Sunday 29 January 2023

Murder At The Seven Dials (A Bow Street Duchess Mystery Book 1) by Cara Devlin (2023)


A murdered opera singer. A duke drenched in her blood. For Bow Street Officer Hugh Marsden, the brutal killing is a straightforward case. Ever since his exile from polite society, the chance to arrest a high and mighty peer of the realm has never presented itself. Hugh won’t snub the opportunity now.

But Audrey Sinclair, the Duchess of Fournier, is certain her husband is wrongly accused, and she’s determined to prove it to the arrogant Bow Street officer, even if she must employ her most peculiar ability—or perhaps curse—to guide her investigation. After all, a duchess can do as she pleases.

Exasperated with the meddling duchess, Hugh is convinced she is protecting her own secrets, and the duke’s. But when Audrey’s discoveries persuade him to believe the true killer is still at large, he has no choice but to join her in the hunt—if only to keep her from becoming the next victim.

Oh, I really loved this book. Everything about it appealed to me; historical, murder, paranormal, romance and mystery. 

The Duchess and Hugh become unlikely allies after her husband is arrested for the murder of an opera singer. Hugh is certain he has the right man until the evidence starts to create doubt in his mind. He and Audrey keep crossing paths as she conducts her own investigation and they eventually begin to trust one another and work together. I enjoyed watching them become friends and the spark between them will surely lead to more sexual tension in the next book.

The main characters all have interesting backstories. There is still some mystery surrounding Hugh's past but there is enough to understand his background and it will be interesting to find out more as the series progresses. 
I liked Audrey's husband, Philip and it leads me to worry about whether there is an impending death for him somewhere along the line to eventually allow Audrey and Hugh to marry.
Hugh's eyes and ears on the street, the boy he calls Sir, was a cute addition and I hope he gets involved in more cases and is rewarded well.

The murder of the opera singer was brutal. It set an ominous and suspenseful tone to the story as Audrey began her investigations by interviewing people any of whom could potentially be the cold-blooded killer. 
I found this book difficult to put down and I finished reading it fairly quickly. 
I can't wait until March for the next book in the series, Death at Fournier Downs.

A well-deserved five stars for Murder At The Seven Dials. 

1 comment: