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Deception on Sable Hill #2, in the Chicago World's Fair Mystery series, by Shelley Gray
It's mid-September of 1893 and Eloisa Carstairs is the reigning beauty of Gilded Age Chicago society. To outsiders she appears to have it all. But Eloisa is living with a dark secret. Several months ago, she endured a horrible assault at the hands of Douglass Sloane, heir to one of Chicago's wealthiest families. Fearing the loss of her reputation, Eloisa confided in only one friend. That is, until she meets Detective Sean Ryan at a high-society ball.
Sean is on the outskirts of the wealthy Chicago lifestyle. Born into a poor Irish family, becoming a policeman was his best opportunity to ensure his future security. Despite society's restrictions, he is enamored with Eloisa Carstairs. Sean seethes inside at what he knows happened to her, and he will do anything to keep her safe-even if he can never earn her affections.
Number of Pages: 500
Vendor: Christian Fiction Series
Publication Date: 2015
|Dimensions: 8.50 X 5.81 (inches)|
Series: Chicago World's Fair Mystery
Inkwell Reviews4 Stars Out Of 5Review from inkwellreviews.comFebruary 13, 2017Inkwell ReviewsQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5After reading Secrets of Sloane House I was really looking forward to reading the second one in the Chicago Worlds Fair Mystery series. This book definitely exceeded my expectations. If you read the first one, you will be familiar with the character Eloisa Carstairs. I think this helped tremendously with the character development of her in this book. The characters were also very life-like and relatable. Sometimes its frustrating to read about a young lady who is perfect, flawless, because no one would ever measure up to that expectation.
Also, behind good character development is good writing. To my knowledge, Shelley Gray is an accomplished and veteran writer and it really showed though in this book.
Similar to the first one in this series, there was little talk or mention of God in this book. By no means did this book have anything inappropriate, but I dont ever recall Eloisa saying that she was a Christian. I may be wrong, and if so I do apologize.
I cant leave out the mystery aspect of this book. It was very well done. With twist and turns this book will leave you breathless until the very last page. Do to some events in this book I would not recommend this book for anyone younger than 15 years of age but perhaps more mature readers.
I enjoyed Secrets of Sloane House, but I loved Deception on Sable Hill. Hope you will too!
alwaysreadingAge: 55-65Gender: female4 Stars Out Of 5Better than I thought.April 2, 2016alwaysreadingAge: 55-65Gender: femaleQuality: 4Value: 4Meets Expectations: 4This is the second book in the Chicago World Fair mystery series.
A madman is terrorizing women in Chicagos upper society. Scaring their faces with a knife he has just struck again, only this time with fatal consequences.
Eloise Carstairs, who we met in the first book, has just begun to emerge back into society after month of seclusion. She lives with a dark secret that haunts her dreams and she feels she can never tell anyone for she knows she will be ruined in society.
Detective Sean Ryan has only one thing on his mind, to capture the Society Slasher. Along with his partner Owen Howard, known as the Gentleman detective, the pair track down every lead before the killer can strike again.
When the Eloise and Sean meet at a society ball that Eloise is attending and Sean is on watch duty, they are instantly attracted to each other.
I did like both Eloise and Sean. Even though they were from different classes, they begin their relationship as friends before falling in love. But in the wake of this, Eloises mother and father dont seem to put up much of fuss when they realize that they were in a relationship. This we very unrealistic and there is nothing to explain this change of heart.
I also would have like their relationship evolve more. I felt slightly cheated because one page they are friends and the next they are in love.
I liked the fact however, that Eloise could open up to Sean because of his job he lets her know that he has dealt with almost every human tragedy possible, so he can offer Eloise an emotionally safe haven. They each work to solve who this crime spree, both within the confines of the society limits. I just wish that there would be more of Sean and Owen working together.
On the upside, the author brings a whole cast of wonderful characters. We get to meet part of Seans family and get a glimpse of the ghetto where Sean grew up. Indeed we do get another romance when Owen and Seans youngest sister Katie decide that they are suited for each other.
The author does go into more of the history of the Chicagos fair. She gives us events, and buildings that actually existed that was fascinating.
As with the first book, the ending was something I didnt see coming, but also there was very little God, faith or need for a savior.
MagisterMichiganAge: 55-65Gender: female5 Stars Out Of 5Downton Abbey meets Chicago!January 5, 2016MagisterMichiganAge: 55-65Gender: femaleQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5Really enjoyed this middle book in Shelley Gray's series on the Chicago World's Fair. I read them out of order when given the last book first by the publisher, but even that didn't diminish the satisfaction. Had a bit of "Downton Abbey meets the Midwest" feel for me, except this pretty rich girl was an only child, and she fell for an Irish cop, not an Irish chauffeur.
Beautiful Eloisa Carstairs is trapped by the expectations of her social standing and doting parents. She is also at risk, like many young women, from the "Society Slasher" who is targeting the cream of Chicago's debutantes. This madman is somehow disfiguring (and eventually, even killing) eligible young women of the upper class. Eloisa's mother comments that such injuries inflicted upon one of her acquaintances are "unfortunate. They'll ruin her chances for an engagement this season." With such a callous comment, Eloisa realizes anew that she can never share her own secret scars - having been raped by Douglass Sloan (who subsequently took his own life), she feels tainted and unworthy of a high-society marriage.
But there is someone who knows her secrets and loves her all the more for it - the up and coming young detective, Sean Ryan. He, too, is a social outcast because of his Irish ancestry and working class job, and carries his own particular scars. But this diamond-in-the-rough is steadily being polished by his partner on the police force, gentleman detective Owen Howard. When Owen is suddenly the object of the Slasher's violent hatred, the stakes - and pace - go up a notch.
I was drawn to this book by its historical setting and the writing style of Shelley Gray. Neither disappointed, and I also enjoyed a pair of tender, unpredictable romances, and a twist in the plot...just when I thought I knew who the Slasher was! I recommend this book and the whole series to anyone who is interested in the changing social order of the late 19th century. While the culture and prejudices of this time are nothing like our world today, I think you'll find that hearts haven't changed at all.
KavRCanadaGender: female5 Stars Out Of 5Loved it!July 15, 2015KavRCanadaGender: femaleQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5Riveting second book in the A Chicago World's Fair Mystery series. And while this one does start where the first left off (including some carry-over characters and plot) you don't need to have read the first one in order to embrace Deception on Sable Hill. And it's definitely the kind of book you want to hug! :-)
The clash of class distinction in the late 19th century is at the heart of this story. Gray portrays the challenges of change for both the wealthy and the poor in vivid emotional detail. I especially found the contrast of opinion between a lower class man courting an upper class lady in comparison to an upper class gentleman wooing a lower class woman totally fascinating -- and annoying! Definitely adds an extra edge to the overall plot. Not to mention the romance.
I have to 'fess up and admit to adoring a self-made Irish hero and Sean Ryan fits the bill to a T. He's got that confident swagger, a wee bit of blarney dripping off the tip of his tongue and, saints preserve us -- that grin! Mind you, he needs the luck o' the Irish and no small amount of divine intervention to achieve his happily ever after! Of course, Eloisa is smitten. How could she not? But Gray has not been kind to this heroine -- not in the first book of the series and not in this one -- so be prepared to run a gamut of emotions during this read.
There's the bonus of a secondary romance as well. And a dark mystery to solve. All in all an enthralling read. Can't wait for the third in the series to release in November -- Whispers in the Reading Room -- about a librarian!!!! Be still my book-loving heart.
Pam BurkePotosi, MOAge: 55-65Gender: Female5 Stars Out Of 5Even more mystery in Chicago's Gilded AgeJuly 7, 2015Pam BurkePotosi, MOAge: 55-65Gender: FemaleQuality: 0Value: 0Meets Expectations: 0Shelley Gray's Deception on Sable Hill continues her Chicago World's Fair Mystery series in grand style. It picks up very shortly after the conclusion of Secrets of Sloane House with Eloisa Carstairs as one of the main characters.
The extravagance of the Gilded Age is once again important in this story, set against the backdrop of the closing days of Chicago's World's Fair. Although there is evidence of some changes happening in society, Eloisa and Sean find themselves caught in the struggle of the times as well as right in the middle of a dangerous crime spree.
Some of the characters from the first book play roles in this story, but Shelley also brings in several new ones as well. Watching Eloisa search for who she wants to become as she tries to overcome major hurts makes for a very intriguing story. A variety of other characters who find themselves at various points along society's changing class continuum keep the story and its mystery moving at a very enjoyable pace.
I highly recommend both books in this series as great reads. I don't know whether there are more books to come in this series, but I would certainly enjoy reading them if there are.
Thanks to BookLook Bloggers for providing a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.