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Tuesday, July 9, 2024

A Vicious Machination by Lynn Messina


The setting is one I like. England at a crossroads but many people hardly able to survive. The aristocracy had it on a platter - money, freedom, laws and judiciary which would invariably rule in their favour.

The Duchess of Kesgrave Bea , recently wed, is an investigator of repute.  She is trying to reconcile the illegitimate half sister of her husband with the family, but finds herself in the middle of a drama. Miss Lark, the half sister was found at a murder scene weapon in hand by a Bow Street runner who just happened to be passing by. An open and shut case particularly since the victim and the suspect had terrible history between them.

Bea realises she is against a formidable enemy but she is resourceful and brave. Unraveling a plethora and a history of blackmail on the part of the victim leaves many, many suspects in line. Each has to be investigated but time is running out. 

Meticulous detection is the key and the Duke and Duchess work closely to see that justice is done. The story also highlights the appalling conditions in orphanages, and the abuses that children faced by the very people who were in charge of them.

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