Monday, September 14, 2020

Revenge in Rubies - Historical Mystery Review

Goodreads: Revenge in Rubies (Harriet Gordon Mystery #2) by A.M. Stuart

Rating: Really Liked It!
Source: Publisher

Description:  When Harriet Gordon receives word from a friend about a tragic death, she and Inspector Curran are thrust into a web of family secrets that threatens to destroy them both in this all-new mystery from the author of Singapore Sapphire. Singapore.

1910 Singapore. Harriet Gordon has found fulfillment at last. Her young ward, Will, has settled into his new home with Harriet and her brother, Julian. And Harriet’s employment as a typist at the Straits Settlements Police Force has given her an intriguing way to occupy her time and some much-needed financial independence. But when her friend and employer, Inspector Robert Curran, is called to the scene of a brutal murder and Harriet is asked to comfort the victim’s family, her newfound sense of contentment is abruptly shattered.

Sylvie Nolan, the new and much-younger wife of Lieutenant Colonel John Nolan, has been bludgeoned to death in her bedroom. The tightly knit military community in Singapore quickly tries to close ranks to hinder Curran’s investigation. Harriet has ties to the Nolan family and realizes that her friendship with the colonel’s sister might prove useful to Curran’s efforts to find the culprit. But to get close enough to the family’s secrets, Harriet must once again face her painful past and Curran is forced to dredge up some long-buried secrets of his own.

And when more shocking deaths occur that all seem linked to Sylvie’s murder, Harriet and Curran realize that they too are in the sights of a callous killer. . . . 

Genre: Mystery - Historical

Why I Picked This Book:  I really enjoyed the first book in this series and couldn't pass up the second book!

My Impression:  I really enjoyed the first book in this series and honestly I think I enjoyed this one even more!  Often the second book just doesn't quite live up to the first book but instead of feeling awkward or slow this book feels like the series is really gaining traction.  I really loved seeing Harriet again and I loved that while she is a main character we also see a lot through Curran's eyes.  Curran is an interesting man and I enjoyed learning more about his military service and the hints regarding his father were fascinating and I'm hoping come front and center in a future book.  I absolutely loved that Li An stepped out of the shadows a bit and we learned more of her back story.  

The mystery was a good one with a victim who was described as an angel but had hidden depths, a whole host of characters with possible motive but no opportunity, and secrets stretching across oceans.  Early 20th century Singapore is a fascinating world with a multi-layer society, unspoken rules, and a labyrinth of prejudices.  I find the world fascinating and felt like with the addition of the military angle of this particular mystery and the hints of Chinatown I really got a good picture of the world the characters inhabit.  This is an interesting series with likable yet flawed characters and a unique setting and I will be anxiously awaiting the third book!

Would I Read More of this Series/Author?  Absolutely!  I've really enjoyed the two books I've read by Stuart and will definitely read more.

Would I Recommend this Book?  Definitely!  If you enjoy historical mysteries - Jennifer Ashley's Kat Holloway series comes to mind - I think you will enjoy this one.

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


  1. I like historical mysteries and so making a note of this one.

  2. This sounds like a great mystery series and its good when mystery and characters stand the test of the reading.

  3. I’m not usually a historical fan but I’ve been reading more and more mysteries and I can see there are some great historical mysteries out there like this one!

  4. I still need to read the first in this series. I love the setting--time period and location. I am glad you enjoyed this one. I look forward to reading it.

  5. I haven't heard of this series but I do love a good historical mystery! :)