Sharing Books and Authors, with an emphasis on Mysteries.
Tuesday, January 04, 2011
India Black by Carol K. Carr
It's always so much fun to discover a mystery writer's debut book, and have the chance to introduce readers to the book. Fans of historical mysteries should enjoy Carol K. Carr's debut, India Black. It's called "A Madam of Espionage Mystery." Carr's series promises to be entertaining, suspenseful, and filled with delightful characters, alongside historical figures of Victorian England such as Disraeli and Gladstone.
India Black tells her own story of a death that led to her involvement in intrigue on behalf of the British government. She's a whore, although she's risen from working to running her own establishment, Lotus House. She's a shrewd businesswoman, catering to gentlemen, "Junior ministers, high-ranking civil servants, minor aristocracy, and military officers." However, as shrewd as she is, she's in trouble when Sir Archibald Latham dies in her house. It seems he worked for the War Office, and carried important government papers with him when he arrived at the house that day. While India planned to hide the body, with the help of a street urchin named Vincent, those papers disappeared. It was only when she and Vincent were discovered by French, a mysterious man who worked for the government, that she learned about those documents. With a little pressure from French, and some of the most important men in the government, India agreed to take on the difficult task of recovering those papers. Britain's relationship with the Russians and the Ottoman Empire could depend on it.
India Black is a book filled with Russian spies, kidnapping, cliff-hanging moments, danger, traps, and exciting escapes. Carr weaves India's adventures in with the historical facts of the problems of 1876 England. Best of all, she creates fascinating characters, India Black, French, and the likable streetwise urchin, Vincent. India is intelligent, streetwise herself, cool under pressure. It's going to be fun to read about the future adventures of this unlikely assistant to the British government.