Killing at the Carnival
By L. A. Nisula
In a Victorian England that almost existed, a steampunk London where tinkerers and clockwork devices exist alongside handsome cabs and corsets, murder is still solved by traditional observation and intuition. This is the London where American typist Cassandra Pengear finds herself stumbling corpses and helping Scotland Yard detectives solve murders (although they inexplicably prefer to call it interfering).
Cassie Pengear thought a visit to the carnival would be fun: see some shows, eat some sweets, help her landlady’s nephew decide if the cowboy was real or an actor. But then the cowboy shot the volunteer, and he didn’t get up. Now Cassie has a ten-year-old boy insisting the cowboy isn’t a killer and a landlady insisting she help solve the killing at the carnival.
It’s been quite some time since I have read a detective-mystery story in a steampunk genre. Cassie Pengear seemed to have had a history doing detective work, so when there was a killing at the carnival, she did not waste time using her sleuthing skills.
Davy and her aunt Mrs. Albright convinced Cassie to go with them to the carnival. Cassie relented and soon agreed to appease her landlady’s nephew. After all, he only wanted to see an American cowboy, amongst other things. Cowboy Nick was supposed to magically shoot and revive a man for his performance act. But this pretend play became quite real when the volunteer was shot dead, never able to get up.
Scotland Yard was all over the place (or carnival for that matter) and when opportunity presented itself, she grabbed it. Working with Inspector Burrows, Davy and carnival boy Art, they uncovered a mystery every cowboy fans would love.
Killing at the Carnival has been an exciting and quick read. The mystery of the fallen volunteer was quite entertaining and mind-boggling. I didn’t expect the result of the investigation. I had other suspects in mind which proved to be quite wrong in the end. Author L.A. Nisula wrote a really mystifying plot that isn’t boring at all. I think I’m loving Cassie and Davy’s characters and I sure would be delighted to read more about them in the next books!
Note: I received this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.