The Peacock Throne
Two murders thrust Anthony, the elegant new Earl of Danby, and the impoverished Lydia Garrett together in Regency London. The two victims, Anthony’s father and Lydia’s cousin, had served together many years earlier and been involved in the disappearance of the fabulously bejeweled Peacock Throne. Lydia and Anthony join forces in an effort to catch the killer. They plan to find the fabled treasure hidden many years ago, using it as bait to lure the murderer from hiding. Marcus Harting, an espionage agent who masquerades as a foppish dandy, is sure that the murders were committed by Napoleon’s mysterious agent Le Faucon and that Napoleon himself has plans for the throne. The three join forces, and their quest takes them far from London to the steamy Seychelles and mysterious India, with plenty of adventures along the way.
This book, filled with narrow escapes and exotic locales, reminded me somewhat of an old Errol Flynn movie, and provided an enjoyable and entertaining escape. The romantic tension between Lydia, Anthony, and Marcus enlivens the plot in unexpected ways. I found the writing a trifle uneven at times, and the ease with which the throne was rediscovered and reclaimed a bit unbelievable. Still, how many old adventure movies are totally realistic? A sequel is planned, and the ongoing tensions between Lydia, Anthony, and Marcus promise another lively adventure.