A review by dlrosebyh
A Curious Beginning, by Deanna Raybourn

adventurous mysterious slow-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? It's complicated
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes


1887, London. Orphaned Veronica Speedwell is free to resume her global travels in search of scientific inquiry—and the odd amorous dalliance—after burying her spinster aunt. Veronica is as comfortable hunting butterflies as she is fighting off suitors, and she plans to embark on a once-in-a-lifetime adventure.

But fate has other ideas for Veronica when she foils her own kidnapping with the assistance of an intriguing German aristocrat who gives her refuge in the hands of his friend Stoker, a reclusive and bad-tempered natural historian. But before the baron can tell what he knows about the conspiracy against her, he is assassinated, leaving Veronica and Stoker on the run from an enigmatic assailant as hesitant companions in quest of the wicked truth.

This was given to me by a friend since I was seeking for historical fiction mysteries after reading so many modern ones. As a mystery reader, I believe the storyline might have been thickened. The finale was also quite predictable. By 35% of the way through the book, I knew what the finale would be, which is always a bad sign in mystery books. I'm not sure whether I like or dislike Veronica, but I also don't want to read six more novels only to learn more about her, so I'm not sure how I feel about this book.

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