Spoiler warning! This is the fifth book in an ongoing series, and as such, this review may and probably will contain spoilers for earlier books. If you’re not caught up, go start at the beginning, with A Study in Scarlet Women.
Official book description:
Inspector Treadles, Charlotte Holmes’s friend and collaborator, has been found locked in a room with two dead men, both of whom worked with his wife at the great manufacturing enterprise she has recently inherited.
Rumours fly. Had Inspector Treadles killed the men because they had opposed his wife’s initiatives at every turn? Had he killed in a fit of jealous rage, because he suspected Mrs Treadles of harbouring deeper feelings for one of the men? To make matters worse, he refuses to speak on his own behalf, despite the overwhelming evidence against him.
Charlotte finds herself in a case strewn with lies and secrets. But which lies are to cover up small sins, and which secrets would flay open a past better left forgotten? Not to mention, how can she concentrate on these murders, when Lord Ingram, her oldest friend and sometime lover, at last dangles before her the one thing she has always wanted?
For some reason, I got the impression when reading the fourth book in this series, either through interviews with the author or from some website or other, that this was going to be the final book in the series. I’m very happy to discover that I was wrong, and rather than being a heavily “arc-based” story, this feels more like a bridging book in the series. In the last book, most of our characters went off to France to pull off an audacious art heist. In this book, Charlotte Holmes and Lord Ingram have to work together against a ticking clock to clear the name of their friend, Inspector Threadles, who was arrested after being found, covered in blood and brandishing his service revolver, in a locked room standing over two dead bodies. Both of the men had a close connection to Mrs. Threadles.
Full review on my blog