusing to speak about their dealings with the dead woman, and Caro’s own reputation under threat, finding the killer will be harder, and more treacherous than she can know . . .
I mean words cannot begin to describe how much I loved this book.
While I do read a lot of adult books this was definitely a book out of my comfort zone. I tend to read a lot of adult fantasy but rarely read adult historical fiction in any period other than the 1920’S which is when I read Agatha Christie’s work and some other murder mysteries.
Reading this book really made me feel like I have evolved as a reader and I am so happy to see me read something unlike much that I have read.
Thank you Netgalley and Pan Macmillan for giving me a chance to read in the book in exchange for an honest review!
My top 3 favourite things were;
- The Protagonist.
- The multiple POVs
- The structure of the mystery.
I found Cora Corsham (the protagonist) to be such a powerful force of a character. I enjoyed her character a lot. I loved that she was a mother, non-judgemental, confident and stubborn woman. I would want her on my side at all times! I really enjoyed when we were following her POV, I enjoyed her steadfastness and watching her internal struggle over revelations within the novel.
I found that multiple POV’s helped with the pacing of the book. Just as you begin to wane on one character’s account you then move onto a POV from a different character. What was good as well as was the POV’s added to the greater sense of world-building for 18th Century London. One POV focusing on aristocratic London, one on lower-class London and one giving you a behind the scenes view of the world of prostitution in those times.
I also found that the mystery was dragged out just the right amount to me. At one point I felt that we were learning way too much too early on in the story but that just meant that you weren’t ready for all the other stuff the author was sending your way. Each chapter you learnt something more about the mystery or another element was introduced, this constantly kept me on my toes and kept me reading page after page, chapter after chapter. Even right up until the end I wasn’t sure what to expect from this story.
FYI, this book definitely is not for the faint-hearted. This is a very dark tale filled with evil characters, desperate characters and a whole lot of secrets!
The next book I will be reviewing is Introducing The Honourable Phryne Fisher by Kerry Greenwood. A collection of the first 3 novels in the Phryne Fisher series.