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Publisher's Summary

After a routine delivery, midwife Sarah Brandt visits her patient in a rooming house and finds that another boarder, a young girl, has been killed. At the request of sergeant Frank Malloy, she searches the girl's room and discovers that the victim is from one of the most prominent families in New York - and the sister of an old friend. The powerful family, fearful of scandal, refuses to permit an investigation. But with Malloy's help, Sarah begins a dangerous quest to bring the killer to justice before death claims another victim.

©1999 Victoria Thompson (P)2015 Tantor

Critic Reviews

"Thompson vividly re-creates the gas-lit world of old New York, concluding her mystery with revelations that will shock even 20th-century readers." ( Publishers Weekly)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    68
  • 4 Stars
    54
  • 3 Stars
    11
  • 2 Stars
    3
  • 1 Stars
    3

Performance

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    55
  • 4 Stars
    32
  • 3 Stars
    27
  • 2 Stars
    10
  • 1 Stars
    4

Story

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    65
  • 4 Stars
    48
  • 3 Stars
    9
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Sort by:
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Buy the book. The reader is TERRIBLE!

Would you listen to Murder on Astor Place again? Why?

No. The reader made a period piece seem like a modern book. There is no distinction in her voices - no giving the things that MAKE it a period piece - the hero sounds like the heroine, who sounds like the bad guys. The only time there's a obvious distinction, there's a note in the file saying the person talked in an obvious way. Even the CHILDREN sounded like the adults.

Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

I actually had to separate the reader from the written word, but I realized the writing was very good.

How did the narrator detract from the book?

Totally sapped the book of it's strength.

Any additional comments?

I think I would like the book. It's embroidery season now and I don't have time until after the holidays to read. I'll probably try the 2nd book in the series then. AWFUL READER!

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

I want to like this series!

I like the early 20th century New York City setting and the titles of the books alone are intriguing to me; I really want to give the Gaslight Mystery Series a fair shot.

It was a bad start - the basic premise was quite improbable and there were frustrating holes in the set-up that were hard to overcome. A cop “hijacks” a midwife into helping him investigate a murder scene? Why? The pretext of “you’re a woman, you might know something” was ludicrous. Throughout the story they maintain a somewhat acrimonious relationship… which I don’t really understand because he asked for her help up front!

Eventually we learn why they are a little frosty with one another and it all has to do with their own personal baggage which just felt planted for the purpose of having something to unravel later on.

I finally had to tell myself to just suspend disbelief and go with it!

Overall it wasn’t too bad. I’ll give Book 2 a try before I decide if I’ll drop the series or keep pushing; the series is already up to 19 instalments so I’ll have plenty to read in the future if I like them!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

This Great mystery!

This intricate story is full of interesting historical details and fascinating, well drawn characters. I will look for more by this author.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Narrator

How could the performance have been better?

I've just recently gotten in to this series by Veronica Thompson, and so far it seems enjoyable. However, the narrator is HORRIBLE!!! She makes the book barely tolerable. I don't think I've ever heard such a terrible narrator and I've been listening to audio books for almost 20 years. She almost ruins the whole thing for me. I hope I can stand to muddle through the remainder of the book while listening to her nightmarish narration. The narrator might just ruin the series for me, although I hope not. Goodness, please don't ever use Callie Beaulieu for anything else in audio books!!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Great first of Series

great first book in series not too much scene and character setting Victoria leaves room for future character development as the series unfolds

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

good read

very good read. It was funny at times and interesting at others. Great narator. thumbs up