After establishing her reputation as one of London’s most highly regarded undertakers, Violet Harper decided to take her practice to the wilds of the American West. But when her mother falls ill, Violet and her husband Samuel are summoned back to England, where her skills are as sought-after as ever. She’s honored to undertake the funeral of Anthony Fairmont, the Viscount Raybourn, a close friend of Queen Victoria’s who died in suspicious circumstances—but it’s difficult to perform her services when his body disappears…
“…Violet remains an engaging guide with an unusual perspective on Victorian society.” Publishers Weekly
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I originally wrote LADY OF ASHES as a standalone piece of historical fiction. My publisher, however, was intrigued by the idea of a lady undertaker. Since that novel had some light mystery elements to it, I was asked to continue Violet’s adventures as a series.
This was an intriguing challenge for me, as I was not used to what was required of mystery plotting. How do you make innocent people seem guilty, and guilty people seem innocent? How do you throw in red herrings to mislead the reader?
My editor’s first instruction was, “Get Violet back to London, quick!” You, dear reader, can decide if that was done well.