This is the second book in the Thorndike and Swann mystery series. Even though you should be able to follow everything while not having read book one, I would recommend book one first, since the series develops on each book.
The murder mystery was intriguing to read and try to solve along with Juliette and Daniel. I had a gut feeling of what would happen with the revelation of Daniel’s benefactor but did not 100% guess the entire reveal.
In book one I felt that the focus was more on Juliette and the secret spies, while book two had more of a focus on Daniel and his Bow Street runner would. I liked this because I got to get to know the characters in different ways. It was also fun to see how Juliette tried to grow in her spying skills.
The romance developing between Daniel and Juliette was evident within the struggles of society’s rules for the period.
I am looking forward to reading the third and final book in the series very soon!
I love a variety of books - common choices include murder mysteries, regency period novels, romances, and subtly Christian reads. Erica Vetsch’s Thorndike & Swann series seems to offer a beautiful mix of all of this!
I’ve not read the first novel in the series (The Debutante’s Code) but when NetGalley offered me an ARC of Millstone of Doubt I jumped at the chance to check it out, having previously enjoyed her Serendipity & Secrets series.
Dare I say, this is even better!
Despite having skipped the first novel, I was quickly updated enough to realise Lady Juliette Thorndike had returned home from school for her debut, and been embroiled in the family business: espionage. She’d been kidnapped and rescued, and book 2 starts with her supposedly returning to a reasonable normal London season. A German Duke has marriage in his sights, but her heart belongs to a Bow Street detective (I think he may have rescued her in Book 1?). He, the eponymous Swann, has a bigger mystery in his personal life than any he solves for work: who is he really? Who is the mysterious patron who pays for his studies, lodging and clothing? Could he ever be enough for the beautiful Lady Juliette?
I really loved this book. An easy read. The perfect combo of romance and mystery with a couple of twists. Can’t wait for book 3 to come out later in the year!
Daniel and Juliette team up again to solve a mystery, with her best friend, Agatha's livelihood hanging in the balance after the murder of her father.
A great addition to the series bringing Juliette and Daniel together again, this is an engaging read that works well especially if you have read the first book in the series. I liked that Juliette was a faithful friend to Agatha, supporting her through all of it. It was also great that this book progresses Juliette and Daniel's friendship, and gives hints of a possible outcome.
Engaging and well paced, this was a great sequel that held its own full of intrigue with great tension as they race against the clock. I'm definitely excited to see what's next for Daniel and Juliette in their work and relationship!
I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
I love Regency Era novels. There's just something about the time period that draws me in. Maybe because so many of my favorite classic novels are around the same time period. Meaning they were alive then and writing. This is book two in a series. You definitely need to read this series in order to get the most out of them.
I have to say I have loved everything I have read from this author. She has a great way of writing novels that not only grab you and hold you captive but also make you use your brain to try to figure out the mystery before it's revealed to you. This series has that. The mystery and the suspense.
It's like a Sherlock Holmes novel but in the setting of Jane Austen and the Bronte Sisters. So of course I was hooked!
You're going to love getting to know Daniel and seeing Juliette again as well.
There's a mill explosion. People are dying. Can they figure out who's behind it all and stop it before more die!? I loved this fast-paced novel and can't wait to read the next book in the series!
I have voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received through Netgalley. All views expressed are only my honest opinion. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way. All opinions expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the FTC regulations.
Juliette and Daniel are back!! After what felt like an interminable wait for the next installment of the Thorndike and Swann series, I devoured this book in one sitting because I couldn’t put it down. Explosions, danger, close calls, first kisses, and the unraveling of the story of Daniel’s mysterious parentage…this book does not disappoint. Erica Vetsch knows how to build her storyline at an engaging pace to keep the reader on the edge of their seat. The only problem is that now we have to wait for book three – Children of the Shadows – to see what happens next!
Why I chose this book: I really enjoyed reading the first book in this series and wanted to continue the journey with Thorndike and Swann (and the rest of the crew).
Type of Book: Some classify this as Christian Historical Fiction while others put it in Mystery & Suspense. I'm fine with it in either category. We're traveling back to 1816, London.
Overall: I feel Erica has really found her niche with this genre. I have read others of her books and this series (of which I'll include The Gentleman Spy [Serendipity & Secrets Book 2], which kicks off the Thorndike and Swann series) is by far my favorite. Maybe it's just the genre but in reality, I feel like Erica has found a sweet spot in her writing journey. This book is filled with great hooks, drops of biblical truths without preaching, leading the reader on about a character--just, overall great writing. If anything, I don't like the cover but that's a publisher issue, not a story issue. If you can get passed the cover, I am sure you'll enjoy this read. BUT, do start with The Gentleman Spy and then Debutante's Code, and then this one. Of course you can read the entire Serendipity & Secrets series first--it's a great series as well. But if you want to just jump into this mystery series, you can start like I suggested.
Favorite Quotes/Characters: How's this for an opening line to hook you:
"The problem with concealing a weapon beneath a day dress at a social gathering became all too apparent to Lady Juliette Thorndike the moment she sat beside the Dowager Duchess of Haverly."
I knew from the moment I opened the book that I would be in for a great read.
Bookshelf worthy? Absolutely. 5 stars.
Teenability: Very teen appropriate.
I love to discover new authors, as each and every time it is a surprise, I have not read the first book, yet I did not feel lost, As I am a romance reader first and mystery second, I was happy I missed not much about the romance. A well-crafted mystery with many suspects and a lot of twists and turns. I liked what a great team they are and how they solved the case. I can’t wait to read the next one and see what happens.
I received a complimentary copy. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own
What a treat to visit Lady Juliette Thorndike and Bow Street Runner Daniel Swann again in Millstone of Doubt by Erica Vetsch.
While the attraction between our hero and heroine sparked through the pages at times, it’s the mystery that kept me invested in this story. So many possibilities of who could be behind the explosion that lead Juliette and Daniel in many directions. And all while Daniel is approaching his 25th year which means his patronage will end (there are some answers to that mystery as well in this book).
I love seeing characters from other books make their way into stories, and Vetsch does not disappoint as Marcus (aka the Duke of Haverly) and his mother are part of this story. I look forward to the next installment in this series (especially after the pronouncement at the end of this one).
Disclosure statement: I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book and was not required to write a positive or negative review. All opinions are my own.
Not one of my go to authors but definitely a good one. You will want to add this book to your next read list. Will be lookin gift other books by this author.
Vetsch is an amazing writer. She weaves such a web in every book she writes, and this one is no exception. Wonderful characters. Smooth pacing. Just a great experience.
Thank you to NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for a fair review.
This is the second book in the Thorndike and Swann series and this sleuthing duo of a gentlewoman and a Bow Street runner are back in action. When Daniel Swann investigates a mill explosion, as well as the obvious murder of the mill’s owner, Lady Juliet Thorndike gets drawn into it since she’s friend’s with the owner’s daughter. Juliet is told not to involve herself and she’s continuing to be trained for spying, but she can’t stay out of this one. We also have Daniel’s story continue with his mysterious benefactor and what he’s going to do next.
I’ve loved every Erica Vetsch book I’ve read and this is no exception. I always enjoy a story where there’s spies involved, as long as it’s done well, which it is here. But more importantly, I love these characters who made me laugh sometimes and a good mystery that keeps you guessing. I can’t wait until book three comes out in 2023!
I enjoyed this Regency mystery. Juliette was a brilliant character. The opening scene was hilarious. She isn't concerned with what others expect of her. "This was her year of freedom, of enjoying herself and not worrying about flirting with men or finding a husband. And at the moment, her only concern was getting a gun out of her skirts" (location 91). She's a lively, vibrant, intelligent woman.
Daniel is a Bow Street runner with his own personal mystery that is coming to a head. For years he's been under a secret patronage that is expiring on his 25th birthday. It was fascinating seeing how that affected him and watching what played out. There were some fantastic twists that were quite surprising. He is fortunate to have a faithful co-worker who helps him shift his perspective when it's needed.
This is book two in the series. It was easy to understand as a standalone but made me want to go back and read book one. Thank you to Netgalley and Kregel Publications for providing me with a free e-copy of this book. All opinions are my own.
The second book in the Thorndike and Swann series picked up where the first left off. Both Daniel and Juliet are such enjoyable characters and their interactions are always entertaining! Like the first, there was a mystery involved in Millstone of Doubt but also developments in their personal lives. I’m very much looking forward to the next book in the series after finishing this one!
Exciting read I finished in a day. I jumped into the series without having read the previous book. While I could tell I had missed important things, I was able to follow along well enough. However, I believe reading the entire series in order is paramount for best enjoyment. There are definitely things left unanswered upon completion of this book, but the millstone mystery IS solved.
I enjoyed some of the unusual words, having to reference both the Kindle eDictionary and my 1828 Noah Webster dictionary app when the word was too old for Kindle dictionary 😉
e.g. rodomont = a vain boaster
Lady Juliette (19) & Daniel Swann (24) work well together as she learns spy craft and he hones his detective skills. Both are very likable characters.
Information on millworks was also interesting.
I hope we see more of the young Owen, aspiring to also become a Bow Street Detective, and the genius scientist, Rhynwick who is quite fascinating.
"I often feel like a hen with a duckling, constantly trying to keep her out of the deep end of the pool." -Uncle Bertie re: Lady Juliette
Overall, I was entertained
& give it 4☆
Part of a Series
Regency Era, London, 1816
Pet peeve: 3 names begin with same letter -Alonzo, Agatha, Abigail (I really wish authors would not do this)
Several small typos, but not enough to detract from the story & often no obvious break when the POV changes (at least on the Kindle eVersion).
Erica Vetsch is a talented writer and I look forward to reading more of her works. 📝
I received an eVersion of this book from NetGalley and the publisher for my opinion with no expectation or compensation.
All opinions are mine alone.
Book 71 GoodReads Challenge 2022
(Reviews are or will be posted to my IG, my blog: BlueJeansAndTeacups.blogspot.com, Amzn, GoodReads, B&N, Kobo, and possibly Google Books if available).
Lady Juliette Thorndike and Bow Street Runner Daniel Swann are on the case in Regency London once again. And this one comes with its fair share of danger.
When Daniel Swann is on site during the Hammersmith Mill explosion, he rushes to try to help the survivors, then is assigned to find out who or what caused the explosion. Montgomery, the flour mill’s owner, is discovered dead in his office, but from a gunshot wound and not the explosion. Lady Juliette’s dear friend Agatha Montgomery is distraught over her father’s death…and the fact he was murdered is making things even harder for her.
As Lady Juliette uses her position in society to gain access to people and information that may help, Daniel is using his investigative skills to solve the killing. But there are plenty of people with motives and the killer has no intention of being caught.
But there are other threads running through this intriguing story. Although Daniel comes from very humble beginnings, a secret wealthy and influential patron has paid for his education, his housing, his clothing. But as Daniel approaches his twenty-fifth birthday, all that is about to come to an end, and perhaps even his Bow Street job. Daniel believes he will be able to make his own way in the world, even without the patronage, but he is curious about his benefactor’s identity.
Daniel and Lady Juliette are also part of a clandestine spy organization, and Lady Juliette’s instructor has ordered her to stay out of the investigation. But how can she when circumstances keep dropping her into trying to help her friend Agatha?
Ms. Vetsch has written an intriguing story with multi-dimensional primary characters. They have problems in their lives that they are working on, even as they take on solving the mysteries confronting them. Even secondary characters are well fleshed out. There’s mystery, history and romance combined in Millstone of Doubt. The author’s style is smooth and easy to read. I look forward to the next book in this Regency series.
The mysteries solved in Millstone of Doubt were intriguing. As was the training of spies, especially one who is a debutante. Get swept away to Regency London, solving murder, stopping mob attacks, and attending grand balls. Follow Juliette and Daniel as they sort through suspects and develop their spycraft in service of King and country. This is the second book in a series. I didn't read the first book before reading Millstone of Doubt. I do feel I missed out by not reading them in order, but I was still able to read the story and enjoy it. Millstone of Doubt was good as it is, but I missed out on some previous character development. I really enjoyed the writing of Erica Vetsch. One theme of the book was accepting the place where God has put you. I often wonder why I have so much/so little, when others do or do not. One line in particular caught my attention that pointed to this theme so well, "Your position was given you by God. Use it." What a wonderful challenge for me to keep in mind. Whether in plenty or want, God has a purpose that will glorify His name. I recommend this book, and I will be going back to read the first book of the series before book 3 is released! I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
This sequel picks up a little after the first one, as Daniel discovers Juliette's identity as a spy and they've cracked the traitorous case, preventing the King's list from being stolen. Now, Daniel's work as a Bow Street Runner will intersect with Juliette's life, as her friend's father is killed - and she wants to know who's behind it. Continuing her training with Uncle Bertie (I hope there's a book about him coming!) she's caught in the tension of orders not to investigate and her curiosity about the mill attacks.
Meanwhile, her parents also go back and forth with work for the Crown, and she struggles with their lack of presence in her life. The ending is a bit of a cliffhangar as we wait for book number three. But you will enjoy the progressive unfolding of Daniel's story and his mysterious benefactor, as well as what future lies in store between the two of them.
*A big thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for the ARC and for the opportunity to post an honest review.
Millstone of Doubt was a lovely second instalment in the Thorndyke and Swann Mysteries series. I did like this book; however, I don’t think I enjoyed it as much as the last one. Not quite sure what it was, it might have been the conclusion which felt a little bit contrived in regard to who solved it.
I did like seeing more of Daniel Swann and learning more about his motives and his past. The historical setting was also interesting: this covered the conflict between Mill owners and Luddite/anarchists. Some were against machines replacing people during the Industrial Revolution, and some seem to have been revolutionaries.
The only historical details which felt a bit “off” was some of the language, and a smattering of Americanisms in the character’s speech. I’m not sure about the characters referring to themselves as “secret agents” either. I thought that was a modern thing, and its not a term used by people in a certain business for one another. I don’t know for sure though.
I’d recommend for anyone who liked the last book, or Regency Mysteries of fans of Michelle Griep’s Bow Street Runners stories.
Thanks to Kregel for approving me for this title on Netgalley. I was sent a PDF version to review, which did not influence my opinions. These are entirely my own.
Book 2 of the Thorndike and Swann series. This book seems to focus a little more on Daniel Swann’s side of things where as the first was more Juliette Thorndike’s side. Which was really fun and I enjoyed it a lot. It is dual point of view. Once again Erica Vetsch’s writing is amazing! I just love her work! This story was really well done. I didn’t even start to suspect the killer until about halfway through which is always good. I enjoyed this book more than the first in the series. Overall a fantastic mystery regency read. There may or may not be a touch of romance in this one too! 😊Very clean, and I definitely recommend!! Can’t wait for the 3rd one!!
Thank you to Erica and Kregel publishing for a free copy!
I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the author as well as netgalley. All views expressed are only my honest opinion.
The author writes in such a compelling way that it is hard to stop turning the pages! I think I read this in two days! The only downfall is that no chores got completed. Storyline was great and as always, she kept me looking for more! When does #3 come out?