A Tale of Two Murders

Written by Heather Redmond
Review by Alana White

This engaging cozy mystery—the first in a series—finds 23-year old Charles Dickens employed as a journalist for the Evening Chronicle in London. It is the winter of 1835. On the night his boss and future father-in-law invites him to dinner at his estate, the terrible death of a young neighbor woman draws Charles into a tangled web of lies and deceit. Was the girl’s agonizing death murder, suicide, or a tragic accident?

When Charles learns a similar death occurred exactly one year earlier, his suspicions are aroused, and he feels compelled to investigate. But how? His employer’s 19-year-old daughter, amiable Catherine (“Kate”) Hogarth, provides Dickens entry to the rich houses whose occupants he wishes to interrogate, while also leading him down the delightful path to romance. A sassy cast of secondary characters and an entertaining look into Dickens’s family and Victorian lifestyle carries the story forward. It is an intricate story that, toward the end, he believes could provide the backbone for a novel (A Tale of Two Cities), if he ever decides to write one. Charming.