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Frank Malloy s latest client is the well-dressed Will Bert. He s searching for his brother, a newsboy named Freddie, so he can share his new financial good fortune. Frank makes quick work of the case and locates Freddie, but a happy reunion between brothers is not in the cards.   When Will's name is mentioned, Freddie runs off only to be found dead a short time later. Suspi Frank Malloy s latest client is the well-dressed Will Bert. He s searching for his brother, a newsboy named Freddie, so he can share his new financial good fortune. Frank makes quick work of the case and locates Freddie, but a happy reunion between brothers is not in the cards.   When Will's name is mentioned, Freddie runs off only to be found dead a short time later. Suspicious, Frank tracks down Will who spins a tale of lust and deceit involving a young society woman, Estelle Longacre, also recently deceased. Frank can t be sure if Estelle's risky behavior and the company she kept was to blame, or if her own ruthless family had a hand in her death.  Frank will need Sarah s help to unearth the dark secrets of the wealthy Longacres and to discover if there is a connection between Estelle and Freddie s death. Together they must navigate a perilous underground web of treachery to find the truth.


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Frank Malloy s latest client is the well-dressed Will Bert. He s searching for his brother, a newsboy named Freddie, so he can share his new financial good fortune. Frank makes quick work of the case and locates Freddie, but a happy reunion between brothers is not in the cards.   When Will's name is mentioned, Freddie runs off only to be found dead a short time later. Suspi Frank Malloy s latest client is the well-dressed Will Bert. He s searching for his brother, a newsboy named Freddie, so he can share his new financial good fortune. Frank makes quick work of the case and locates Freddie, but a happy reunion between brothers is not in the cards.   When Will's name is mentioned, Freddie runs off only to be found dead a short time later. Suspicious, Frank tracks down Will who spins a tale of lust and deceit involving a young society woman, Estelle Longacre, also recently deceased. Frank can t be sure if Estelle's risky behavior and the company she kept was to blame, or if her own ruthless family had a hand in her death.  Frank will need Sarah s help to unearth the dark secrets of the wealthy Longacres and to discover if there is a connection between Estelle and Freddie s death. Together they must navigate a perilous underground web of treachery to find the truth.

30 review for Murder in the Bowery

  1. 4 out of 5

    Julie

    Murder in the Bowery by Victoria Thompson is a 2017 Berkley publication. This is an interesting and absorbing installment in Victoria Thompson’s Gaslight Mystery series. Centered around the Newsboys strike, and its connection to the orphan trains, Frank's newest case, sends him in search of a missing boy down in the Bowery neighborhood, which ends tragically, with not one murder, but two. Frank and Sarah work to connect the dots between the two murders, one of which is a young lady from an afflu Murder in the Bowery by Victoria Thompson is a 2017 Berkley publication. This is an interesting and absorbing installment in Victoria Thompson’s Gaslight Mystery series. Centered around the Newsboys strike, and its connection to the orphan trains, Frank's newest case, sends him in search of a missing boy down in the Bowery neighborhood, which ends tragically, with not one murder, but two. Frank and Sarah work to connect the dots between the two murders, one of which is a young lady from an affluent family who had ‘gone slumming’ in the Bowery and ended up involved with ‘Black Jack’, a notorious crime boss. I enjoyed the historical details in this story involving the strike and the unbelievable practice of affluent people taking tours into crime ridden and impoverished neighborhoods, watching staged enactments of life in the ‘slums’. Incredible. I’d never heard of that before, and you know me, I had to Google it. Sure enough, it was a ‘thing’ in London, then made its way to New York. So, for the second time this week a ‘cozy’ mystery has taught me something I didn’t know. The mystery is constructed quite well, with clever and crisp dialogue, which had to be approached carefully, and creatively, because of the sensitive matters discussed, but which also brought a bit of humor on occasion, due to Frank's obvious discomfiture. The subject matter is difficult, but handled delicately. Crimes, whether among the rich or the poor, in higher or lower classes, out in the open or behind closed doors, touches everyone, with evil seeping into every walk of life, and this story exposes that truth effectively. Overall, I enjoyed this latest Gaslight Mystery and seeing how married life is treating Frank and Sarah, and touching base with the other recurring characters. This is a must for fans of the series, but even those who are just joining in, who may not know the long history between Frank and Sarah, but can easily enjoy the mystery, just the same- so just jump right in- you'll be glad you did. 4 stars

  2. 5 out of 5

    Linda

    Slumming...... Yep, that's what it's called. A jaunt through the streets of the Bowery filled with visions of drinking, gambling, and other hi-jinx. An electrified pasttime for those who have no business on these darkened sidewalks whatsoever. And here's where the sidewalk ends. Estelle Longacre, a young society woman from the upper west side of New York, took too many footsteps along this path. Her body was found in a trunk in an overgrown alley. Local gangster, Black Jack, seems to have claims o Slumming...... Yep, that's what it's called. A jaunt through the streets of the Bowery filled with visions of drinking, gambling, and other hi-jinx. An electrified pasttime for those who have no business on these darkened sidewalks whatsoever. And here's where the sidewalk ends. Estelle Longacre, a young society woman from the upper west side of New York, took too many footsteps along this path. Her body was found in a trunk in an overgrown alley. Local gangster, Black Jack, seems to have claims on the departed Estelle as well as her well-heeled relations living in a mansion suffering from disrepair. What's Estelle's story and what was she doing in that crime-ridden neighborhood late at night? Frank Malloy, ex police officer and newly established private detective, has been hired by Black Jack to find Estelle's killer. Previous to this, Frank was hired to find a newsboy living in that same neighborhood. Frank found him alright......dead and taken to the morgue. Is there a connection between Estelle and the newsboy? Someone is hiding secrets and the dead refuse to speak. Victoria Thompson is now on #20 in her Gaslight Mystery series. I've read every one. But fear not. #20 reads as a standalone and Thompson fills in the tried and true characters with enough background information that there is no confusion. Frank's wife, Sarah, was once a midwife working among the downcast and she knows these streets well. She's a straightforward woman who would rather take the reigns than sit in the back of the carriage. Thompson has infused this current offering with a dark side. In fact, she never hesitates to set episodes of questionable adult behavior amongst the pages of her books. Human nature seems to weave its way from the earliest time periods to the present. The scenery changes, but the bad actors continue to be bad. Crime is still crime no matter what the length of the hemline. I'd recommend Murder in the Bowery if you're looking for a fast read with a historical flavor and interesting characters. No need to swim back to #1. I just heard that #21 will be out in the Spring. Will certainly be on a trolley heading in that direction. Bravo, Ms. Thompson.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Jonetta

    Private Investigator Frank Malloy is hired by Will Bert to find the man’s younger brother, Freddie, who was separated from him five years ago when they were part of the Orphan Train taking homeless children to potential parents out west. Frank and his assistant, Gino Donatelli, locate Freddie but before he’s reunited with his brother, ends up murdered. As Frank and Gino explore further, they find themselves immersed in a unique underworld and stumble onto another murder that is connected to Fred Private Investigator Frank Malloy is hired by Will Bert to find the man’s younger brother, Freddie, who was separated from him five years ago when they were part of the Orphan Train taking homeless children to potential parents out west. Frank and his assistant, Gino Donatelli, locate Freddie but before he’s reunited with his brother, ends up murdered. As Frank and Gino explore further, they find themselves immersed in a unique underworld and stumble onto another murder that is connected to Freddie’s death. I’ve know the term “slumming” forever but didn’t know its origins until this story where it was an actual, organized activity. Who knew? I also learned about the newsboys (and sometimes girls) who were the primary distributors of the daily newspapers for the Hearst and Pulitzer publications, along with what was there infamous strike at the turn of the 19th century. I enjoy this series equally for the historical aspects as well as the escapades of Frank & Sarah. I always seem to learn something from the stories and this was no exception. I enjoyed this one, which also included a truly unsavory element. There were lots of red herrings that temporarily distracted me but I came close to the right solution. It was also nice to see how things closer to home are developing for Frank & Sarah. This story put the series back on track for me as the case was interesting and didn’t get mired in a lot of musing about it. And, Sarah’s future plans should provide lots of opportunities for other potential storylines. This is still a favorite series.

  4. 4 out of 5

    ♥ Sandi ❣

    4 stars ~~~ to be published May 2, 2017 A young lady of social standings, Estelle Longacre, is murdered. Why was she in the Bowery? A young news boy also goes missing on the same night. Is there a connection? Frank Malloy, Private Investigator, and his partner are hired to find the news boy, "Two Toes". Frank's wife, Sarah, also becomes involved in the search of Two Toes and in solving Estelle's murder. Newsies, gangsters, and extended families all play a part in this well played out mystery. Sle 4 stars ~~~ to be published May 2, 2017 A young lady of social standings, Estelle Longacre, is murdered. Why was she in the Bowery? A young news boy also goes missing on the same night. Is there a connection? Frank Malloy, Private Investigator, and his partner are hired to find the news boy, "Two Toes". Frank's wife, Sarah, also becomes involved in the search of Two Toes and in solving Estelle's murder. Newsies, gangsters, and extended families all play a part in this well played out mystery. Sleuthing at its best. The words and ideas both flow in this story. The ease of reading allowed me to devour this novel in two settings. The historical emphasis was fairly accurate and the characters, for the most part, are pleasing. Pleasantly surprised!! Normally I would not start a book in a series anywhere but with book #1. Even though I was not acquainted with the author, the synopsis of this book appealed to me enough to take a chance. I am happy that I did. I will now go to book #1 and read the series from the beginning. Thank you First to Read for this digital ARC

  5. 5 out of 5

    Purple Country Girl (Sandy)

    I received a copy of Murder in the Bowery via Penguin’s First to Read program. Years ago, I read the first few books in Victoria Thompson’s Gaslight Mystery series featuring midwife Sarah Brandt (now Malloy) and Detective Frank Malloy set in Victorian New York. I remember enjoying them but I have no idea why I never continued the series. A lot has changed since then - not unexpected considering this is the 20th book in the series. What hasn’t changed: the charming characters, intriguing mysteries I received a copy of Murder in the Bowery via Penguin’s First to Read program. Years ago, I read the first few books in Victoria Thompson’s Gaslight Mystery series featuring midwife Sarah Brandt (now Malloy) and Detective Frank Malloy set in Victorian New York. I remember enjoying them but I have no idea why I never continued the series. A lot has changed since then - not unexpected considering this is the 20th book in the series. What hasn’t changed: the charming characters, intriguing mysteries and lovely period detail. In this outing, Frank is no longer a police detective. He is now a private investigator assisted by another former policeman, Gino Donatelli. When a young man named Will Bert comes to their office asking for help finding his little brother, they quickly take the case. Will tells them that, at a young age, they were orphaned and the Children’s Aid Society sent them to Minnesota on the Orphan Train so they could be adopted by a family there. The brothers were separated, Will ended up with a shop keeper and his brother Freddie with another family. At some point, Freddie was sent back to New York where he became a newsboy. Will has inherited the shop and has money and he wants to take care of Freddie, who is now thirteen. As Frank and Gino begin to look for Freddie, they realize it is not going to be easy. There is no record of Will or Freddie Bert having been sent on the Orphan Train in the Children’s Aid Society files. Also, the newsboys are on strike, demanding more money from the big newspapers, so the boys, including Freddie, are not on their usual corners selling papers. When they finally do locate Freddie, he seems confused and is not eager to be reunited with Will which makes Frank and Gino start to question Will’s story and motives. While pursuing Freddie, they end up looking into the death of a young, wealthy woman named Estelle Longacre, whose dangerous behavior led her into the Bowery and into the life of a gangster - this gangster was also in Freddie’s life. Is Estelle’s death connected to Freddie and/or Will? Is it all just a coincidence? Frank is determined to get to the bottom of it all with the help of not just Gino but his wife, Sarah. Murder in the Bowery is fast-paced and well-written. I love the Victorian New York setting as well. It can be read as a standalone as you learn enough about Frank and Sarah throughout the book that you will not feel lost. For a deeper connection with these characters, starting the beginning is always ideal but not completely necessary. I think it’s a good series for lovers of historical mysteries. If the subject matter was not so dark, it could almost be classified on the cozy side but it is a little too gritty. I’ll definitely be returning to this series in the future.

  6. 5 out of 5

    OpenBookSociety.com

    http://openbooksociety.com/article/mu... Murder in the Bowery Gaslight Mystery, Book #20 By Victoria Thompson ISBN 9781101987117 Author Website: victoriathompson.com Brought to you by OBS Reviewer Jeanie Synopsis: The latest Gaslight Mystery from the bestselling author of “Murder in Morningside Heights” finds Sarah Brandt and Frank Malloy searching for a connection between a murdered newsie and a high society woman with dangerous habits. Frank Malloy’s latest client is the well-dressed Will Bert. He s se http://openbooksociety.com/article/mu... Murder in the Bowery Gaslight Mystery, Book #20 By Victoria Thompson ISBN 9781101987117 Author Website: victoriathompson.com Brought to you by OBS Reviewer Jeanie Synopsis: The latest Gaslight Mystery from the bestselling author of “Murder in Morningside Heights” finds Sarah Brandt and Frank Malloy searching for a connection between a murdered newsie and a high society woman with dangerous habits. Frank Malloy’s latest client is the well-dressed Will Bert. He s searching for his brother, a newsboy named Freddie, so he can share his new financial good fortune. Frank makes quick work of the case and locates Freddie, but a happy reunion between brothers is not in the cards. When Will’s name is mentioned, Freddie runs off only to be found dead a short time later. Suspicious, Frank tracks down Will who spins a tale of lust and deceit involving a young society woman, Estelle Longacre, also recently deceased. Frank can’t be sure if Estelle’s risky behavior and the company she kept was to blame, or if her own ruthless family had a hand in her death. Frank will need Sarah s help to unearth the dark secrets of the wealthy Longacres and to discover if there is a connection between Estelle and Freddie s death. Together they must navigate a perilous underground web of treachery to find the truth.” (Goodreads) Review: Murder in the Bowery is the Victoria Thompson’s 20th novel in her Gaslight Mystery series, and it is fresh and fabulous. Her historical research history is thorough, especially the manner in which she includes real events. Her eye for detail adds rich colors and shadows to the sweeping landscape of 1899 New York City. Frank and Gino are ready and waiting for a new client in Frank’s PI agency. Will Bert is a well-spoken young man who is looking for his younger brother Freddie. He claims that they were separated as a result of going west on the Orphan Train several years earlier. Will inherited the shop and holdings of the man he had worked for and wanted to take his brother to Minnesota to share his good fortune. It sounds like a straightforward case, but to find a 13-year old boy who may or may not have returned to NYC after leaving his adoptive family sounded quite literally like a needle in a haystack. Frank had empathy for Will; he and Gino checked various sources as they looked for Freddie. The more they search, something doesn’t add up so they decide that when they do find Freddie, they will not tell Will where to find him – that they would let Freddie know where Will was staying so he could choose. After all, Will had no place for them to find him, and life – and trust – was different in the Bowery, where Freddie was familiar with a gangster, Black Jack Robinson, yet was hiding from his regular places. Will was surprised they found him so quickly, seemed to recognize Black Jack’s name, yet would come back the next afternoon to see if there was an update. The next day, however, Freddie had been found dead, and the body of a well-dressed young woman had been found near where he was a couple days earlier. Certain that the murders were connected based on the method of murder, Frank and Gino put forth their best work to not only find the young woman’s family but to find who murdered Freddie. What a surprise they had for Will the next time he arrived at their office for an update…. If I needed the help of private detectives, these would be the type of guys I would want on my side! Frank had been a police detective and Gino a young police officer with before opening the office. Even though, with the inheritance that surprised Frank, he and his bride would not have to work, Frank is diligent, not one to sit around; he looks at both the details and the big picture. Gino was a young man with good instincts who continues to learn from Frank and is a most excellent partner for him. Frank’s bride, Sarah, worked as a midwife, and their nursemaid, Maeve and Gino are heading towards being a couple. Sarah, Maeve, and even Sarah’s mother (who has secretly enjoyed the roles she played) provide helpful suggestions and sometimes participate in the men’s work when needed. Each of the characters are finely detailed, even those who may have minor or temporary roles. Even though I am a comparatively recent fan, I love this historical cozy mystery series! And thankfully, each novel in the series can be read as a standalone as the author fills in the blanks about the regular characters. This mystery intensifies with every clue, every person, which makes it that much more interesting. The historical element, the characters, and the challenge of the multi-faceted mystery make it a five-star novel for me. We see a slice of life for those in the bowery in contrast to those who have huge homes and servants, and everyone in between. We also see people with various physical and emotional challenges, from Frank’s son, who is deaf, to those who endured incestuous family relations, and young children and teens who are orphaned. While we think progress occurs too quickly in our lifetime, the people at the turn of the 20th century sometimes struggled to get used to telephones and early days of motorcars such as Gino wanted Frank to purchase. Peeling through the layers of deception to try to understand who the bad guy(s)/ gal(s) are is a challenge, and I’m not sure who I am more surprised by – those who are innocent or those who are guilty! Surprise it is, however, and the mysteries are solved leaving no loose ends. I highly recommend Murder in the Bowery, especially to those who enjoy well-written and executed cozy mysteries and historical mysteries from the end of the 19th century.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Phrynne

    I really enjoyed all the domesticity in this one. All the characters we have grown to love over the course of the series so far got a mention even the children. Sarah played a big role in catching the criminals which pleased me too. As usual the story included heaps of lovely historical detail such as the newsboys strike which I had never heard of before. I see some reviews criticising these later books in the series as being too formulaic. They certainly do follow a predictable pattern but I re I really enjoyed all the domesticity in this one. All the characters we have grown to love over the course of the series so far got a mention even the children. Sarah played a big role in catching the criminals which pleased me too. As usual the story included heaps of lovely historical detail such as the newsboys strike which I had never heard of before. I see some reviews criticising these later books in the series as being too formulaic. They certainly do follow a predictable pattern but I really don't mind! I enjoy the characters, the stories and the history and keep looking forward to the next book.

  8. 5 out of 5

    LadyJBookishNook

    For all my reviews, visit my blog at http://ladyjbookishnook.blogspot.com My Review I totally LOVED Murder in the Bowery by Victoria Thompson. This was my first read by this author and I have added her to my favorite author list. This is book #20 in the Gaslight Mystery Series. I believe it can be read as a stand-alone since the author does a good job introducing all of the characters and I was able to pick right up and understand what is going on. There were a few times the author mentioned a For all my reviews, visit my blog at http://ladyjbookishnook.blogspot.com My Review I totally LOVED Murder in the Bowery by Victoria Thompson. This was my first read by this author and I have added her to my favorite author list. This is book #20 in the Gaslight Mystery Series. I believe it can be read as a stand-alone since the author does a good job introducing all of the characters and I was able to pick right up and understand what is going on. There were a few times the author mentioned a certain character had been involved in other mysteries in the series but it wasn’t something that you needed to know to enjoy this one. This is a historical mystery set in 1899 in New York City. The main characters are Frank Malloy, a private detective. His wife, Sarah, a former midwife. Frank’s partner in the detective agency, Gino Donatelli, and Maeve Smith, nursemaid for the Malloy children. All four of these characters work together to solve the mystery. I loved the characters in this dialogue-rich book. The story starts with a man hiring Frank to find a newsboy that he claims is his younger brother. He says they were separated about six years ago when they were sent to Minnesota on an Orphan Train but the man thinks his brother is back in New York City. Once Frank begins investigating, he soon realizes there is much more to the mystery. This is a fast-paced read that held my interest throughout. I loved the author’s note at the end where she shares what characters were real and what events in the book were true historical events. I would recommend this book to those who love historical mysteries. After reading this I ordered the first three books in the series. I am now a Victoria Thompson fan!! I am giving this one 5 STARS ***** Thank you Victoria Thompson, Berkley Books and Penguin’s First-to-Read program for providing me with a digital copy of this book to read in exchange for an honest review.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Quirkyreader

    As previously mentioned, I received this as an ARC from Penguin. This well written and fast paced story included historical references to Newsies, The Orphan Trains, Five Points, and the morgue of 19th Century New York City. Being a history nut, I have learned and studied about these subjects before. I liked the way how Thompson tied them all together for the story. I haven't read the other books from the series, but it is good as a stand alone story.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Linda

    Estelle Longacre, a young lady and member of New York's society, was expected to act above reproach. Instead, she dressed as a man and held on to secrets. In the end, she was murdered. I have been a fan of Sarah and Frank since I first read Murder on Astor Place. I enjoyed the slow-building camaraderie and dark -often disturbing!- mysteries set among late nineteenth-century New York City. I appreciated the actions of the secondary characters: many who'd eventually become family. I am not sure bu Estelle Longacre, a young lady and member of New York's society, was expected to act above reproach. Instead, she dressed as a man and held on to secrets. In the end, she was murdered. I have been a fan of Sarah and Frank since I first read Murder on Astor Place. I enjoyed the slow-building camaraderie and dark -often disturbing!- mysteries set among late nineteenth-century New York City. I appreciated the actions of the secondary characters: many who'd eventually become family. I am not sure but I expected when the couple finally married there would be a chemistry between Frank and Sarah: a sizzle. I still wanted a good level of suspense with a few clues but I needed everyone to feel three-dimensional: I expected depth. I was disappointed. While reading Murder in the Bowery I actually skimmed three chapters. Honestly, I did! There was a flow of words but little action. I thought the plot was a composite of incidents that were found in earlier stories. Frank and Sarah with Gino and Maeve were not as sharp as I assumed they would be with their combined past experiences. I am giving Murder in the Bowery a charitable three stars.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Kat

    The series isn't working for me any longer! I started the series because Malloy and Sarah were investigating but I can't enjoy that part anymore because of Gino and Meave! Their characters are so uninteresting to me and the attempts of Sarah to bring them together as a couple is at least boring! Malloy and Sarah hardly speak alone anymore because Gino and Maeve are always present! The mystery part of the book was good but I didn't like how Frank and Sarah managed the end of the case! I would have d The series isn't working for me any longer! I started the series because Malloy and Sarah were investigating but I can't enjoy that part anymore because of Gino and Meave! Their characters are so uninteresting to me and the attempts of Sarah to bring them together as a couple is at least boring! Malloy and Sarah hardly speak alone anymore because Gino and Maeve are always present! The mystery part of the book was good but I didn't like how Frank and Sarah managed the end of the case! I would have dropped this series if I hadn't purchased already the next two installments! Mrs. Thompson in her attempt to spice the series up only managed to make it uninteresting in some aspects! Hope she does better in the future or end this series for good! I really wish in a future installment to see again Malloy and Sarah work alone on some case and maybe give it another try in this case!

  12. 5 out of 5

    Robin

    Private Detective Frank Malloy takes a new case when Will Bert asks him to find his long lost brother, Freddie. Will and Freddie were separated when they were both sent west on the orphan train. Will believes Freddie returned to New York City and may be working as a newsboy. Frank and his partner Gino scour the city looking for Freddie. When they finally find him, Freddie runs away when he learns Will is searching for him. A day later, they discover that Freddie has been murdered. Frank questions Private Detective Frank Malloy takes a new case when Will Bert asks him to find his long lost brother, Freddie. Will and Freddie were separated when they were both sent west on the orphan train. Will believes Freddie returned to New York City and may be working as a newsboy. Frank and his partner Gino scour the city looking for Freddie. When they finally find him, Freddie runs away when he learns Will is searching for him. A day later, they discover that Freddie has been murdered. Frank questions Will's story about searching for his brother. Will tells him that he actually works for Gangster John Robinson who is looking for Freddie. Robinson believes Freddie may have seen Robinson's girlfriend, uptown society girl Estelle Longacre, the night she disappeared. When it is discovered that Estelle is also dead, Frank, with the help of his wife Sarah, sets out to ascertain who killed Estelle and Freddie. The twentieth book in the Gaslight Mystery series was an entertaining read. The mystery hinges on a big secret in the Longacre family that wasn't hard to figure out at all. But I still wasn't able to uncover who killed Estelle and Freddie. My rating: 4.5 Stars.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Piyangie

    Murder in the Bowery is one of the good murder-mystery stories of the series. It reminded me why I first liked this series (apart from my liking the main character duo, Sarah and Frank). The plot is based on a pretty disturbing premise but the overall story was interesting. With a good amount of twists and turns the story flows well not giving away the criminals and how the murders were committed. I enjoyed the guessing game and some of my theories came pretty near the truth. Overall it was an Murder in the Bowery is one of the good murder-mystery stories of the series. It reminded me why I first liked this series (apart from my liking the main character duo, Sarah and Frank). The plot is based on a pretty disturbing premise but the overall story was interesting. With a good amount of twists and turns the story flows well not giving away the criminals and how the murders were committed. I enjoyed the guessing game and some of my theories came pretty near the truth. Overall it was an engaging read and I enjoyed it. I liked the way the author has finally settled her main characters Sarah, Malloy, Gino and Maeve. I enjoyed their personal tidbits as much of the story. However, I've decided that this will be my last read of the series. I've read up to the twentieth installment (missing few along the way) and I wanted to stop at a juncture where I will carry fond memories of the series and its characters. And with this installment I believe I've reached that juncture.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Barb in Maryland

    3.5 stars for the latest in this long running series. It is always a pleasure to catch up with these characters. Frank Malloy (former cop, now private investigator) and his wife Sarah (midwife by trade, advocate for poor women by avocation) have settled into their married life. Their household runs smoothly; routines have been established--it is nice to catch a glimpse of their world. I really enjoyed the on going flirtation between Maeve and Gino--they are so cute. Frank's mother was merely a b 3.5 stars for the latest in this long running series. It is always a pleasure to catch up with these characters. Frank Malloy (former cop, now private investigator) and his wife Sarah (midwife by trade, advocate for poor women by avocation) have settled into their married life. Their household runs smoothly; routines have been established--it is nice to catch a glimpse of their world. I really enjoyed the on going flirtation between Maeve and Gino--they are so cute. Frank's mother was merely a background character this time around, though she did have a good line at the end. Sarah's mother had a small cameo near the beginning, but not much beyond that. Well, the author can't give everyone a big role or the book would be bloated! The blurb gives a good idea of Frank's newest case. What starts out as a simple missing person case quickly becomes a case with two murders. Did the same person murder young Freddie(newsboy/street child) and Estelle(society girl who definitely should not have been anywhere near the Bowery)? Sarah makes use of her society connections to delve into Estelle's family background, which turns out to be a sordid mess. Her dying father is a control freak, her aunt is self-centered, her (nominal)cousin Norman is a weak young man. Frank and Gino get involved with the newsboys and a local gangster with dreams of turning respectable. The plot is convoluted and kept me guessing on who killed whom and why? I felt sorry for both young victims and didn't really see how justice was going to be done. I'm not thrilled with the ending, though the author has Sarah make a good case for why it was considered 'for the best'. The author's afterword is an interesting look into a couple of things that feature in the story. Well worth a read. New comers should not be put off by the fact that this is part of a long-running series. The author drops in enough background info on the main characters to bring them up to speed.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Rebecca

    The historical events in this one were quite interesting. I just love this series.

  16. 5 out of 5

    A.M.G. ☮Hippie/Fantasia☮

    Rating: 3.4 / 5 Much as I hate to say it, I think that Ms. Thompson's formula on this series is getting rather stale. Reasons explained below: The same plot devices are being used over and over and over again, and... It's getting far too predictable, which is the absolute worst thing that a mystery can become. Essentially, where before I loved seeing the characters in action because I couldn't think of what they would do next, now I feel as though they're going through their processes in a step-by- Rating: 3.4 / 5 Much as I hate to say it, I think that Ms. Thompson's formula on this series is getting rather stale. Reasons explained below: The same plot devices are being used over and over and over again, and... It's getting far too predictable, which is the absolute worst thing that a mystery can become. Essentially, where before I loved seeing the characters in action because I couldn't think of what they would do next, now I feel as though they're going through their processes in a step-by-step motion, sort of a "yeah, we've done this before and now we'll do it again, blah blah blah" attitude. It just isn't engaging, and doesn't make me care about them solving the mystery. Without the intrigue of the "how", the "what" just doesn't seem to matter as much. The "twist" to the story is on that Thompson has already used before, so... I've already seen it, and it's not as shocking as what she probably intended. This leads me to conclude that Thompson really is grasping at straws and, having lost inspiration and finding herself short of original ideas, is thinking to recycle old ones that her readers have probably forgotten about. If I were a reader going through this series from the beginning and reading each book in the year it came out, then, yes, in twenty years or so I might forget one of the old plot twists that she included. But, sadly, having read them all this year, the plot "twist" in this one is literally just a rehash of something that Thompson's already written better in a previous novel in this series. Thompson is shying away from the cute personal tidbits of the series, and that's bad because... The personal tidbits were also some of the most enjoyable bits of what I was reading. Not only did they show character development in ways that being the simple detective could not, but they also gave well-needed relief from an otherwise tense plot of murder. This novel isn't particularly tense, mind you, but I'm sure that Thompson intended it to be, so there's no excuse for why she isn't developing her characters more. For instance, why in the heck does Sarah keep referring to Frank as "Malloy", even in private when it's just between the two of them? I mean, for goodness' sake, they are married, so why the formality? It just doesn't make sense, and thus annoys me. Also, what about the cuteness of Catherine and Brian being exploited more beyond just "demanding the adults' attention, which of course they give at the appropriate moments, etc."? Or Maeve and Gino being more romantic together and also contributing more to the mystery solving? This is one of the most stale elements by far, and characteristic of writer's block--when you don't know how to move the characters forward. OVERALL, my biggest problem is that... It feels like there is no plot development in this series anymore. A lot of people pinpoint Frank's becoming a millionaire as when things went downhill, but for me, it happened a bit earlier than that, and I kept waiting for it to pick back up again. After Book 12 is when it started to go downhill for me as a series, with a slight break for Books 16 and 17, which I quite enjoyed. But, basically, it seems that Thompson has worn out her own characters and plot ideas, which is what happens all too often with a series that has gone on for too long. Basically, once you've "milked out" all the good ideas and you don't have anymore, you resort to any desperate measures to keep the series going, even at the inevitable compromise of quality. Very few series manage to make something better and better after so many books, and, unfortunately, Thompson is not one of those few. My problems can be summed up as follows: - there is no plot progression for Frank and Sarah--they have both become generic and boring, with no personality development, no insight into their married life or their family life, nothing. - there is no development for side characters like Gino and Maeve either, because Thompson seems content to leave them in the corner of "null and void", from whence she cannot pick them back up again, lacking any ideas or ability to do so. - the mysteries are getting repetitive, and the methods never change. In other words, I'm starting to lose my grasp on why I should care about this series at all anymore, since Thompson is clearly half-assing her efforts at this point. Out of respect for what I have liked so far, I'm refraining from giving this book any lower than a 3-star rating, but, as a whole, I'm really going to have to put this series on hold until I stomach the nerve to continue on with the two remaining books. Unless Thompson really picks up the story in some way, I'm afraid she's going to lose a lot more readers.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Tori

    ****Thank you to FirstToRead for letting me read this early!**** This review contains spoilers if you've read the first book in the Gaslight series but not this one!!!!!! I read so many historical mystery novels with strong female amateur detectives and I love them all. What I love about this series in particular is that it holds more of a spotlight on the more depraved and depressing plights of the people of the time. It doesn't sugar coat just how much money and influence can shape the law and c ****Thank you to FirstToRead for letting me read this early!**** This review contains spoilers if you've read the first book in the Gaslight series but not this one!!!!!! I read so many historical mystery novels with strong female amateur detectives and I love them all. What I love about this series in particular is that it holds more of a spotlight on the more depraved and depressing plights of the people of the time. It doesn't sugar coat just how much money and influence can shape the law and corrupt people and police alike and just how accepted it was. I was a bit disappointed in part of the resolution, because it seemed like Thompson took many elements from her first novel and shuffled them, added some Newsies and gangsters, and called it a new installment. I'm actually shocked the characters, as smart as they are never commented on how similar the events were. So yeah, I had hoped for there to be a twist where we'd think it would end like that one had and it wouldn't, but no. Nearly the same. This is the sole reason I can't rate it above 3. I liked it, but the first installment had more action, was actually surprising and Sarah Brandt had a stronger more prominent role. I look forward to reading all of the other ones I haven't got to yet, and hope Thompson continues this series. I know she isn't out of ideas yet.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Stacie Haden

    This one has way too much filler material, in that things were over explained to the point of irritation. First time I've run into that in this series. The historical aspects of the story were good. The dialogue was inane and repetitious.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Anne - Books of My Heart

    Another one bites the dust. I enjoy this series so much! I love that Sarah and Frank continue to be the compassionate and caring people they have always been. And they are winning so many new fans and allies.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Susan in NC

    So glad this series is keeping up the satisfying puzzles and great characters, even after Sarah and Frank finally married a couple books ago. Still one of my favorite historical mystery series!

  21. 4 out of 5

    William Richardson

    Another great Gaslight Mystery. Love this series because it gives me a good idea of how people lived in the late 1800's in New York. I have learned so much about the people and the life style of the different classes of people that lived in New York.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Shirley Schwartz

    I really enjoyed this newest book in the gaslight mystery series. Sarah and Frank Malloy are asked to find a young newspaper salesmen on the streets of late 19 century New York because his brother wants to find him in order that he might share some of his good fortune with him. But as they start searching they discover a much darker ulterior motive for finding the boy.. They start delving into some old and grotesque family secrets from a New York society family, and a few bodies start showing up I really enjoyed this newest book in the gaslight mystery series. Sarah and Frank Malloy are asked to find a young newspaper salesmen on the streets of late 19 century New York because his brother wants to find him in order that he might share some of his good fortune with him. But as they start searching they discover a much darker ulterior motive for finding the boy.. They start delving into some old and grotesque family secrets from a New York society family, and a few bodies start showing up. This was a very enjoyable mystery that touched on the lives of the "newsies" found all over the city in 19 century New York, and also on the orphan trains that moved homeless children around the country to families in the west that wanted to adopt them.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Toni

    Thank you to Penguin's First to Read Program for providing an advanced reading copy . I had not realized that this was part of the Gaslight Mystery Series by Victoria Thompson and almost the 18th book in the series ;however, I had no trouble with reading and enjoying the book as a stand- alone read. The author painted a vivid picture of New York City at the end of the 19th century (1899).She provided an insightful glimpse in to the life of the "Newsies", the lads that sold the major newspapers o Thank you to Penguin's First to Read Program for providing an advanced reading copy . I had not realized that this was part of the Gaslight Mystery Series by Victoria Thompson and almost the 18th book in the series ;however, I had no trouble with reading and enjoying the book as a stand- alone read. The author painted a vivid picture of New York City at the end of the 19th century (1899).She provided an insightful glimpse in to the life of the "Newsies", the lads that sold the major newspapers on the street corners for a penny apiece. They went on strike against Hearst and Pulitzer , the two largest newspapers, in 1899. The main characters were likable and capable and although their backstories were not necessary to the plot , I am sure that many a reader would be interested in going back to the beginning of the series to learn more of their pasts. I found the mystery to be interesting yet not extremely complicated . It made for an easy and enjoyable quick read. I think readers who enjoy cozy mysteries and readers who have enjoyed Brenda Joyce 's Francesca Cahill series would find it worth their time. Of course, there is not as much romance as in Joyce's books.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Debbie Maskus

    I am on a roll in reading Victoria Thompson whose mysteries provide hours of entertainment. In this caper, we descend into the Bowery, an unsavory section of New York where ladies do not venture. Victoria Thompson enjoys throwing a little history into her stories and we learn of the newsboys strike in 1899 when newsboys refused to sell newspapers in order to get better wages and the plight of Orphan Trains where orphans in New York were transported to farms in Minnesota, Iowa, and others farming I am on a roll in reading Victoria Thompson whose mysteries provide hours of entertainment. In this caper, we descend into the Bowery, an unsavory section of New York where ladies do not venture. Victoria Thompson enjoys throwing a little history into her stories and we learn of the newsboys strike in 1899 when newsboys refused to sell newspapers in order to get better wages and the plight of Orphan Trains where orphans in New York were transported to farms in Minnesota, Iowa, and others farming states. Victoria Thompson also mentions that the wealthy citizens would seek guides to lead them into special places in the Bowery so these wealthy could see how the slums looked, hence the term “slumming”. We also see that wealth does not mean respectability and those in the Bowery may act better than their wealthy peers.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Tammie

    The latest Gaslight Mystery finds Sarah and Frank Malloy searching for a connection between a murdered newsie and a high society woman with dangerous habits. What was a young society woman doing slumming in the Bowery? That's what Frank and Sarah want to know after her body is discovered there. In the beginning Frank is hired to find a missing 13 year old boy but he and Gino end up trying to find out if there is a connection to the death of the young woman. This murder mystery ended up having q The latest Gaslight Mystery finds Sarah and Frank Malloy searching for a connection between a murdered newsie and a high society woman with dangerous habits. What was a young society woman doing slumming in the Bowery? That's what Frank and Sarah want to know after her body is discovered there. In the beginning Frank is hired to find a missing 13 year old boy but he and Gino end up trying to find out if there is a connection to the death of the young woman. This murder mystery ended up having quite a few twists and turns and I was surprised that it kept me guessing about some of them. The subplot of Sarah establishing the hospital that was started in the last book progresses here and I like what this could bring to future books in the series. It reminds me a lot of what Hester does in the William Monk series by Anne Perry. I liked the talks that Sarah and Malloy had while in their private sitting room. They added a bit of playfulness to the book and gave us a tiny bit of insight into the romantic side of their relationship. I would have liked a little bit more though. I also enjoyed the historical details about the newsies and the newspaper strike, and the orphan trains that were included in the book. Overall this was a good addition to the series. Review also posted at Writings of a Reader

  26. 5 out of 5

    Pamela

    I always have enjoyed this series. I have followed it since book one. Sarah, and Frank had a,long courtship, and her readers were pleased, to finally see them setting up their family. This includes Frank's mother, his son, who is deaf, but can sign, her daughter Catherine, the children's nanny Maeve, and Hattie. Sarah's mother likes to stick her nose in the cases as well., and their neighbor, who has helped Sarah long before Frank came along, but is very superstitious. This one was about a missi I always have enjoyed this series. I have followed it since book one. Sarah, and Frank had a,long courtship, and her readers were pleased, to finally see them setting up their family. This includes Frank's mother, his son, who is deaf, but can sign, her daughter Catherine, the children's nanny Maeve, and Hattie. Sarah's mother likes to stick her nose in the cases as well., and their neighbor, who has helped Sarah long before Frank came along, but is very superstitious. This one was about a missing news boy, but ended up involving a missing young woman, as well. The story was very good, with twists, and turns. I had to change my opinion of who was doing the evil deeds several time. The characters, are well fleshed out, so you can see them in the Bowery. The storyline was exciting, but tragic as well. The poor are used, and hurt, but being rich is not always a protection. I loved the ending. I just gobble these books up. Sarah being a midwife, always is used in some medical way, to help. Plus I love the fact, that she is trying to make a difference,, to the forgotten class, especially young prostitutes..It is sad that what takes place in this book, is still very relevant today.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Joann

    This is the 20th book in the gaslight-era series by author Victoria Thompson. I've followed this series from the first and have never tired of reading her novels. They are so well written and you can tell she does a great amount of research for that time period in New York City. In this book we have private detective Frank Malloy looking for a missing newsie, one of the street urchins that hawk newspapers. You also have a young socialite who likes to do risky things which could put her life at r This is the 20th book in the gaslight-era series by author Victoria Thompson. I've followed this series from the first and have never tired of reading her novels. They are so well written and you can tell she does a great amount of research for that time period in New York City. In this book we have private detective Frank Malloy looking for a missing newsie, one of the street urchins that hawk newspapers. You also have a young socialite who likes to do risky things which could put her life at risk. It's always fun to be back with the same characters and I loved that the old neighbor, Mrs. Ellsworth, showed up. Again, I didn't figure out who the killers were but then maybe I'm not that astute. An enjoyable read as usual. A 4.5 read.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Cindy Scheffler

    I received a copy of this from Penguin's First To Read program and was delighted to read it. What a wonderful mystery set in the past with enough truth weaved into it without it being to boring. This is part of a series but it stand alone as well as part of the series. It had me guessing to the end on who the killer was. I will be looking for more by this author.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Theresa

    Thank you to Penguin's first to read program for providing me with an advanced copy of this book. Murder in the Bowery is the 20th book of Thompson's Gaslight Mystery series. You wouldn't know this was part of a series by reading it. The book is perfect just read as a stand alone. You still get a feel for the characters, and they all have really great personalities. The book takes place in New York City during the 1899 newsies strike. One newsboy and a young woman are found dead in the Bowery with Thank you to Penguin's first to read program for providing me with an advanced copy of this book. Murder in the Bowery is the 20th book of Thompson's Gaslight Mystery series. You wouldn't know this was part of a series by reading it. The book is perfect just read as a stand alone. You still get a feel for the characters, and they all have really great personalities. The book takes place in New York City during the 1899 newsies strike. One newsboy and a young woman are found dead in the Bowery with a list of suspects that just seems to get longer as the book goes on. Not many writers can accurately combine a mystery with historical fiction. Thompson clearly has done her research, providing such historically accurate details that you wouldn't believe were true: from names to events and tours. The one thing I really loved about this book was the relationship between Frank and Sarah Malloy. Despite being a time period where women were still viewed as being almost property, Frank treated his wife as an absolute equal. He valued her opinion and even included her in the investigation. Even Black Jack Robinson, a gangster from the Bowery, notices the strangeness of it. But if you read this, you could tell from Sarah's personality she wouldn't accept anything less than pure equality. Thompson really takes the reader on so many twists and turns during the investigation, leading you to so many different possible conclusions, while still leaving you shocked at the very end. Thompson really puts everything on the table to keep the reader involved and interested up until the very end. I never read any other book in this series, but this book inspired me to go back to book one.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Betty Strohecker

    Is it possible to wish a murderer is not punished? In this thrilling Gaslight mystery Victoria Thompson portrays the lives of her characters in such a way that this reader felt empathy and sympathy for the killer and the victim, in at least one case. When Frank is hired to find a missing newsboy, he and Gino are led on a search that uncovers two murders. Sarah is also drawn into the case because of her very special knowledge and detective skills. Thompson takes us into the gritty, dangerous, and Is it possible to wish a murderer is not punished? In this thrilling Gaslight mystery Victoria Thompson portrays the lives of her characters in such a way that this reader felt empathy and sympathy for the killer and the victim, in at least one case. When Frank is hired to find a missing newsboy, he and Gino are led on a search that uncovers two murders. Sarah is also drawn into the case because of her very special knowledge and detective skills. Thompson takes us into the gritty, dangerous, and sometimes despicable underbelly of New York life revealed in the Bowery. On this complicated and twisted journey, I found myself thinking I knew who the killer was on several occasions, only to find I was wrong until the very end. An interesting character was gangster Black Jack Robinson who owned most of the businesses in the Bowery and involved in the everyday lifestyle there. Historical highlights include the 1899 strike by the newsboys against the papers of William Hearst and Joseph Pulitzer. The plight and lives of the newsboys, many as young as nine, is expertly told, making it hard to realize how these orphans and cast aside children were able to survive. The Orphan Train run by the Children's Aid Society is also mentioned, an interesting event I have read much about. While Maeve is not featured as much in this novel, I expect to see more of her in the next book since Sarah has purchased the building that will hold her Maternity clinic for poor women, and Maeve is tasked with supervising the construction crew that will make the building safe and ready for use. This was an excellent offering in a highly recommended mystery series!

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