REVIEW: Naughty Victorian Days – Bea St. Lea

Naughty Victorian Days - Bea St. Lea

Genre: Mystery, Romance, Humor

LGBTQ+ Category: Gay

Reviewer: S.C., Paranormal Romance Guild

Get It On Amazon

About The Book

What could make a woman weep forever?

The inhabitants of the teeming city of Landan are readying for King Victor’s jubilee. But, away from the bunting and souvenir tea-towels, a conspiracy is brewing. People are killing themselves for no apparent reason. A man has gone missing. And Vividia Whistful, a rich heiress, is afflicted by a strange magic that has left her crying silently and ceaselessly.

Daniel Gleason and William Bumard, two down-on-their-luck clerks, are drawn into this mess. Joined by streetwise prostitute Sally, and an orphaned servant known as The Boy, the search pulls them into the hidden underbelly of the capital. They will discover dangerous mysteries, and they will all be forced to reveal secrets of their own.

This mystery adventure features graphic sex, queer romance, a touch of fantasy and intrigue.

The Review

What an absolutely curious delight! Naughty Victorian Days by Bea St. Lea is a compelling, confusing, alternative historical romance-mystery. This macabre masterpiece will leave you scratching your head and thoroughly absorbed.

Enter a Victorian (as in King Victor and Queen Alberta) Landan (not London), a land rife with mysteries and manners. As the jubilee of the king approaches, our two dear heroes, Nop and William, accompanied by sidekicks Sal and The Boy must solve a kidnapping or two, settle an estate, solve a mysterious rash of suicides, and take on St. Lea’s incarnation of Jack the Ripper, Todger Slashman. Overwhelmed? Yes, you will be, but believe me, it’s worth it.

If Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Edgar Allen Poe, and Oscar Wilde had gotten drunk at a party and decided to write a novel together, this would have been their masterpiece.

However, the brilliance of this work has some flaws. The world-building is beautifully woven and complex, but comes along in such a piecemeal fashion that you find yourself plagued by questions. The answers are a long time in coming.

Thank goodness the story itself shines with such witty dialogue and prose. You’ll be entertained as you wait and muddle through. Once things really get going (about seventy pages in), you’ll fly through the rest and leave hungry for a return visit to Landan.

Five stars.

The Reviewer

S.C. Principale is a voracious writer, reader, baker, and teacher. When she’s not writing paranormal romance and erotica, she loves reading the works of others. She’s a firm believer that great writers must be great readers, too. Reviewing allows her to follow her passion of  uplifting and learning from other authors.  She lives in Pennsylvania with her amazing husband, their two brilliant and stubborn kids, and their menagerie of six pets.

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