Author: Tasha Alexander, 2007.
Genre: Historical Fiction, Mystery.
Other Details: ebook. 354 pages.
London's social season is in full swing, and the aristocracy can't stop whispering about a certain gentleman who claims to be the direct descendent of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette. Drawing rooms, boudoirs, and ballrooms are also abuzz with the latest news of an audacious cat burglar who has been making off with precious items that once belonged to the ill-fated queen. But light gossip turns serious when the owner of one of the pilfered treasures is murdered and the thief develops a twisted obsession with Lady Emily Ashton as a brewing scandal threatens both her reputation and her private life. 0 synopsis from author's website.
The mild concerns I had with the first book were sorted by the second and I felt that Tasha Alexander did a brilliant job of capturing the late Victorian London Season as well as providing a satisfying mystery with just enough romance to spice things up.
Unlike some Americans writing about the period Tasha Alexander easily captures the sense of how important a woman's reputation was during this period and how fragile as well. Even though proudly independent Lady Emily is not that head strong to risk this kind of censure yet still manages to do things on her own terms.
As the synopsis above indicates the plot involves the jewels of Marie Antoinette as well as a claimant to the French throne even though France is clearly a republic during this period. The author's notes gives the historical background to this aspect as well as on the London Season. I always appreciate these kind of end notes from an author. A very enjoyable, well researched historical romantic mystery.