Adult novels: 50
How had they managed to not realize, for so long, what they meant to one another? And why then must they see the light when it was too late, when they could possess no more than a few moments of ferocious mutual awareness?
With more historical mystery elements than romance, this new spin on an old classic character was immensely intriguing. The beginning was a bit schizophrenic to me and I had a little tougher time sliding into Thomas' world. Our main character Charlotte Holmes takes her time coming to the forefront but after I finished the book, I think this choice really worked, but I needed hindsight to appreciate it.
There's one main mystery case needing to be solved with other little ones sprinkled in as new characters get introduced. There's a handful of main stay characters, an Inspector that brings the reader through the main mystery case, Charlotte's sister Livia who welcomes us into the world, Mrs. Watson ;) who helps to set-up our Sherlock Holmes, and Lord Ingram who weaves in our little thread of romance. There are a two handfuls of secondary characters who serve the mystery case or help to fill out the world.
This is obviously a first in a series book and should be read as such, as most of this could be considered an introduction to characters and relationships. Thomas does an amazing job with all the myriad intricacies in everyone's relationships but just be aware there is not much typical romance here. Charlotte and Lord Ingram have a past and obvious tension between them but if there is any payoff to be found, it is definitely in future installments.
I didn't really settle into this until the second half of the book and I missed more romance but the intrigue, refreshing spin, and genuine stimulating writing kept me engaged.
“By your standards it isn’t rational, I know. But you can’t expect to be treated rationally when you are a woman, Charlotte. I can’t explain why—that’s just how it is. And you must learn to accept it.”
Charlotte was quiet. Livia thought that perhaps for once, she’d put some sense into her little sister’s head. But as they walked back into the house, Charlotte turned to her and said, “I will try to understand why. But I will not learn to accept it. Never.”
Be a Charlotte.
After reading 'A Study in Scarlet Woman' and not being all that excited I thought I'd go ahead and give this a try since it was available at the library. Maybe the book would improve my impressions of the series. Maybe I might like it better.
Nah. Overall the book is a great disappointment. I had hoped we'd see more of Charlotte Holmes as being a detective now that the series has been set and we're not dealing with an introductory origin story for her. This time Charlotte has been tasked with finding the love interest of a friend of hers, Lady Ingram. The love interest? Charlotte's brother.
It seemed like an interesting premise that would possibly explore more of Charlotte's family but instead the story gets bogged down in details. Charlotte gets a love interest (sigh, this is what I had hoped the series would avoid). There are some rather convenient developments that tie up the storyline in some ways and possibly frees up another (?) love interest for Charlotte. Again, not really something I had hoped for to see in this.
The book is well-rated which puzzles me. At this point I think I'll just skip anything else Thomas reads. I tried her historical romance, YA fantasy trilogy and now this. I applaud that she's trying out different genres but in the end she's not an author I'll follow.
Library. Also really recommend you read the first in the series so you get more info on the characters as I read a few reviews from people who read this but not the first book. You'll likely be very confused, even if you know the original.