Audiobook review: A Conspiracy in Belgravia
Author: Sherry Thomas
Narrator: Kate Reading
Audio Speed: 1.5x
Series: Lady Sherlock #2
Genre: Historical Mystery
A Conspiracy in Belgravia is the wonderful sophomore story of the Lady Sherlock series! After a bit of a confusing start in the previous book, now I am familiar with the author’s writing style, and the primary characters and world have been established, so I was able focus on the primary story right from the start. Overall, the story is more streamlined – in that there was no need for extensive backstory this time around. I also felt that the overall mystery is more interesting and better crafted. I was engrossed from the beginning – what a story!
Charlotte is quickly learning how to play the part of Sherlock while navigating London to achieve her goals. Her friendship with Mrs. Watson is wonderful and fulfilling, and watching each learn how to trust the other gives the story heart. The addition of Mrs. Watson’s niece allows Charlotte more flexibility in her work, as well as provides another confident for Charlotte, who is learning how to be a friend in return.
The well-crafted mystery is the best part of A Conspiracy in Belgravia. The plot is smart and challenging, but interesting and exciting. I love how all the pieces tied together and yet still came with a shocking twist. The play between Lord Ingram and Charlotte; soulmates who are fated to always be apart, is riveting and brings joy to my romantic heart. They care for one another so deeply, but even if both were unattached, it would never work. Add in Charlotte’s sister Livia’s journey finding own path; it’s all so engaging!
Narration: The story is shared from multiple third-person POVs, both male and female; however, I felt this time around, Charlotte was more present than in the first story. Ms. Reading has a fairly deep, feminine, accented voice. The dialogue is altered based on who is speaking – enough to identify that it is more than one person speaking, and most characters are assigned a specific voice. Ms. Reading’s male voices are fairly deep and genuine. The story is narrated with an English accent – adjusted to fit the social class of the speaker. There is an overall narrator with a feminine voice, which is slightly different than Charlotte, so it’s not confusing. At 1.5x, the narration at times is slightly faster than I may want, but not usually noticeable, and it is a comfortable speaking speed for me.
Overall, A Conspiracy in Belgravia is a smart, witty, well-crafted story that left me craving to start the third story immediately.
About the Book:
Being shunned by Society gives Charlotte Holmes the time and freedom to put her extraordinary powers of deduction to good use. As “Sherlock Holmes, consulting detective,” aided by the capable Mrs. Watson, she’s had great success helping with all manner of inquiries, but she’s not prepared for the new client who arrives at her Upper Baker Street office.
Lady Ingram, wife of Charlotte’s dear friend and benefactor, wants Sherlock Holmes to find her first love, who failed to show up at their annual rendezvous. Matters of loyalty and discretion aside, the case becomes even more personal for Charlotte as the missing man is none other than Myron Finch, her illegitimate half brother.
In the meanwhile, Charlotte wrestles with a surprising proposal of marriage, a mysterious stranger woos her sister Livia, and an unidentified body that surfaces where least expected. Charlotte’s investigative prowess is challenged as never before: Can she find her brother in time—or will he, too, end up as a nameless corpse somewhere in the belly of London?