At a young age, Mary is rescued from the gallows by a woman masquerading
as a prison warden. She is taken to Miss Scrimshaw's Academy for Girls.
The school, Mary learns, is a front for a private investigation agency
and, at 17, she is taken on as an agent. In her new role she is
catapulted into the family home of the Thorolds to investigate the shady
business dealings of Mr Thorold.
This was actually a re-read for me. I read it for the first time last year, but part two in the series just came out so i wanted to refresh my memory on the events of this book.
Set in Victorian London, At the age of 12 Mary Lang is caught housebreaking and sentenced to death at the gallows, she is rescued and taken to Miss Scrimshaw's Academy for girls, which turns out to be the cover for a spy agency. At the age of 17, Mary is taken on as an agent and sent on her first job. To be a companion to Angelica Thorold, so she can get close to the family and investigate their dodgy business dealings, but not everyone there is who they seam, not even Mary herself.
I was never one to really get into Historical novels, but something about this book caught my eye, and i'm glad it did, it is very well written and researched and the story hooks you in. You really get a feel for the place (not so pleasant when discussing the 'Great Stink' which happened to the Thames when it got polluted) but this also set the scene. I found myself throughout the novel trying to guess who the criminal was or if they were in it together. Obviously having read it before, this time round i could remember odd bits and so had a feeling more where the story was going, but i still thoroughly enjoyed it. The story still seemed fresh to me and kept me captivated. I like books you can read more than once that will still grab your attention, and this is definitely one of them.
I'd have to say this is definitely on my top 10 list, as one of my favourite books. If you haven't read it, it is definitely worth it.
The author also has her own website so check that out too. :D http://yslee.com
I would give this book 10/10, full of mystery, suspense, intrigue and much more. LOVE IT!!!