Genre: Historical Mystery
Setting: London, in the time following the Great London Fire of 1666.
First Sentence: Christopher Redmayne found conversations with his elder brother rather trying at times.
This novel is the second in Marston's Restoration series.
Mrs. Harriet Gow is the darling of the London theater scene. She is a suburb actress with a beautiful singing voice. Because of her beauty and talent she is besieged by multitudes of male admirers. Most of which can only adore her from afar. Some, however, have a more intimate relationship with her.
Christopher Redmayne is a young architect. He is struggling to make a name for himself in London. While he is occupied building a home for a wealthy admirer of Mrs. Gow, he receives a summons to visit the King. Christopher must also bring Constable Bale with him. Due to the success of past services, the King feels that he can count on Redmayne and Bale for help with sensitive matters.
It seems that Mrs. Gow has been kidnapped and is being held for ransom. The King wishes his relationship with Mrs. Gow to be kept secret for two reasons: first, the fact that Mrs. Gow is married would cause a scandal, and secondly he doesn't have enough ready cash to pay the ransom.
So, Christopher and constable Bale must investigate without revealing the King's interest in the case.
Will Christopher and Bale find Mrs. Gow before the kidnappers act on their threat to kill her if the ransom isn't paid?
Edward Marston is one of my favorite authors. I enjoy his easy-to-read style of writing. In this novel I was baffled until the reveal.
For me, this was an enjoyable novel that was fun to read.