Historical Mysteries to enjoy

Hi everyone, I hope the previous post got your sleuthing taste buds a-tingling!! Just to make things a bit interesting, this extra post has two similar series I found and fell in love with!! Such is the life of a librarian, all of the books I share belong to a special corner in my heart!! So, please take good care when you read them!!

The Wollstonecraft detective Agency 4 grid two girls in hot air balloon in cemetary in old house running in palace
History re-written!

Titles: The case of the missing moonstone, The case of the girl in grey, The case of the counterfeit criminals, The case of the perilous palace

Author: Jordan Stratford               

Illustrator: Kelly Murphy

Genre: Fiction – historical

Publication details: Alfred A. Knopf; NY, 2015 – 2018

What these books are about: Eleven-year-old Lady Ada Byron is a genius but quite awkward and rude. She befriends Mary Goodwin, a young girl who is somewhat adventurous and has a knack for noticing things. Together, they form the WOLLSTONECRAFT DETECTIVE AGENCY. It’s a secret constabulary because they suspect clients would not trust their problems to two young girls. (And because it would be better if their parents didn’t find out… ) In their first adventure, The case of the missing moonstone, our duo have to solve the case of a stolen heirloom by breaking into (and then out of) Newgate Prison, tell a few lies, and pursue the thief by carriage and hot air-balloon. Their second case, The case of the girl in grey, is a puzzle indeed. It involves a horrible hospital, a missing will, a hasty engagement, and a suspiciously slippery servant. Mary stumbles upon a mystery of her own when she spots a ghostly girl dashing through the park; someone with the same face as their client. Their next case, The case of the counterfeit criminals, is a cracking caper involving the blackmail of famed dinosaur fossil hunter Mary Anning. Although it seems simple enough, there are larger forces conspiring against the girls; Ada’s mother, who is determined to put a stop to it all, and a criminal mastermind with a weakness for wordplay! In their fourth adventure, The case of the perilous palace, the Wollstonecraft Detective agency has been shut down by Ada’s imperious grandmother – until they get a case from a princess, that is. The nine-year-old Princess Alexandrina Victoria (who will grow up to be Queen Victoria). She is never alone but has one special thing of her own, and this thing has disappeared. Ada and Mary must find it without arousing suspicions. This most clandestine case will have our duo breaking into Kensington Palace and uncovering a host of royal secrets…

My review: Set in an alternate time just before the great Victorian era of crime and sleuths, this delightful series of mystery novels captivated me. By using actual historical figures as his characters, Stratford brought the events of that era to life in the most wonderful way. A collection of hilarious and witty stories, all of them. You will find yourself running along with Ada and Mary, and their younger sisters. Each story has historical notes about the actual people our characters are based on. I especially liked this part as it showed me the actual historical context they’ve been taken from. I hope Jordan Stratford has some more books in store for us!! These are an awesome read for anyone who enjoys history!! This series is a great one for young girls today to learn of these exceptional women of history!

My rating: 5 ⭐

Sinclair's mysteries 4 grid sihouettes in windows men in top hats and fancy dresses on women
High society and sleuths

Titles: The Mystery of the Clockwork Sparrow, The Mystery of the Jewelled Moth, The Mystery of the Painted Dragon, The Mystery of the Midnight Peacock

Author: Katherine Woodfine

Genre: Fiction – historical

Publication details: Egmont; London, 2015 – 2017

What these books are about: You are cordially invited to attend the Grand Opening of Sinclair’s Department store. Miss Sophie Taylor and Miss Lilian Rose work for the grandest department store in London: Sinclair’s. This series of mystery books feature an adventurous duo of young girls as they solve mysteries using cunning disguises with a group of loyal friends and follow a trail of terrible secrets which leads them to London’s most dangerous criminal mastermind. In the first book they vow to bring the thief who stole the priceless Clockwork Sparrow to justice. In the second one they investigate the puzzling disappearance of a special piece of jewellery: the Jewelled Moth and find themselves mingling with London’s high society to crack the case. The third mystery, Sophie and Lil find themselves faced with forgery, trickery, and deceit on all sides! They must hatch a cunning plan to unmask the villain who stole a priceless painting and prove themselves detectives to be reckoned with – no matter what dangers lie ahead. As Sophie and Lilian spend their Christmas holidays at snowy Winter Hall in the final story they are faced with a more baffling mystery than ever before!

My review: Wow!! Such an exciting and exhilarating adventure series!! I really liked this one!! Set in London during the Edwardian era with maids, butlers, and fainting debs (Yes, it does happen!!), this lovely series focuses our attention on the young female sleuths that are Sophie and Lil!! Although throughout the series they have help from young Billy, Joe, Song and Mr Pendleton, it’s mostly the daring and courageous acts from the two girls that get the story moving. Each story brings forth additional cast, from the maid at Winter Hall, young Mei from Chinatown in the East End or art student Leo who add an extra layer to the stories. The main detectives, Sophie and Lil, to me are the cleverest of the lost!! Willing to do anything to find the truth, thwart their enemies and restore the stolen items to their rightful owners; these young girls use their deducing skills and clever plans to bring justice!! This was such an excellent set of books!! Each book can be read by themselves but reading them in order can also help. Great story from an amazing writer!! Can’t wait to see if she writes more about Sophie and Lil!!

My rating: 5 ⭐



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