Sunday, December 7, 2014


Publisher:   Diversion Books
Published:   February 11, 2014
ISBN:  978-1626812536
Genre:   Historical Fiction
Format:   Ebook
Obtained via:  Netgalley
Reviewed by name and email address:  Gina


Queen Victoria’s daughter, Vicky, sits in Potsdam grieving the loss of her beloved Frederick III, Emperor of Germany.  Her husband taken from her all too soon her days are empty and frustrated because her son, Wilhelm continues to sacrifice the good of the country to add to his own coffers.  When her niece Princess Maud comes for a visit Vicky is delighted to see her until she hears Maud’s news—not only is a man on the loose on London’s streets killing women—the police believe it could be her nephew, the Crown Prince, Eddy.  Determined to help her family Vicky heads back to England with Maud.  There she begins her own search for the killer who comes to be called Jack the Ripper. 

Detective Inspector Thomas Edmondson is determined to find the Ripper and while suspects appear, he cannot shake the believe that the Crown Prince is the culprit behind the killings.  Worse, he believes there is a royal cover-up behind the killings. Determined to find out the truth he approaches the royal family.  But when he meets Vicky his world is turned upside down.  While his head screams he is a mere commoner, his heart pines for the princess.  He is not alone in his feelings—Vicky finds herself drawn more and more to Thomas. 

To protect her family, determined to track down the Ripper, Vicky puts herself in harm’s way.  Torn between duty and his heart Thomas seeks a way to bring both parts of his world together.  Can they find and keep each other before the Ripper tears them apart?

I very much enjoyed Mary Hart Perry’s first book on Queen Victoria’s daughters, the THE WILD PRINCESS.  THE WILD PRINCESS combined history, a fictional account of Queen Victoria’s children and romance into a well written, thoroughly enjoyable story.  I looked forward to reading THE SHADOW PRINCESS as soon as I heard about it.  It was a bit of a disappointment to me. 

It isn’t a bad story.  In fact the subject matter is pretty interesting in terms of who Vicky was and the whole Ripper story.  Just who was Jack the Ripper?  They never found out, but rumours abounded including that it was Crown Prince Edward.  Having a female member of Queen Victoria’s family investigate the murders, at first because of she tried to clear her nephew’s name and then because she cared to deeply for the women of London.  The whole mystique of Jack the Ripper has fascinated me for years.  It isn’t an easy subject to successfully carry off and Perry does it pretty well.

What disappointed me was that there were times I felt like the author couldn’t decide if she was writing a thriller, a romance or a young adult.  Not that you can’t have all three wrapped up in one good story—it was the jarring shifts from one genre to another without blending them that had me rolling my eyes a few times—mainly at the times the story slid into a young adult.  Vicky is a forty-something adult woman, the Empress of Germany and she will suddenly come across like a sixteen year old with a high school crush.  The elements just didn’t blend together all that well.

You do need to suspect belief in terms of Vicky and Thomas meeting in the first place—but their relationship does move along so you do want them to find a way to be together. 

As this is not a series there is no definitive order to the books.  I would, however, recommend reading THE WILD PRINCESS first because it is a much better told story and showcases Ms. Perry’s writing far better than THE SHADOW PRINCESS.

This is an objective review and not an endorsement of this book.

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