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The Royal Assassin
Victorian Bookshop Mystery # 3
Kate Parker

7/7/2015/ ISBN
Mystery / Cozy / Historical / England / Victorian Era

Reviewed by Brenda Weeaks


Georgia Fenchurch is back in her third Victorian mystery. Georgia owns a bookshop in London and has a cat named Dickens. She is also a member of the Archivist Society run by Sir Broderick. Sir Broderick has an injury that adds a little intrigue to his past and links him to Georgia’s parents. The Archivist Society is a crime solving group, and the Victorian flair makes their work all the more intriguing. The mystery begins with the Duke of Blackford arriving at Georgia’s shop and requesting she join him undercover, again. The thought of going under anything with the Duke has Georgia tripping over herself. She may be a middle class shop keeper, but she can dream, can’t she? The case at hand involves Scotland Yard, Anarchists and the Russians. It seems a Russian princess is now engaged to the Duke of Sussex, the Queen’s Cousin. Her guard was murdered, which means the princess maybe the target of an assassin. And speaking of the Queen, this mystery has her celebrating the longest reign as a monarch -- that is, if the Anarchists behave. Back to princess Kira: she and her chaperone argue a lot and sound like a couple of high-pitched harpies – one young and one old. Sometimes it’s funny and sometimes it’s irritating. Kira is a gifted painter. She wants her marriage to gain her freedom from her parents and Russia. Georgia goes undercover as Kira’s secretary and discovers she is not only vain and spoiled, she has secrets, and Georgia is giving her enough rope to hang herself – figuratively. To add to the chaos, another Russian bodyguard shows up and delivers a humorous scene or two with Georgia. Also in the storyline, the Archivist Society is trying to solve an explosion and robbery at the Marquis of Shepherdston’s home at the same time. Both cases move from investigative to downright dangerous for all involved, including Georgia’s and the Duke’s personal employees.

The Royal Assassin is written in first person, so readers get to experience Georgia’s sense of humor first hand. Georgia is a strong female lead character and the Duke is one Prince Charming of a sidekick. Kate Parker expertly blends action and the occasional quirky scene into a Victorian backdrop. The secondary characters are just as strong and busy as the lead characters, so pay attention. I really enjoyed reading The Royal Assassin - Georgia’s humor, the Duke’s warm tone, and those harpy Russians stayed with me long after the story ended. If you enjoy a little humor with your historical cozy mystery, you have to try the Victorian Bookshop series.

Reviewed 2015