It is my hypothesis that social conventions are created to test our fortitude.
Rockland circa 1900~ As the mayor's daughter, Madeline Brown enjoys a rich social life that many might envy. But a sharp mind and a growing talent for observation leaves Madeline torn between avoiding social censure and exploring the world around her.
With an aunt who considers higher education and employment equally unsuitable for the mayor's daughter, there is little to amuse her save endless committee meetings, evening socials, and her favorite pastime: curling up with an exciting detective novel. The temperance and suffrage movements hold little interest for a young woman who has just endured the rigors of her father's mayoral campaign.
So when a young man shows interest in her friend, Madeline's interest piques--until his actions hint that he might not be the upstanding gentleman everyone presumes him to be. Unable to ignore her concerns, Madeline finds herself in the middle of an investigation into his character and discovers a side of Rockland she's never encountered.
Will her new hobby reduce the tedium of her life, or will her "meddling" create tension for herself and her father? Will she be forced to squelch this budding skill of hers or has Madeline finally found her calling in life.
I enjoyed this author's style of writing. It wasn't what I was used to, but it really made me like the characters. As this is a historical mystery, Madeline is not a traditional lady for the time period in which she is born. She absolutely doesn't conform to the 'norm' but she isn't mean or flaunting about it. As the mayor's daughter, she knows the boundaries (even if she likes to push them).
Madeline is a smart cookie. When something seems off about her friend's love interest, she has to investigate it. She sees the 'meddling' she does as a good thing, but it causes issues as well. This isn't a suspenseful mystery but it will absolutely keep your attention. As you read one page, a piece clicks into place, but you really want to know more so you must keep reading. I kept hoping for something between her and Russell and really hope that happens in the future.
It was a 4/5 for me. I do want to see what happens next with these characters.
Thank you to the author for the review copy of this book (via Celebrate Lit). I received this book in exchange for an honest review and the opinions stated above are 100% mine.