A Dangerous Affair
Avon, Feb 2009, $13.95
In his thirties recently elected to Parliament,“watch dog” Benjamin Disraeli offers Liberty Lane a fee to spy on dancer Columbine, whose disreputable behavior could lead to a nasty highly publicized scandal. Needing the money, Liberty reluctantly agrees. However, someone poisons Columbine with the London police leaning towards rival dancer Jenny as the prime suspect as she and the deceased had a public dispute.
Liberty thinks otherwise, but there is mounting pressure to execute Jenny, already convicted by the public, the media, and the cops, for the murder. To prevent a double injustice of the wrong person being hung while the real killer is free, Liberty investigates ably assisted by Amos the groom. They begin to unravel a series of murky deceptions in which the influential and the downtrodden are tied together in secrecy.
The sequel to A FOREIGN AFFAIR is a terrific early Victorian whodunit that uses real historical persons to anchor time and place. Liberty is an intelligent sleuth and her sidekick Amos serves as a sort of Watson. The mystery is cleverly devised with fabulous plausible spins and misdirections as Caro peacock furbishes an entertaining early nineteenth century investigative tale.