Series Title: A Girl Like You(A Henrietta and Inspector Howard Novel #1) by Michelle Cox
Category: Adult Fiction, 288 pages
Genre: Historical Mystery
Publisher: She Writes Press
Release dates: April 19, 2016
Tour dates: April 14 to May 11, 2020
Content Rating: PG-13 + M (There are sex scenes, not too explicit, some violence)
When aloof Inspector Clive Howard appears on the scene, Henrietta agrees to go undercover for him—and is plunged into Chicago’s grittier underworld. Meanwhile, she’s still busy playing mother hen to her younger siblings, as well as to pesky neighborhood boy Stanley, who believes himself in love with her and keeps popping up in the most unlikely places, determined to keep Henrietta safe—even from the Inspector, if need be. Despite his efforts, however, and his penchant for messing up the Inspector’s investigation, the lovely Henrietta and the impenetrable Inspector find themselves drawn to each other in most unsuitable ways.
Henrietta comes from a very poor family in Chicago’s northwest side. Her father tragically died when she was thirteen and her mother is a bitter woman who is depressed and very hard on Henrietta. Being the firstborn, Henrietta does what she can to find jobs that bring in money to feed her brood of younger siblings. She's a beautiful girl, bold and courageous with a naiveté that attracts men and lands her as an undercover usherette at a burlesque club.
I enjoyed the mystery, the setting and the cast of characters in this novel. They felt authentic to the time period. Inspector Clive is somewhat of a brooding man with a painful past. Henrietta is feisty and alluring, with a sweet innocence about her. One can't help liking her. She does what is right by her family while coming of age in a heady world where sex sells and desperate women try to eke out a living amidst a dangerous trade. I did feel Henrietta was in over her head at one point and was taking bad risks, all to impress the Inspector who should not have used a young inexperienced girl to catch a mobster.
Apart from this, the story kept me turning the pages. I liked the twist at the end, so good! This was the first book in the series and it made me want to read the next one too. If you like atmospheric historical fiction with mystery and romance, give this series a try.
I've already finished the second book A Ring of Truth, so watch for my review later this week.
Disclosure: I bought a Kindle copy. I was not told how to rate or review this product.
Michelle Cox is the author of the multiple award-winning Henrietta and Inspector Howard series as well as "Novel Notes of Local Lore," a weekly blog dedicated to Chicago's forgotten residents. She suspects she may have once lived in the 1930s and, having yet to discover a handy time machine lying around, has resorted to writing about the era as a way of getting herself back there. Coincidentally, her books have been praised by Kirkus, Library Journal, Publishers Weekly, Booklist and many others, so she might be on to something. Unbeknownst to most, Michelle hoards board games she doesn't have time to play and is, not surprisingly, addicted to period dramas and big band music. Also marmalade.
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