A Most Intriguing Lady by Sarah Ferguson, Duchess of York #BookReview

From Sarah Ferguson, the Duchess of York, a sweeping, romantic compulsively readable historical saga about a Duke’s daughter–the perfect Victorian lady–who secretly moonlights as an amateur sleuth for high society’s inner circle.

Victorian London was notorious for its pickpockets. But in the country houses of the elite, gentleman burglars, art thieves and con men preyed on the rich and titled. Wealthy victims–with their pride and reputation at stake–would never go to the police. What they needed was a society insider, one of their own, a person of discretion and finely tuned powers of observation.

That person was Lady Mary Montagu Douglas Scott, the youngest child of Queen Victoria’s close friends the Duke and Duchess of Buccleuch. Bookish, fiercely intelligent, and a keen observer, Mary has deliberately cultivated a mousey persona that allows her to remain overlooked and significantly underestimated by all. It’s the perfect cover for a sleuth, a role she stumbles into when trying to assist a close friend during a house party hosted by her parents at their stately Scottish home, Drumlanrig Castle.

It is at this party where Lady Mary also meets Colonel Walter Trefusis, a distinguished and extremely handsome war veteran. Tortured by memories of combat, Walter, like Mary, lives a double life, with a desk job in Whitehall providing a front for his role in the British Intelligence Service. The two form an unlikely alliance to solve a series of audacious crimes–and indulge in a highly charged on-off romance.

A Most Intriguing Lady (Amazon US) (Amazon UK) (Audible) (AbeBooks Used Book Marketplace)

I can’t believe it’s been a year since I reviewed the Duchess of York’s first historical fiction novel, #HerHeartForACompass. I thoroughly enjoyed the Victorian era book and was happy to see another book in the same vein being released.

Mills and Boon books are not my normal sort of books, but I do enjoy a good Victorian story. Lady Mary is the youngest and much forgotten daughter of the Duke and Duchess of Buccleuch. All previous attempts to marry her off have failed, and being a woman of modern sensibilities, she’s not sure she wants to get tied down to a man.

Mary discovers she’s good at solving mysteries in a subtle way. And she’s found a love interest, although given the style of the book, there’s no ripping bodice scenes, that’s for sure. Rather, what we have here is a book set during the Victorian period, written in the manner of Victorian novels of the day, but with modern sensibilities. I have a tendency to like books written in this style, and thoroughly enjoyed this light mystery/romance. The thorough notes afterward were very helpful disseminating fact from fiction.

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