I know it’s been a long time, but I’m Back. A lot has happened since I last posted here, some of it pretty horrible, but I have kept reading so here is the first in a series of posts about some of the many, many books that I have discovered.
This book was recommended to me by Rachel, long time friend of the author. I was pleased to be able to find it in a bookshop and devoured it really quickly. Which is impressive if you could see how many other books I have around me to read…
It is a book about a teenager who is working behind the scenes in a Victorian Music Hall. She has lost everyone in her family, which sounds grim until the story develops and there is a glimmer of hope that someone has survived. She is forced into starring in a new act as Lady Ginger, who runs all the dubious “businesses” locally, engages her to find out about the girls who have been going missing from the area. There is peril, excitement and danger while Kitty works out who is to be trusted, and who is a real threat.
The real excitement of this book is to be found in the descriptions of life in London in the 1800s. I have read my fair share of Victorian novels, as well as more modern efforts meant to be set in the period, and this is novel incredibly convincing. Griffin manages the details without slowing the action of how it felt to walk through the streets of London in the dangerous hours of night. The atmosphere is terrific, the fear feels real, and the characters are consistent. It is a book that keeps moving, keeps involving the reader, and carries the story well.
There are other books like this out there, but this is not a pretentious read which shows off its research and ambitions. I think there are a few more books to come from Kitty (and Kate!) and I will definitely be looking out for them.