The Victorian Bookshop Mysteries

The Royal Assassin is the third installment in Kate Parker’s Victorian Bookshop Mystery series, continuing the adventures of Georgia Fenchurch, owner and operator of Fenchurch’s Books and member of the Archivist Society, a group dedicated to solving mysteries no one else can handle.

The Royal AssasinWhen the bodyguard of a Russian princess in London to meet her arranged fiance, the Duke of Sussex, is murdered, the Duke of Blackford shows up at Georgia’s shop looking for her assistance. He has contrived a position for Georgia as temporary secretary and English tutor in the home of the Duke of Hereford, where the Russian princess is staying. Rather against her better judgment, Georgia agrees; she finds it very difficult to say no to the Duke. But are they dealing with criminals, anarchists, or royal intrigue? Or perhaps all three?

Georgia and the Archivists are back in The Conspiring Woman. With the Duke of Blackford off The Conspiring Womantouring his American investments, Georgia undertakes the search for a missing child and his mother. When Lady Hale is found dead, the Archivists soon discover that she’s not the only wealthy, and unhappy, wife to disappear in recent months. Where is her little boy? And what’s become of those missing women? Georgia finds some surprising answers in her search for a killer—and then the Duke comes home. Have his travels changed his mind about the requirements for a suitable duchess?

The series (which begins with The Vanishing Thief and The Counterfeit Lady) is set in the late Victorian era, as telephones and electric lights begin to appear in London; the characters are well drawn and interesting, and the plots are entertaining. I hope there will be more Victorian Bookshop Mysteries, but in the meantime The Conspiring Woman wraps up some questions that have run through the series and sets Georgia on a new path.

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