Alright, so I completely forgot to review this book when I read it, so you’ll have to forgive me if I’m a little fuzzy on some of the details at this point.
I sort of stumbled on this book and thought it was some sort of new, unknown author or something because I had never heard of him. Turns out, I really just live under a rock or something because everyone in the world knows C.S. Harris aside from me. That is really neither here nor there, it was just something funny that happened when I told a couple of people “So, I found this pretty great author, C.S. Harris.” “Uh, yeah, I know about him. Most people who like historical mysteries do.” “Really??” So, yeah.
Anyway, to the point. This is the first Sebastian St. Cyr Mystery so a lot of the story is getting to know the rakish, misunderstood rogue. He’s a Viscount Devlin, and his very power father’s only surviving son. After a falling out he ran off with the army to the Napoleonic Wars, where he proved himself to be brave, fast, extremely adept with weapons and can basically see in the dark. He also pretty much lost all faith in humanity. Since he’s been back, he spends his time cavorting around London, partying and basically getting into as many duels as he can without getting caught. I do like that he has an actual, real medical condition to explain some of his aptitudes and enhanced senses. It’s a silly thing, but I like that it isn’t just “I dunno, I guess I’m just super awesome.”
So, this is his life until a beautiful, young actress is found brutally murdered in an old church with his dueling pistol lying nearby. He is the obvious suspect, though he can’t explain to the police that he couldn’t have done it because he has an alibi… The wife of another man. The other issue is if he proves it wasn’t him without finding the real culprit that means the next most obvious suspect is his father, who he knows is innocent as well. Thus the plot thickens.
I know enough folks have read this that you don’t need me to tell you it’s a good book, but it is. I’ll probably keep going in the series eventually. I find, though that with series like these it’s good to put some space between books. What feels like a writer’s quirk when books are read one at a time can quickly become tedious if too many are read too close together.