Welcome to my turn on the blog tour for Blackmail, Sex and Lies by Kathryn McMaster…
Blackmail, Sex and Lies is a story of deception, scandal, and fractured traditional Victorian social values. It is the tale of a naïve, young woman caught up in a whirlwind romance with a much older man. However, both have personality flaws that result in poor choices, and ultimately lead to a tragic end.
For 160 years, people have believed Madeleine Smith to have been guilty of murder. But was she? Could she have been innocent after all?
This Victorian murder mystery, based on a true story, takes place in Glasgow, Scotland, 1857. It explores the disastrous romance between the vivacious socialite, Madeleine Hamilton Smith, and her working class lover, Pierre Emile L’Angelier.
After a two-year torrid, and forbidden relationship with L’Angelier, that takes place against her parents’ wishes, the situation changes dramatically when William Minnoch enters the scene. This new man in Madeleine’s life is handsome, rich, and of her social class. He is also a man of whom her family approve.
Sadly, insane jealous rages, and threats of blackmail, are suddenly silenced by an untimely death.
A big thank you to Rachel Gilbey and the author, Kathryn McMaster for my review copy of the book, that I chose to review honestly and for inviting me to participate on the blog tour.
This is a completely different type of book that I would normally read and I love that since becoming a blogger I have been introduced to books that I maybe wouldn’t have picked out myself.
I hadn’t actually read anything or was even aware of this very famous Scottish crime or had heard of any of the people involved.
Kathryn McMaster has clearly done her homework though and the book is incredibly well researched with actual letters that were sent between Madeleine and Emile with the story being based around them. I really enjoyed this and found myself completely immersed in the world of both the characters.
Emile is quite a hard person to like, he’s obsessed with wanting to marry above his station and it begins to take over his life. Madeleine is incredibly young and naive and I felt sorry for her in a way although I did sometimes just want to shake her!
I think this book does a brilliant job in showing us just how things have completely changed in the word today, people marry for love and although the social classes are still very apparent, we aren’t as obsessed with them as they clearly were during Emile and Madeleine’s ill fated time together.
A very intriguing book that has stayed with me long after I had finished it.
This book can be purchased from:
About Kathryn McMaster
Kathryn McMaster is a writer, entrepreneur, wife, mother, and champion of good indie authors. She co-owns the book promotion company One Stop Fiction (www.onestopfiction.com), where readers can sign up to receive news of free and discounted 4 and 5 star reviewed books. She is also a bestselling author of historical murder mysteries set in the Victorian and Edwardian eras. Her debut novel, “Who Killed Little Johnny Gill?” was well received. All her novels are based on true stories, and she melds fact with fiction, writing in the creative nonfiction style. She lives on her 30 acre farm in the beautiful Casentino Valley, Italy for 6 months of the year, and during the other half of the year, on the small island of Gozo, Malta.
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