The first in a clever and charming new crime series that will immediately delight all fans of Agatha Christie and Alexander McCall Smith.
Mrs. Laetitia Rodd, aged fifty-two, is the widow of an archdeacon. Living in Hampstead with her confidante and landlady, Mrs. Bentley, who once let rooms to John Keats, Laetitia makes her living as a highly discreet private investigator.
Her brother, Frederick Tyson, is a criminal barrister living in the neighboring village of Highgate with his wife and ten children. Frederick finds the cases, and Laetitia solves them using her arch intelligence, her iron discretion, and her immaculate cover as an unsuspecting widow. When Frederick brings to her attention a case involving the son of the well-respected, highly connected Sir James Calderstone, Laetitia sets off for Lincolnshire to take up a position as the family’s new governess--quickly making herself indispensable.But the seemingly simple case--looking into young Charles Calderstone’s “inappropriate” love interest--soon takes a rather unpleasant turn. And as the family’s secrets begin to unfold, Laetitia discovers the Calderstones have more to hide than most.
Dickensian in its scope and characters,The Secrets of Wishtide brings nineteenth century society vividly to life and illuminates the effect of Victorian morality on women’s lives. Introducing an irresistible new detective, the first book in the Laetitia Rodd Mystery series will enthrall and delight.
"A Dickensian glow pervades this immensely satisfying novel. Hugely enjoyable." - James Runcie, author of The Grantchester Mysteries
"Kate Saunders immerses us in Victorian England in this delightful new series. You’ll love Laetitia Rodd and her charming cohorts as they unravel an intriguing tangle of mysteries to save the innocent and punish the guilty. I couldn’t put it down!" - Victoria Thompson, bestselling author of MURDER IN MORNINGSIDE HEIGHTS
"Saunders’s protagonist sheds a sympathetic light on the plight of women in the rigid moral climate of Victorian England. Readers who relish the puzzle of a well-done Victorian-set mystery with a resourceful female detective will take pleasure in this series launch by a prolific British author and journalist." - starred review,Library Journal
"Saunders launches a well-written series with all the hallmarks of a classic British cozy." -Kirkus Reviews
"[A] lively series debut." -Publishers Weekly
"Saunders’s prose is precise and a pleasure to read. The plot twists and turns, and Laetitia is a warm and engaging heroine. The story owes a debt to DAVID COPPERFIELD and has the Dickensian quality of smuggling serious themes within its plot – about the fates of women and the weight of their virtue." -The Times (London)
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