“Complex social networks spark an equally complex puzzle.”
—Kirkus Reviews STARRED REVIEW
Fans of Jane Austen have fallen in love with this mystery series featuring Rosalind Thorne, a young woman adept at helping ladies of the ton navigate the darker corners of Regency England—while revealing Society’s most shocking secrets . . .
Rosalind is pleased when she’s invited to Cassel House to help her friend, Louisa, prepare for her upcoming wedding. But that’s not the only event on her agenda. The trip will also reunite Rosalind with Devon Winterbourne, the newly minted Duke of Casselmaine. Devon and Rosalind were on the verge of betrothal before the infamous Thorne family scandal derailed their courtship. Now Rosalind wonders if there’s a chance their love might reignite . . .
Devon is as handsome as Rosalind remembers and it’s clear the attraction they once shared hasn’t waned. But their time together is interrupted by one crisis after another—including an awkwardly timed request for help from Louisa’s friend, Helen Corbyn. The recent, untimely death of Helen’s brother, William, was ruled a suicide, but few believe he took his own life. Helen needs to know what really happened—especially since she’s engaged to the man some suspect of killing him . . .
While Rosalind desperately wants to help, she fears her efforts might cast a pall over Louisa’s nuptials, not to mention her reunion with Devon. But when another untimely death rocks the ton, Rosalind has no choice but to uncover the truth—before more people die . . .
“A complex, enthralling mystery that rivals those of Anne Perry and Agatha Christie.”
—New York Journal of Books
Wilde's spirited fourth Regency mystery (after 2019's And Dangerous to Know) takes Rosalind Thorne, who offers society women discreet investigations, to England's fen country to help plan her friend Louisa Winterbourne's wedding. Louisa's titled cousin, the Duke of Casselmaine, who was once Rosalind's suitor, promptly renews his suit, but Rosalind isn't sure she wants the constraints of a high-society marriage. As Rosalind vacillates, the Winterbournes' neighbor persuades her to investigate the recent death of her brother, William Corbyn, the victim of an apparent shooting accident. Rosalind comes to suspect foul play. William was an investor in Casselmaine's ambitious efforts to drain the marshy land around their properties; did problems with the project's funding give Casselmaine a motive for murder? His reclusive mother drops disturbing hints about his past, and a key witness has disappeared from the district, complicating Rosalind's task. Despite an unwieldy conclusion, Wilde does a good job balancing accurate period detail with a look at such matters as the difference between attraction and compatibility, and the weight of family obligations. Lovers of Regency mysteries and smart female sleuths will be eager for more. \n