A Child Lost
by Michelle Cox
Publishing April 28, 2020
by She Writes Press
About the book:
A spiritualist, an insane asylum, a lost little girl . . .
When Clive, anxious to distract a depressed Henrietta, begs Sergeant Frank Davis for a case, he is assigned to investigating a seemingly boring affair: a spiritualist woman operating in an abandoned schoolhouse on the edge of town who is suspected of robbing people of their valuables. What begins as an open and shut case becomes more complicated, however, when Henrietta—much to Clive’s dismay—begins to believe the spiritualist’s strange ramblings.
Meanwhile, Elsie begs Clive and Henrietta to help her and the object of her budding love, Gunther, locate the whereabouts of one Liesel Klinkhammer, the German woman Gunther has traveled to America to find and the mother of the little girl, Anna, whom he has brought along with him. The search leads them to Dunning Asylum, where they discover some terrible truths about Liesel. When the child, Anna, is herself mistakenly admitted to the asylum after an epileptic fit, Clive and Henrietta return to Dunning to retrieve her. This time, however, Henrietta begins to suspect that something darker may be happening. When Clive doesn’t believe her, she decides to take matters into her own hands . . . with horrifying results.
Guilty as charged. I have to admit, this is my first Michelle Cox book. Can you believe it’s book 5 of her Henrietta and Inspector Howard Series? Yeah, I had no clue. So starting out saying that doesn’t sound so good, does it? Let’s not take this review in THAT direction, I just wanted to be up front with you and let you know this is a series and an author I was unaware of before I dug in. It wouldn’t be fair otherwise.
So Michelle Cox writes historical fiction based on 1930’s Chicago, Illinois. Her main characters are Inspector Clive Howard and Henrietta Von Harmon, who meet in book 1 and carry on their investigations to this latest installment of book #5. Now don’t be alarmed, you most certainly can read this book as a stand alone and will enjoy it just the same, but I will tell you each book in consecutive order tells the story of how Clive and Henrietta’s relationship evolves and they do pull together if you read them as a series, (I know this from doing a bunch of research after finishing this, my first Cox read). So let’s get to my thoughts.
If you like historical fiction, definitely pick this one up. If you haven’t read historical fiction at all, and are interested in giving it a try, definitely pick this one up, If you have no interest in reading historical fiction ever because its not for you, still, I implore you, pick this one up. Michelle Cox has a way of writing that immerses you into a story so well, that you think you are actually there. The mystery, the suspense, the twists and turns all mixed with brilliantly researched history on the era make this book a page turner. Not to mention the grit and intensity of Inspector Howard and Henrietta that make you want to see these investigations though to the end right along with them. There are two very unique mysteries/investigations to solve that become a lot more than our sleuths expected, and take on quite the ominous turn. And then Michelle Cox does a wonderful job of leaving you with a sweet cliffhanger ensuring you’ll come back for the next installment. FYI: There are some strong themes in this one such as depression, miscarriage and mental health, as well as social issues, but they are not overly done (You just need to be aware in case you need trigger warnings).
In a nutshell, you are going to absolutely love this book. You will love it so much you will want to order the previous 4 installments. I might just suggest you order all 5 right now and start from the beginning. I know I will be ordering the other 4, and of course whatever books come next too. (The first 4 have absolutely amazing reviews). This was fun, intriguing, page-turning, unputdownable, and just a damn good. book, 4.5 Stars from me. A great read.
I just would like to thank Michelle Cox, Suzanne Leopold of Suzy Approved Book Tours and She Writes Press for the copy of this book for my unbiased and honest opinion for review.
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About the Author
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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