5 stars, Book Review, historical, historical mystery, Jack the Ripper, Kerrigan Byrne, mystery, series, thriller, Victorian England
Review of A Treacherous Trade
Fiona’s job of cleaning up after dead bodies (postmortem sanitation specialist) pays well, especially when it leads to not-quite-legal side jobs for a crime boss. It allows her to be independent in an era where single women are generally not taken care of. It also puts her in contact with the death of prostitutes. Which causes her to get involved with finding justice for the women, since the police have no interest in solving the murders.
A Treacherous Trade contains plenty of twists and turns to lead Fiona down several trails, following up on leads. Just about everyone she comes into contact with falls under suspicion. This keeps the reader guessing – just like this reader likes it.
This book has many fascinating characters, including a cop, an organized crime boss, an assassin, Oscar Wilde, and a psychic aunt. Each deftly carries out their vital part in the story. There are no less than 3 men who seem to be attracted to Fiona who is steadfastly single, with no intentions of marrying. Fiona may end up fighting some small attraction to one or more of them.
Jack the Ripper, who was responsible for the murder of Fiona’s friend (backstory) is in the background in this book. The Ripper is always on Fiona’s mind though, and will be in the picture for the foreseeable future – if my guess is correct.
Book 2 in the Fiona Mahoney Mystery series has all the same exquisite, sinister qualities that I appreciated in the first book: 1) a protagonist with a dark side, 2) supporting characters that are eccentric, fascinating, vital, and often equally dark, 3) and the gloomy, shadowy city of London for the story setting. A Treacherous Trade is completely stand alone. But, like the first book in the series, the last chapter is a teaser for the next book which looks to be due out in October.
Thanks to the publisher who provided a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.
About A Treacherous Trade by Kerrigan Byrne
Nothing interrupts a good confession like a murder.
Fiona Mahoney stands in the ashes of her hopes facing her tempting adversary, Inspector Grayson Croft. Her sins are about to spill from her lips, when he says the one thing that could dispel all thoughts of revelation or redemption.
Someone is leaving the corpses of prostitutes in the streets, and a name is being whispered in the fearful shadows. The name against which Fiona would sell her very soul for vengeance.
Jack the Ripper.
Only the promise of justice could entice Fiona to do something as reckless and daring as infiltrating the ranks of elite courtesans who accept the threat of violence as a nightly norm. She quickly learns that sin and scandal are powerfully compelling motives for murder, and that the secrets of the dead are sometimes worth keeping… if only to avoid becoming the next victim.
When the danger becomes too deadly to face alone, Fiona is forced to call upon old enemies and new friends including “the Hammer” a charismatic gangster, and “the Blade” an enigmatic assassin, and maybe even the Ripper, himself. Who better to help pursue a relentless evil than the devil you know?
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