Introducing an exciting new series! Steeped in Victorian atmosphere and intrigue, this diverting mystery trails a feisty heroine as she takes on a precarious secret assignment. Rescued from the gallows in 1850s London, young orphan (and thief) Mary Quinn is surprised to be offered a singular education, instruction in fine manners — and an unusual vocation. Miss Scrimshaw’s Academy for Girls is a cover for an all-female investigative unit called The Agency, and at seventeen, Mary is about to put her training to the test. Assuming the guise of a lady’s companion, she must infiltrate a rich merchant’s home in hopes of tracing his missing cargo ships. But the household is full of dangerous deceptions, and there is no one to trust — or is there? Packed with action and suspense, banter and romance, and evoking the gritty backstreets of Victorian London, this breezy mystery debuts a daring young detective who lives by her wits while uncovering secrets — including those of her own past.
Set in the richly described underbelly of Victorian London, Lee's debut novel launching the Agency trilogy introduces feisty Mary Quinn. At the 11th hour, 12-year-old Mary is rescued from hanging (for thievery) and taken to Miss Scrimshaw's Academy for Girls, a school doubling as a secret training ground for female private detectives. When Mary turns 17, she is selected for a case requiring her to spy on a wealthy merchant by serving as a companion to his spoiled, petulant daughter, Angelica Thorold. Mr. Thorold is suspected of pirating valuable artifacts from India, and it turns out that James Easton, the younger brother of one of Angelica's suitors, is on Thorold's trail as well. Through the many and somewhat contrived plot twists, Mary's skills are tested; she prevails with Easton's help and attentions, partly belying the story's feminist tenor. A subplot revolves around a family secret Mary tries to keep buried. If cultural issues at times feel like they are being addressed with a modern sensibility, Mary's lively escapades, on the whole, will hold readers' attention and whet their interest for the next installment. Ages 12 up.
Great Book! Full of mystery (duh), suspense, bits of romance,and hidden identities. The characters are well developed and all have satisfying endings. I highly recommend!
This is a great book. It is well written and explains all the odds and ends in a mystery.
Really Good Book
Loved it. Even used it for a book report!