Somewhere to review books I'm reading without giving away any spoilers!
Series: An Alexandra Gladstone Mystery
Author: Paula Paul
Publishers: Random House, Alibi
Date of Publication: April 12th, 2016
This is the second novel in this series that I’ve had the pleasure to read – the first was Medium Dead. They both have Dr Alexandra Gladstone, her maid and friend, Nancy and the local Lord and suitor of Alex, Nicholas Forsyth, Lord Dunsford as the main characters. Set in Victorian England, this was a time when females were not expected to be educated and Alex is very unusual in being a fully qualified Doctor, taking over the practice of her deceased father in the village of Newton-upon-Sea. Most villagers are happy to receive treatment for their ills from her but some resent her gender. In this story the murders of local Freemasons who are involved in protecting the Temple of the Ninth Daughter are the triggers for Alex to investigate, putting not only her own life in danger but those of others close to her as she seeks to identify the murderer before more villagers become victims.
This works well as a standalone story, with well crafted characters at the heart of the story. It has an intriguing plot and plenty of twists and turns together with historical background information regarding women’s rights in that era. Whilst the endeavours to identify the murderer are, naturally, a serious matter, the story itself also has humorous times as the well portrayed characters interact. The relationships between different characters are also continuing to evolve and develop – and I still hope that Nicholas and Alex will, eventually, give in to their mutual attraction despite their social differences which were so significant in that era. This is an entertaining historical murder mystery that I thoroughly enjoyed and have no hesitation in recommending to anyone who enjoys this genre.
I was gifted a copy of this novel via NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.
Hailed as “an intriguing mixture of mystery, romance, and history” by Lois Duncan, the Alexandra Gladstone series from award-winning author Paula Paul continues as an ominous horseman heralds the emergence of a secret society, hidden riches—and a string of chilling murders.
The Temple of the Ninth Daughter sits on a hill at the edge of Newton-upon-Sea, an aura of mystery lingering over its tall, gray silhouette. Villagers whisper about the treasure housed inside, protected by local Freemasons who are bound by clandestine oaths.
Dr. Alexandra Gladstone has no time for such nonsense. Between the patients in her surgery and the rounds she makes with her faithful dog, Zack, her days are busy enough. But Alexandra has no logical explanation when the Freemasons start dying, one by one, with no sign of foul play other than smears of blood on their Masonic aprons. And what to make of reports that a Knight Templar rides through the village before each passing?
After the constable disappears in the midst of the crisis, Alexandra reaches out to her dashing, diligent friend, Nicholas Forsythe, Lord Dunsford, for assistance. Is someone after the treasure, or might a more sinister game be afoot? In order to solve this puzzle, Alexandra must somehow catch a killer who shows no remorse—and leaves no witnesses.
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Also check out my review for ‘Medium Dead‘ by this author!