Frances Doughty steps out again, to find that her detecting skills may enable her to find an independent place in the world. along with her trusty maid, now elevated to companion and apprentice detective, and a mixed bag of informants, she sharpens her wits on a problem that starts out as a merely finding the author of a pamphlet, and then escalates into a maddening whirl of deceit and death.
I found the beginning a bit slow, but was also aware that I was being gently sucked into Frances’ world, and was reluctant to leave it. When the action takes over it becomes rollicking fun, in a sedate pristine way. I so enjoyed the moment when Frances decides that if she wants to be able to vote, and have responsibilty for her own affairs, she could at least climb over the fence in front of her! You have to read it to appreciate it.
I read this in two days which is pretty good for me. There are elements of other female detectives in here and at times I was reminded of dear Precious anglicised and transported back to Bayswater in the Victorian era. What is interesting is the development of Frances’ character from relative naivety to becoming more politically and social aware of her place and role in society. But a hoot none the less, a good read, and now waiting for the next volume.
Janet Dowling, Professional Storyteller.