My Rating 4 STARS
Thank you, to Hachette Australia and Dateabook for an early chance to read and review this book. All opinions are my own.
Coming off the greatness that was Hunting Prince Dracula, Maniscalco had some pretty big shoes to fill. I definitely believe that she filled them and then some.
Escaping From Houdini combines all the great aspects of mystery, romance, and thriller. And, it’s safe to say that this instalment is my favourite of the series. Audrey Rose has come into her own, her relationship with Thomas Cresswell has developed to such a solid place UGH it’s just so good, and the mystery in this book is nail-biting. There is something cool about trying to figure out who did it, it reminds me very much of Cluedo growing up and I guess that’s what these mystery novels are all about. #duh
BUT, add in the science of anatomy, forensics, criminology, literally just anything coroner related – I am not good at science words – but add in all that and a whole other dimension is added to the story. It’s fun getting to know what bones are where and what the insides of a person look like – not that fun actually, nevermind, the descriptions are let’s say, vivid.
Anyway, I think that’s enough kinda backstory. Audrey Rose and Thomas haven’t even taken a breath after the last mystery and already someone has managed to be murdered. And, so much more murder occurs. It’s very Game of Thrones. The mystery in this instalment is the best so far because people keep getting killed. And, I personally love when people are killed in novels because it hardly ever happens to the degree that I want it. That sounds inherently sadistic. But, the disappointment that was ACOWAR has left me scarred and I’m happy about the healthy amount of death in this book. MWAHAHAHA.
Audrey Rose has fast become one of my favourite heroines. She’s headstrong, intelligent, and witty. Her keen eye to detail in order to figure out murders is great, but also, there is this balance brought on by her need for approval from her uncle. I mean, she is an apprentice for her uncle but there are moments where she’s on par with her uncle. It’s a great aspect of her narrative. What definitely stands out, is her relationship with Thomas Cresswell – who is also another new favourite character of mine. The two are perfect together, they have the best banter, and there are some rough moments for their relationship in this book, be warned.
Side note: It’s weird how much I like these books because I’m like a fantasy and sci-fi fanatic and to venture out into these books is not something that I normally do. So, for me to like them this much is great. I think it may have something to do with my affinity for mystery style tv shows and movies – How To Get Away With Murder, for example, is like phenomenal.
Another thing, the circus act in this story is so good! I love anything circus related – it’s a shame I haven’t read Caraval yet – and this book definitely delivers on the whimsy factor. And, how could one forget Houdini! He was great in this book and it’s great to see Maniscalco talk about him before he became THE GREAT HOUDINI. So, that was a nice addition to the story.
Overall, Escaping From Houdini is definitely my favourite in the series, so far, and I’m without a doubt head over heels for Audrey Rose and Thomas. And, if you haven’t already, give these books a go!
In this third instalment in the #1 bestselling Stalking Jack the Ripper series, a luxurious ocean liner becomes a floating prison of scandal, madness, and horror when passengers are murdered one by one…with nowhere to run from the killer.
Audrey Rose Wadsworth and her partner-in-crime-investigation, Thomas Cresswell, are en route to New York to help solve another blood-soaked mystery. Embarking on a week-long voyage across the Atlantic on the opulent RMS Etruria, they’re delighted to discover a travelling troupe of circus performers, fortune tellers, and a certain charismatic young escape artist entertaining the first-class passengers nightly.
But then, privileged young women begin to go missing without explanation, and a series of brutal slayings shocks the entire ship. The strange and disturbing influence of the Moonlight Carnival pervades the decks as the murders grow ever more freakish, with nowhere to escape except the unforgiving sea. It’s up to Audrey Rose and Thomas to piece together the gruesome investigation as even more passengers die before reaching their destination. But with clues to the next victim pointing to someone she loves, can Audrey Rose unravel the mystery before the killer’s horrifying finale?