Wednesday, November 14, 2018

City of Secrets - Historical Mystery Review

Rating: Very Good
Source: Publisher

Con artist Elizabeth Miles has determined that Society is the biggest con of all. So far, Elizabeth’s only real social success has been with Priscilla Knight. Priscilla is a dedicated suffragist who was recently widowed for the second time in her young life. Her beloved first husband, DeForrest Jenks, died in a tragic accident and left her with two young daughters and a comfortable fortune. Soon after his death, her pastor convinced her she needed a man to look after her. Before she knew it, he had engineered a whirlwind courtship and hasty marriage to fellow parishioner Endicott Knight. Less than nine months later, Endicott is also dead in a somewhat less tragic and even more suspicious accident.

Priscilla confides to Elizabeth that she had understood Endicott was wealthy in his own right, and she had brought a sizeable fortune to the marriage as well. Now her banker is telling her she has hardly any money left and that her house has been mortgaged. The banker has hinted at a scandal that could damage the family’s reputation and her daughters’ future prospects. Fearing destructive gossip, Priscilla doesn’t know whom to trust.

Elizabeth discovers some unsavory evidence that seems to point to the possibility that Endicott’s death may have been connected to blackmail. To save her new friend’s future, Elizabeth must use her special set of skills to find the truth.

Genre: Mystery - Fiction

Why I Picked This Book:
I loved the first book in the series so I was really excited to read the second book.

My Impression:
  I loved the first book in the series but honestly wasn't quite sure how it could become a series.  With Elizabeth now living in society and trying to live an honest life how could she get into the kind of trouble that she did in the first book?  But while Elizabeth is living a (mostly) honest life trouble does seem to find her and I like how she got involved in Priscilla's mess.  I found it completely believable and true to type that Elizabeth jumped in feet first though this time her focus is to help and not just make a score for herself.

While I really enjoyed the setup in the first book I did appreciate how this book got right to the point from the beginning.  It was an intriguing mystery that was a bit different from the usual murder mystery I read.  In fact the bulk of the mystery has nothing to do with murder but is more of a heist/con type mystery.  It was a lot of fun to see how Elizabeth manages to get everything worked out and I appreciated that she wasn't afraid to ask for help.

There is a bit about Elizabeth and  Gideon's relationship.  The two got engaged in the previous book but there are lots of things still to work out.  My only complaint is that I would I have liked to see more of Mrs. Bates and Anna.  I so enjoyed getting to know them and they played relatively small parts here.  This was a very enjoyable historical mystery with interesting characters and a lot of fun!

Would I Read More of this Series/Author?
  Absolutely!  I'm already looking forward to the next book and in the meantime will catch up on her Gaslight Mystery series.

Would I Recommend this Book?
  If you enjoy historical mysteries and are looking for something a little different than this is a great choice!

* I received this book in exchange for an honest review.  As always my opinions and impressions are completely my own. *


  1. I haven't been reading series much these days, but the title of the book and your review make this sound really interesting, and worth a peek. Hugs...RO

  2. I have a library copy of the first book in the series, which I hope to start soon. I read some of the author's Gaslight Mystery books, which I really enjoyed for both the stories and settings.

  3. I loved the first one and I have this one to review. Looks great.

  4. I still need to read the first one but hope to grab this one from the library as soon as I am ready for it. I am glad you enjoyed this one.

  5. Now this does sound like a really good mystery and I like the con aspect to it. Definitely sounds like a good read.

  6. Oh good! I've had my eye on this series since book one released. The con game part is what I find great and not the usual in a historical mystery.

  7. Sounds really good! Glad to hear you're looking forward to a third book - sign of a good series.

  8. Yay! I am so glad you liked this one. I want to read this!