Yet she is thrown oddly off guard by the fierce-looking man who joins her in foiling a crime outside a fancy ball--and then disappears into the shadows, leaving only his card. Read more...
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Yet she is thrown oddly off guard by the fierce-looking man who joins her in foiling a crime outside a fancy ball--and then disappears into the shadows, leaving only his card. His name is Joshua Gage, and he claims to know Beatrice's employers. Beyond that, he is an enigma with a hypnotically calm voice and an ebony-and-steel cane. . . .
Joshua, who carries out clandestine investigations for the Crown, is equally intrigued. He has a personal interest in Miss Lockwood, a suspected thief and murderer, not to mention a fraudster who claims to have psychical powers. The quest to discover her whereabouts has pulled him away from his mournful impulses to hurl himself into the sea--and engaged his curiosity about the real Beatrice Lockwood, whose spirit, he suspects, is not as delicate as her face and figure.
He does know one thing, though: This flame-haired beauty was present the night Roland Fleming died at the Academy of the Occult. Guilty or not, she is his guide to a trail of blood and blackmail, mesmerism and madness--a path that will lead both of them into the clutches of a killer who calls himself the Bone Man. . . .
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2013-02-18
- Reviewer: Staff
If not exactly a taut thriller, Quick’s second Ladies of Lantern Street installment (after 2012 ‘s Crystal Gardens) is a breezy, fast-moving Victorian whodunit. Our intrepid heroine, the attractive and resourceful Beatrice Lockwood, is an agent for the private inquiry firm of Flint & Marsh, a sort of prefeminist detective agency staffed by women with extrasensory abilities. Through a series of deft plot twists, Beatrice’s powers are brought to bear on solving the murder of her boss, finding a blackmailer, and stopping a mad scientist from using an Egyptian artifact to resurrect the dead. Quick applies the fantastical elements with a light touch as Beatrice explores her growing romance with Joshua Gage, a formidable, legendary ex-spy with whom she finds herself allied and magically connected. The dialogue throughout rings true and is often clever. Some weak spots in the plot might dismay hard-core mystery fans, but the novel as a whole is likely to delight fans of romantic period fiction. Agent: Steven Axelrod, the Axelrod Agency. (Apr.)
Love, Victorian style
The Ladies of Lantern Street are back for a second historical adventure in Amanda Quick’s The Mystery Woman. Beatrice Lockwood—a former practicing psychic, now private investigator—is drawn into a dangerous case by a wounded ex-spy. When his sister is threatened with blackmail, Joshua Gage believes Beatrice is to blame—and he also suspects her in the grisly murder of her former employer. But upon meeting the courageous beauty who carries a gun in her stocking, his mind changes—and his heart is engaged. Beatrice’s near-kidnapping leads them to discover that an obsessed villain seeks to use her paranormal powers to raise the dead. As Joshua and Beatrice fight for their lives, they fall in love, though she fears their difference in social station will preclude a happily-ever-after. Before that problem can be addressed, however, they must stop an assassin and the evil man who hired him. Thrilling, imaginative and amusing, this Victorian love story is another Quick winner.
SOMEWHERE IN TIME
Enchanting as usual, Lynn Kurland spins a tale of love across the ages in Roses in Moonlight. Antique textiles expert Samantha Drummond escapes her smothering parents for a summer in the British Isles. Right away she lands in trouble when she discovers stolen goods in her handbag. In her attempt to get away from some unsavory types, Samantha stumbles into Elizabethan England with another refugee from modern times, Derrick Cameron, a British antiquities dealer who is determined to retrieve his client’s precious artifact and is sure that Samantha is the thief. An experienced time traveler, Derrick isn’t as awed as Samantha by the change in environs, but his attraction to the pretty Yank has him reeling. They make their way in and out of different centuries, and trust develops between the pair as they unravel mysteries and right past wrongs. Though love blossoms, is Samantha ready to curtail her newfound freedom? With charming characters and humorous banter, this kisses-only story sparkles.
TOP PICK IN ROMANCE
In The Week Before the Wedding by Beth Kendrick, bride-to-be Emily McKellips anticipates a lovely seven days of festivities, capped off by her marriage to her fiancé at a lakeside resort. Surgeon Grant Cardin is the perfect man, and his family is the perfect antidote to her dysfunctional childhood that led to some wild ways. But Emily has an MBA now, and is all things practical—nothing like the 22-year-old who married on a whim 10 years ago, divorcing a mere five months later. But the week is wreaking havoc on her nerves, with her many-times-married mom on the prowl, her best friend recalling crazier times and the unexpected appearance of her ex. How did he get there, and how fast can she get rid of him? But Ryan Lassiter has other ideas. Now a successful movie producer, he’s never forgotten the woman he wed. Will Emily be forced to choose between two good men? A romantic comedy with charming characters and laugh-out-loud scenes, this story is perfect for the upcoming wedding season.