Pinkerton detective Jennifer Layne is no stranger to undercover work. But posing as a lady companion named Amy at Miss Lillian’s Parlor House and Boots is a first for her. She’s finally landed a high-profile case and is on the trail of the notorious Gunnysack Bandit, when one of Miss Lillian’s girls essential to her investigation meets an untimely demise. Only a handful of people are in the house at the time of her death, including handsome Tom Colton, a former Texas Ranger determined to clear his brother’s name. Amy has many reasons to suspect Tom of murder - and one very personal reason to hope that she’s wrong about him.
©2014 Margaret Brownley (P)2014 Barbour Publishing, Inc.
Jennifer is a feisty young woman always needing to prove her worth as a female Pinkerton detective. She often surprises the criminals and the lawmen. Her current job has her tracking the notorious Gunnysack Bandit. Clues have led her to Miss Lillian’s Parlor House and Boots where she decides to go undercover as one of Lillian’s girls. This is a challenge as she isn’t comfortable in the make-up or clothes but she has a job to do. Usually her undercover work doesn’t cause such confusion with her faith either.
Jennifer is trying to interview Rose but before she gets to her, Rose is found dead. The suspects in the house include Miss Lillian and the girls, one man who was leaving the house and Tom Colton. Tom is a handsome man who stumbled into Amy (Jennifer) while he too was looking for Rose. Tom is a former Texas Ranger trying to find out details of his brother’s movements before his death.
Amy can’t let a handsome man sway her and Tom is included in her investigations. Amy grows closer to the girls and even becomes friends as she learns their histories and struggles. She and Tom dance around their attraction as they hide their motives from each other.
I enjoyed the characters, the mystery and the good, light humor. The history of conflict with females in the Pinkerton Agency is interesting. I liked how Jennifer/Amy cared for the women and their circumstances. Her actions encouraged the others and helped change the lives of those around her. At least one scene is particularly crazy as the girls try to help trap the villain - it was not realistic but it was fun.
The faith is simply expressed in thought, prayer and action. The story moves along well and I liked the sweetness. I enjoy Ms. Brownley's writing which provides a reliable light read. I recommend this to those who enjoy sweet historical fiction with mystery elements.
Audio Notes: The narration was not very impressive. Jaimee Draper added a little extra to the personalities of the characters but for the most part it was a reading rather than a performance. I liked the audio because it is easy to listen but this might be just as enjoyable as a print or ebook.
I loved the narrator and the story in this book. I has no idea this was taken from a true story. The pinkertive detectives what a great story of a lady detective who was able to solve many mysteries. listen, or read for a great story.
This book is a delightful read. If you can begin to imagine what a lady Pinkerton Detective, a Texas Ranger, a bordello, the women who work there and there "guests" have to do with a bank robber, and a murder or two you have the makings of a great book. At times you can't help but laugh out loud as the story is so funny and totally fun to read. I both listened to it on audible and read it. The narrator was pretty good except when it came to the British accent. Oh yes, I forgot to mention the British detective & the town's lady revivalists. "Repent!" 😂
This could have been so much more. Even with what I am sure the author thought were unique twists, it was so predictable. The narration was very uninspiring. I felt rather than giving each character his or her own special voice, the narrator was just reading aloud.
I won't try the other books in this series.
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