My daughter was obsessively reading a fairy tale retelling series that was available through the KU library, so I decided to use my "free trial" and activate. I wanted to find a few books to read as well, and I'm a historical mystery fan, so I decided to give this one a try.
The main character was a newspaper reported named Penny Green, and it's set during the Victorian time period. Overall, I found the book pretty weak, although it wasn't bad for a first installment in the series.
When I compare this book with some of the stalwarts of this particular genre, including Anna Lee Huber, Tasha Alexander, C. S. Harris, and my personal favorite Deanna Raybourn, the flaws are apparent. All three of those authors are able to imbue their historical settings and characters with a sort of a crackling personality that is just simply missing in this book. The romantic subplot- because this type of mystery ALWAYS has a romantic subplot - is usually overflowing with chemistry.
The mystery itself was meh and I figured it out very early in the book. Penny, the main character, wasn't entirely without charm, but the romantic subplot with the putative love interest lacked that sparkling chemistry that exists between Nicholas and Lady Julia or Sebastian St. Cyr and Hero.
The cover is lovely, though, and the remaining books in the series have covers that are equally lovely. I suspect, as well, that the series will get better over time. I haven't downloaded the second in the series, but I might before my trial ends, just to see if I'm right.