Garden of Sins
A Victorian Mystery #6
by Laura Joh Rowland
Release date: January 11th, 2022
I received a complimentary ARC copy of Garden of Sins A Victorian Mystery Book No. 6 by Laura Joh Rowland from Net Galley & Crooked Lane Books in order to read and give an honest review.
… a captivating read, I still enjoyed the twists and turns which this series is well known for…
I have been a fan of Laura Joh Rowland’s Victorian Mystery series since reviewing the first entry, and I have been fortunate enough to read and review all the books in this series. Although I found this book very entertaining, I did not enjoy it quite as much as the previous books in this series, although each are fast paced, this almost seemed to have too much going on.
The story opens with newlyweds Crime Scene Photographer, Sarah Bain and her new husband Detective Sergeant Thomas Barrett traveling by train through London when the train suddenly derails. Being true to their natures Sarah and Thomas begin searching the wreckage for other survivors stumbling across the body of a woman who perished in the crash, upon closer inspection they realize that the woman was had been strangled. They immediately begin to investigate the case and when it leads them to a member of the Royal Family, Scotland Yard recruits them for a top-secret mission to uncover the truth while preserving the reputation of the monarchy. During the investigation they learn the victim was a Pinkerton detective who had traveled to England in search of a missing American heiress. Clues lead them to Cremorne Gardens, a combination of part freak show, part circus and part theatre which hides murderous secrets.
Grittier than her previous books in the series Garden of Sins, I feel, the author overwhelms with too many incidents occurring. In addition to the investigation Sarah faces, an incident with Thomas and his ex-fiancé which places a heavy strain on their marriage, she is trying to uncover the truth and save her father who is on trial for the murder of a young woman twenty years prior, Hugh is despondent and malingering after the events from Portrait of Peril, and nasty Inspector Reid is out for vengeance doing everything he can to get Sarah to share what she knows about Jack the Ripper. Although it was not my favourite in the series it was still a captivating read, I still enjoyed the twists and turns which this series is well known for. The book is an entertaining fun read I would highly recommend. It would work as a stand-alone, however I really recommend reading the books in order.