Cora, Nellie, and Michiko are three young ladies who become fast friends even though they each come from very different backgrounds. Cora is an apprentice for Lord White. She assists him in his secret laboratory inventing things. Nellie is the assistant for the magician, The Great Raheem. She can easily get in and out of tight spaces and can easily pick any lock. Michiko is from Japan and assists Sir Callum Fielding-Shaw in teaching self-defense to people. She trained as a samurai warrior in Japan but didn’t get her sword due to the fact that she is a girl. The three meet at a performance.
They meet again at a crime scene where a scientist in attendance at the performance was murdered. Not only was the scientist killed, but it is thought that the same person who killed the scientist is also killing young girls selling flowers. The three girls vow to find the killer and bring him to justice. Each girl faces death during their journey to find the killer. Their individual specialties complement one another in the task. However, they are very much stunned when they find out who actually committed the crimes.
I highly recommend this book for Mature Readers. The genre of the book is Steampunk, which includes inventions powered by steam in a time period where these machines would not have existed. Be sure to read the chapter titles as they reveal what is going to happen in that chapter and some of them are humorous. The author uses a lot of humor throughout the book. If you want to escape, this is the book for you.
(Editor's Note: Great read alike for Etiquette & Espionage; also THE AGENCY series)
440 pages Ages 13 and up 978-0803737617
Recommended by: Karen Limbaugh, MLIS, Retired High School Librarian, Texas USA