In Victoria Thompson's Murder on Astor Place, the first installment in the Gaslight Historical Mystery Series, this tale would captivate you and grip you with riveting storytelling. Set in the late 1890s, Sarah Brandt is a widow and a midwife in New York City, when Theodore Roosevelt was police commissioner. When she arrived for a birthing of a baby, she recognized someone from her past. Before she knew it, it was too late, when she found her... dead by strangulation. That's when NYC Police Detective Frank Malloy was on the scene, a widower with a crippled baby boy to raise for his own, who had butted heads with Sarah. When she identified the victim of Alicia VanDamm, one of the daughters of the most prominent families in NYC, the daughter of Sarah's closest childhood friend. When the Van Damm had encouraged Malloy to be removed from the case, he prompted Sarah to do the snooping and find justice for the family by finding the killer. She would have to stoop so low to look for answers with Malloy's help and asking for people for answers, even to listening to gossip from her mother and snooping around to ask Mina, her friend herself. As soon as they learn about the diary being stolen, another death had befallen on the VanDamm property. Before she knew it, during a raging thunderstorm, she had pieced the truth together with Malloy on their own sordid family secrets of sins, and why she had to be killed with a gripping ending.
This was an amazing read in a gripping setting to take place in the 1890s without DNA and other high tech methods to prosecute criminals. I cared for Sarah's and Frank's plight and what they had to do to make ends meet. I've found something with iffy with Mina's uncharacteristic behavior and how sickened in the end to learn about the truth to learn about their sordid family secrets. I did feel bad for Alicia who had dealt with the secrecy before she died. I loved the NYC setting in the 1890s and how picturesque it was at that time wen things weren't so simple for the rich and the poor. This mystery would leave you hanging at the end of your seat from start to finish with drama, non-stop action, intrigue, and a hint of suspense, too.
Will you be a witness to see the Murder on Astor Place? Give it a read today!
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