Series: The Bloodstone Series Book 1
Author: Chris Karlsen
Format: Kindle Edition, 301 pages
Published: December 14th 2014 by Books to Go Now
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N
Rating: 3 out of 5 Wine Glasses
It is the time of Jack the Ripper, the widowed Queen Victoria sits on the throne of England. The whole of London is on edge wondering when or where Jack will kill next. The Palace, Parliament, and the press are demanding the police do more to find him.
In another part of London, rough-around-the-edges war hero, Metropolitan Detective Inspector Rudyard Bloodstone has his own serial killer to find. Inter departmental rivalries, politics, and little evidence to go on hamper the investigation at every turn. In a battle of wills, Bloodstone presses forward following his instincts in spite of the obstacles.
Adding to those problems, away from the strains of the investigation, he is engaged in the ups and downs of a new relationship with a lovely hat maker.
With little effort, he rolled his late lover off the edge of the cliff and watched, grimacing, when her dainty body bounced off a rocky outcropping. True, he planned on packing her back to France, or to another of his associates. And true, he didn't see her death as a great loss, but he wouldn't have wished her bashed on the rocks, even in death. However, this was the most expedient way to rid himself of an inconveniently dead mistress.
SILK by Chris Karlsen is a who-done-it murder mystery. If you're looking for Victorian era crime fiction, you'll inhale this super-sleuth thriller. My mother absolutely loved this type of book. Just reading the cover blurb of What would you do to stay young: Lie, Manipulate..kill? would have had her fully committed to read it and she would have stayed up all night until she'd read the last word.
I became a fan of Chris' books with her time travel romances. They're all fantastic. SILK was a departure for me. I found it to be a bit heavy for my taste but, once I started it, I had to finish it just to find out what happened. There's only a tad of romance included; so if you're looking for a romance, you will want to look elsewhere.
Metropolitan Detective Inspector Rudyard Bloodstone was our hero in this book on the trail of the serial killer Rudyard was a former war hero and worked as a detective akin to Sherlock Holmes in Jack-the-Ripper's dark London. The story, itself, took place not only in London but also in other areas of England. Chris' scene descriptions are very well done - you will feel that you are in each scene.
Allegra played the part of Rudyard's love interest with aplomb. She was a widow running her own hat shop and Rudyard meets her as he's following a trail of clues. Their romance is very low-key and definitely on the sidelines of the primary story, but their welcome interlude provides just the right touch of light-hearted relief to the darkness of the tale.
Following please find a few of my favorite quotes from this read:
"Apology accepted. If you're finished Mrs. Porter ---"
"Fine. If you're finished, Allegra, I'd like to go."
Good Lord, but the woman was a blister that refused to pop.
Deciphering the rabbit warren that made up the minds of most women was never his strong suit. All he could do was ask for clarification. "Allegra, are you flirting with me?"
Her thumb stopped its stroking. "Um, yes. Am I not doing it right?"
"I see. Because I'm not hideous, not a drunkard, and appear to bathe regularly, you picked me. How you flatter me.
Chris's writing is top-notch, as always. Her police background comes to the forefront superbly in Silk. It's obvious she knows of what she writes. With well-drawn characters and a well-plotted, intense story that keeps the adrenaline climbing with plenty of intriguing suspense, this story will keep readers guessing - and gasping - right up to a satisfying ending. You'll find yourself desperately trying to decipher the clues with Rudyard as you read. I highly recommend SILK to anyone who enjoys murder mysteries.