The Hangman’s Secret

Victorian Mystery #3

by Laura Joh Rowland

** Publication Date 18 January 2019 **

London in the 1890s is damp, dark and smoky. The perfect setting for a villainous mystery. Sarah Bain is a photographer, quite an unusual occupation not only in that time, but especially for a woman. Sarah works for the local paper, the Daily World, and is at the beck and call of its editor, Sir Gerald Mariner. Sir Gerald likes to publish stories that sell, or the early edition of today’s tabloids. Sarah is often sent to grisly scenes of murder that would cause even the strongest of men to cringe. Yet Sarah is one plucky woman. She isn’t daunted by much.

Sarah lives in a house with Mick O’Reilly, a fourteen year old former street urchin; Lord Hugh Staunton, one dashing gentleman; and Fitzmorris, Lord Hugh’s valet who also stands in as cook, housekeeper and anything else needed. Mick is supposed to be going to school, but he prefers to hang out with Sarah and Lord Hugh carrying equipment and solving crimes. 

In this book, Sarah is awakened by someone calling her to a crime scene of one Harry Warbrick, a hangman who is hanged by his own rope. Harry also runs a local pub below his residence. Sarah records the scene of the crime, but is not convinced of the guilt of the man they arrest. Sarah decides to investigate her own leads, along with Hugh & Mick. With this they are off on a dangerous mission to unearth the truth.

This is the third book of the Victorian Mystery series by Laura Joh Rowland. I had not read the previous two books, and this book can definitely stand on its own. Once you’ve enjoyed one of the series, my bet is that you would probably enjoy the others. I am looking forward to catching up with Sarah, Lord Hugh and Mick in the other books.


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