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What Darkness Brings
A Sebastian St. Cyr Mystery #8
C S Harris

NAL Hardcover
March 2013 / ISBN-: 045123927X
Historical Mystery / British

Reviewed by Brenda Weeaks


At what point do the last barriers drop?
When are the final secrets revealed?

--Sebastian St Cyr

Sebastian St Cyr and Hero are back as well as Kat and her pirate. This time it's a tale of Death, Jewels and Sweepers. It all begins when Sebastian St Cyr is called to the scene of a dead man - the man is a good friend. Was it a chronic disease or suicide? When Sebastian breaks the news to the widow, he finds there's more to their personal problems than his friend's illness.

In his second case Sebastian agrees to assist Kat's Pirate - Yates. Yates is accused of killing a gem dealer named Eisler - a sleazy old man known for his riches, ill-gotten gains and devious loan tactics. The richest are in debt to Eisler, which means suspects abound and grievers are none. Sebastian is surrounded by enemies, both new and old, which keeps him on the alert and more determined to get justice for all involved.

Sebastian takes the lead in the storyline. He confides in Hero as he works the cases. She follows the occasional lead for him as well as her own work, interviewing Sweepers -young children who clean the street of mud and manure so the wealthy don't get dirty. Hero discovers some urchins do more than sweep which opens Sebastian's hooded eyes and reminds us of the hard times during that era.

There is a touch of romance as in most mysteries. Readers may think Hero and Sebastian have settled in for a long-term relationship but something happens that may change that… the carriage scene certainly took me by surprise. So many secrets between the two - will their personal commitment survive them?

When I think about this story I remember Sebastian breaking into Eisler's house and how the author  added humor to an action scene without taking away from the gravity of the storyline. The black cat was a nice touch. We all know cats chose his/her owner not the other way around. It looks like a solider and horseman is about to get a lesson in cats.

What Darkness Brings is a satisfying tale of intrigue. It's a well-written, fast paced, Dark storyline. But let me clarify that it's Dark without the Hollywood gore. It's great addition to the widely popular series.

I didn't try this series until midway through and I regret it.  I thought it was another historical romance hiding under a historical mystery cover. IT'S NOT. Readers can expect a complex series masterly weaved into a realistic historical period. The characters are fascinating enough to keep this series going indefinitely.

Reviews of other titles in the series

What Angels Fear # 1
When Gods Die # 2
Where Serpents Sleep # 4
Where Shadows Dance # 6
When Maidens Mourn #7 [review 1] [review 2]
What Darkness Brings #8
Why Kings Confess # 9 [review 1] [review 2]
Who Buries the Dead #10 [review 1] [review 2]

Reviewed 2013