Death at Dawn * Caro Peacock

Thomas Jacques Lane – radical, romantic, scholar and devoted father – had led an unconventional life but of one thing his daughter, Liberty, is certain: he would never have taken part in a duel. So when she receives a note informing her of his death in just such a manner, Liberty ignores all advice and sets off in pursuit of the truth.

With no resources bar her wits, she travels to the Continent and back in search of her father’s killer. And as the nation prepares for the coronation of a young Victoria, Liberty uncovers murder and treachery at the very highest levels

Caro Peacock

Do you like Victorian Suffragettes looking for the truth? Do you like Historical fiction? Stories about secret societies? The young heroine, Liberty Lane, has run off from her disapproving aunt to find her father, killed in a duel in Calais. As she tries to determine what her father’s last days were like, she encounters a strange man in black on the dueling grounds, is abducted by a sinister lord at the burial ground, rescues herself, meets a kind hearted young lady willing to help, and eventually returns to Dover. In Dover, with dwindling resources, she finds that her father had won a race horse, who has been brought to England by a kind-hearted farm hand of massive size and is confronted by the stange man in black, a fellow Mason like her father. He offers to help her find and avenge her father’s death in return for taking a position as governess and spying on Sir Manderville.

Once in place at Manderville Hall, the action picks up and the rest of the novel moves quickly. Aided by an unlikely family member and helping the young lady of the house escape a forced marriage (and, yes, it is the kind hearted young lady met in Calais), Liberty uncovers a treasonous plot, rescues a drugged “witness”, discovers her father’s killer and escapes with the help of a family friend (and Mason) and the gentle giant farm hand.

1/5 – Charity pile


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