Review by Publisher's Weekly Review
Set in 1882, Kasasian's sparkling debut introduces a memorable new detective duo. Twenty-one-year-old March Middleton, on the death of her father, decides to accept the offer of Sidney Grice, the godfather she has never met, to live with him in London. When she discovers that Grice is a personal detective-the word "private," he insists, is best reserved for bedrooms-March insists on being involved. Her first opportunity arrives with Mrs. Grace Dillinger, who wants Grice to prove that her son-in-law, William Ashby, is innocent of her daughter's murder. Despite March's protests, Grice becomes convinced of Ashby's guilt. Playful references suggest that Arthur Conan Doyle will model Sherlock Holmes on Grice. But unlike Holmes and Watson, the feisty, gin-swigging Middleton and irascible, mercenary Grice are evenly matched in both brains and determination. Their clever sparring, the appealing secondary characters, and an ingenious plot bode well for future installments. (Feb.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Review by Kirkus Book Review
A Victorian detective solves a mystery but meets his match in his independent-minded young ward. Although March Middleton, the orphaned daughter of an army doctor, had an unconventional upbringing, she's still not quite prepared for a new life in London with her godfather and guardian, renowned detective Sidney Grice. Vain, arrogant and dapper, with a glass eye and a sardonic tongue, Grice has little use for Mrs. Grace Dillinger, a prospective client who can't afford his fees. When she pleads on behalf of her son-in-law William Ashby, an ironmonger accused of stabbing his wife to death, March offers to foot the bill if she's allowed to accompany Grice in his investigation. The unlikely duo explore the back alleys of London, examine corpses and blood spatter, interview an Italian opera singer, and evaluate the result of a recently developed blood test that proves to Grice's and a jury's satisfaction that Ashby is guilty. When a missing knife and a recovered wig suggest that Grice is wrong, he pursues the case even more relentlessly. He triumphs, but March still gets the better of him: the biggest satisfaction in a tale rich in gory detail and glass-eyeball gags. Kasasian's debut is an unflinching look at the darker side of Victorian London and a portrait of a heroine strong enough to stand up to a thoroughly disagreeable detective. Clever plotting, morbid humor and colorful characters are a greater treat for the mind than the heart--or the stomach.]] Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
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