A historical mystery featuring the witty and wily Mary Handley, the first woman detective in Brooklyn, as she tries to prove herself in a man's world while solving a high-profile murder.
Mary Handley is a not your typical late-19th century lady. She's fiery, clever, daring - and she's not about to conform to the gender norms of the day. Not long after being fired from her job at the hat factory for insubordinate behavior, Mary finds herself at the murder scene of Charles Goodrich, the brother of a prominent alderman and former bookkeeper of Thomas Edison. When Mary proves her acumen as a sleuth, she is hired by the Brooklyn police department - as the city's first policewoman - to solve the crime. The top brass of the department expect her to fail, but Mary has other plans. As she delves into the mystery, she finds herself questioning the likes of J. P. Morgan, Thomas Edison, and Nikola Tesla. Mary soon discovers the key to solving the case goes well beyond finding a murderer and depends on her ability to unearth the machinations of the city's most prominent and respected public figures: men who will go to great lengths to protect their secrets.
Much like Mr. Churchill's Secretary and Maisie Dobbs, Second Street Station presents a portrait of a world plunging into modernity through the eyes of a clever female sleuth. Mary Handley is an unforgettable protagonist whose wit, humor, and charm will delight listeners from the very first minute.
©2015 Lawrence H. Levy (P)2015 Random House Audio
"A promising series kickoff that presents a morally strong heroine with a mystery that cleverly intertwines fact and fiction." (Kirkus Reviews)
"Mary Handley, an unconventional nineteenth-century female sleuth whom readers are sure to love...overcomes trained killers - using her jujitsu skills and quick wits - and even finds time to take a lover, in defiance of social propriety. Readers won't expect the surprise denouement as Handley steals the show and guarantees readership for a sequel." (Booklist)
"Second Street Station is a great read. Following Mary Handley through this Victorian adventure makes you feel like you've found some lost Sherlock Holmes story. It's impressive that the characters, many based on actual historical figures, are always funny, but the greatest delight is the mystery itself." (Matthew Weiner, creator of Mad Men)
Although a worthy topic for this well-researched historical fiction, Second Street Station seemed awkward to me. I was off-put by the "Bowler Hat" and "Mustache" names and occasionally cringed at phrases such as one describing a man as eager as a dog in heat. Could I have misheard that? Hope so! Cassandra Campbell did a fine job with challenging material; like the book, however, her narration couldn't reduce the tension between melodrama and mystery.
Better writing, better narration.
Better writing, for example, if the author knew the difference between the word "expletive" and "explanation" which was used incorrectly about 30 minutes into it. Also there were more cliche's than I can stand, even for light entertainment. Why do I think this may have been self-published?
It was like listening to a children's or YA book, the narration was very wide-eyed and arch.
I was so surprised when I heard this sample, I couldn't download this book fast enough!
This is my third audible book, and although the first two were written by excellent, best-selling authors, the narration detracted so much from story content, I didn't think I'd remain with Audible.
Then I stumbled across Second Street Station - just finished it 2 hours ago, and am looking forward to browsing Audible for more by this author and this narrator. If you enjoy an excellent, well-narrated story, this is for you!
This book is a perfect blend of fact and fiction and is brilliantly narrated.
I liked the simple story line even within the mysteries as they evolved. Sometimes the dialog was irritatingly slow.
Tried to make it gross, everything was "off." Another attempt of someone trying to Re-write history. Tried to lower well know history characters characters & integrity, & standards.
Not a good quality of writing.
I don't enjoy the baser things of life. A good read is uplifting. For example, with Dick Francis, even the bad guy has good character qualities and they are interesting.
Overly confident and self-congratulatory, Mary has little more decernable empathy than the hired gun only known as "bowler hat" (seriously??) Almost every character is a 2-d, trite stereotype, about whom you could not care less!!
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