When Sir Archibald Latham of the War Office dies from a heart attack while visiting her brothel, Madam India Black is unexpectedly thrust into a deadly game between Russian and British agents who are seeking the military secrets Latham carried. Blackmailed into recovering the missing documents, India finds herself dodging Russian agents, seducing spies and embarking on midnight sleigh rides.
Now this was a different kind of heroine. India is a former whore who is now the proud owner of her own brothel, you go girl. She can now rest her feet and have a glass of whisky while she tries to keep her girls in line.
But more than that is happening as this is a mystery/spy novel. India gets blackmailed to help her country. And a former whore does have her charm and that is why they want her. But India was cool, and continued to help everyone through the book. Because this woman does not give up. Which is of course why there are more books about her helping the government ;)
To her help she has a street rat (I am just gonna call him that) that comes in handy. And the mysterious spy Mr French. I can't wait to get to know him more for here it felt like we just brushed the surface.
Mystery, danger, spy-game, a touch of humour and a resourceful woman is what you get in this book. And that is takes place in the late 1800s is truly the best part. It make it a bit more exciting, and harder for them too.
A fun book, and I can't wait to see what India comes up with next.
Paperback, 320 pages
Expected publication: April 17th 2014 by Titan Books (first published November 23rd 2010)
Madam of Espionage Mysteries #1
Historical Fiction / mystery