Molly Murphy is starting to think the cards are stacked against her. She's determined to be a private detective, but hampering her investigations is the fact that she's finding many places in turn-of-the-century New York City where women are not welcome, something that's as frustrating to her fiery Irish pride as it is to her rapidly emptying pocketbook.
Then two business opportunities pop up simultaneously. An aristocratic family in Dublin fears their daughter has fled to the New World with her unsavory boyfriend, and they hire Molly to track the two down and send the young woman back home. Before she has time to consider her good luck, she's asked to go undercover as a piece worker in the garment business and investigate a potential case of industrial espionage. Now if she can only solve both cases without the help of Daniel Sullivan, the police captain who claims he loves her but who is engaged to someone else....
Full of the rich detail of New York's teeming immigrant community and the colorful historical personalities of the age, For the Love of Mike is the triumphant third installment in Rhys Bowen's Agatha Award-winning series.
©2003 Rhys Bowen (P)2013 Audible, Inc.
I would give this series a 4.5/5. It is not epic, but the books have a continuity that binds them all together and progresses the series. The stories themselves are entertaining, solid, and the protagonist is a strong woman, but not without vulnerabilities. Mrs. Bowen portrays turn-of-the century New York with great detail and accuracy. The narrator is adept at all of the accents and definitely adds to the story. Though not the most compelling book I have ever listened to, it is worth the credit and is on par with the author's other works-- it is a classic mystery with an enjoyable story line and well defined characters.
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This third instalment of the series is the best one so far.
Perhaps it’s because the plot in this book was better than in the 2 previous books? or maybe (by now) I feel as though I know the characters better, and have begun to like them more and more?
Although it’s all ever so slightly over the top, that’s part of its charm; it never seemed preposterous or silly to me because I was so wrapped up in the adventures.
I love the setting in the Turn of the Century New York City and Molly is becoming quite sympathetic to me. I look forward to her continuing evolution in future instalments.
I can be summed up in one word. Handsome, intelligent, honest, humble, brave, exciting, fun, kind, trustworthy, sexy! All these words work.
Things to change:
1. There is a lot of repetition. For example, The leading male character is always yelling at the heroine. When he does this he says the same thing over and over again. These incidents occure several times in every book. Then the main character reviews these conversations in her head several more times. The gist of these conversations are as follows:
Male lead: I am drawn to you because your spirit and bravery. And now stop being so spirited and brave because you will get hurt.
Female lead: I'm going to tell you that I'm not going to be spirited or brave anymore, but we both know that in the next 50 to 100 pages I will do something stupid and end up back at police headquarters to be lectured by you once again.
2. Maybe use some more Irish terminology in the main character's dialogue. Throwing in the word "blarney" in several times in each book followed by the word's definition (ever single time) just isn't enough.
3. Authentic details would go a long way in these books to creating a believable setting.
The majority of the details are common knowledge.
4. Does the main character have to almost get raped in every book?
5. Maybe the harsh world of turn of the century America is not the best time period for a light hearted romp.
It would be nice if the author could add some more authentic and complex details to the book that would set it more firmly in history.
The reader does a passable Irish accent. The voices of main characters are fairly distinguishable.
It was okay but none of the male characters were realistic.
I don't particularly like this series. This will be the last one of the series I listen to.
The performance was excellent
I've read about a dozen of the two series by Rhys Bowen. They are just such a fun break from the other mysteries. I love all the usual suspects but after a while it's time to add some humor. I hope this and the Lady Georgiana series keep coming. I hope you don't pass them by. And the narration is excellent. Sounds exactly as you picture Molly in your minds eye.
I am addicted to this series. Rhys Bowen paints 20th century New York so vividly by having Molly Murphy meet the social issues of that era head on. Nicola Barber's reading is crisp and engaging, bringing Bowen's words to life.
Rhys Bowen's writing grabs a hold of me and doesn't let go until the very last page. That's in large part due to her main protagonist, Molly Murphy. Molly is an independent woman living in a time, where women were meant to be seen and not heard, get married, and have babies. Molly isn't the settling down type, and wants to make her own way in the world. Having Molly wanting to work in a field dominated by men, keeps me hooked and guessing where the story will lead next.
Her voice for each character is unique and engaging. Sometimes a narrator can't quite get a character's voice right, and it becomes laughable every time I hear them speak, but Nicola Barber hits it right each time.
First in line for a ticket. I'm a historical fiction addict.
Another enjoyable installment in the series. Nicola Barber does a fine job as Molly, but I'm not all that keen on her male voices or any of her American voices- they all tend to sound the same. While it's not bad narration, it's not particularly special, I'm not sure it's worth a full credit. The whisper synch price might make it more worthwhile.
a female Sherlock Holmes
Great voices and story telling
Made me excited to see what was going to happen next.
Love the entire series. Can't wait to read the next book!
Retired tech writer/editor. Mensa. Pgh Steelers/ Penguins fan. Lib Dem/feminist. Grew up reading lit--M.A. English--now read mys/thrillers.
Avoid Loving Heels
I love Molly Murphy and she's a fine detective. The biggest mystery is what she sees in Daniel Sullivan. I enjoyed Murphy's Law & bought City of Darkness and Light on sale. Then I bought two more: Death of Riley & For the Love of Mike. I erroneously thought the Death of Riley would lead to Molly's marriage. Then I thought For the Love of Mike would do it for sure. Now I'm done both & she's still not married. Just looked up the series and find there are a BATCH of books between these early ones & City of Darkness and Light, when Molly & Daniel are married. But I found myself annoyed to the point of hostility toward Daniel in this book. Molly is always aces but Daniel is rude, bossy, and treats her like a child. To find out in Death of Riley that he has not played fair with her on top of his male chauvinistic attitude is too much. And to have him send her to be a companion to the aunt of the woman he's engaged to is the height of arrogance! Don't know how she ever ended up married to him--she's much too good for him. (And even after they're married, his patriarchal attitudes remain from what I recall from City of Darkness & Light.)
I was horrified at the working conditions of the women in the sweatshops and I know in the days before unions such conditions prevailed. I've read of fires killing garment workers because of doors that were chained shut. I'd never heard of paying for your own needles for the sewing machines or for the towel in the washroom, but I can believe it. (And the way "Right to Work" (for less money & benefits) laws are being passed in many red states, we'll soon be back to those deplorable conditions. Unions gave us decent working conditions including: 8-hour days, 40-hour work weeks, minimum wage, overtime pay, safety regulations, vacation days, sick days, health insurance at work, retirement plans, and many other benefits and because UNION workers got these benefits workers in nonunionized industries got them as well to keep pace.)
Gotta add: Her new boyfriend, Jacob, is almost as loaded with patriarchal attitudes as Daniel.
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