A Lady Emily Mystery
by Tasha Alexander
The Dark Heart of Florence is the fifteenth book in a series featuring Lady Emily, her husband Colin and those around them. Long term readers will be delighted to again spend time with these characters and those new to the books may well want to go back and read at least some of the earlier entries.
There are many things that were appealing in this latest dual timeline story. One of these is the author’s knowledge of Florence, the Medici family, Savonarola and the imagined lives of those who lived at that time. She then takes readers on a virtual tour of that same city in 1903. It bears repeating that the erudite Ms. Alexander knows her Florence.
For those who may not know, Lady Emily’s husband works for the British government. His jobs often involve secrecy. However, Lady Emily, who is not a typical woman of her time, always becomes involved as well. Watching how their work leads to a restoration of order is another enjoyable aspect to the series.
In the part of the book that is set during the time of Botticelli, readers meet a young woman who wants more than what a young woman can typically expect, which is an arranged marriage. Who she falls in love with and the consequences of that choice form one thread of the narrative.
In 1903, Lady Emily, her close friend, her husband and her husband’s work colleague are staying in the home that was bequeathed to Colin’s daughter from an earlier relationship. A body falls to the ground. Why was he murdered? Does it have to do with Colin’s work or, possibly, a hidden treasure? Readers will keep turning the pages in order to find out.
Readers can be sure that they will find plenty of adventure in this story that is engaging and interesting. I definitely recommend this title.
Many thanks to NetGalley and the publisher. All opinions are my own.