A Vicious Machination

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Book 12 of Beatrice Hyde-Clare Mysteries
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Pub Date Jun 28 2024 | Archive Date Jun 19 2024

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As eager as Beatrice, Duchess of Kesgrave, is to meet her husband’s newly discovered illegitimate half sister, she does not want it to happen like this: in the keeper's house at Newgate.

Yes, that Newgate, the abject prison filled with squalor and misery to which Verity Lark has been consigned for murder. Found standing over the slain corpse of an old tormentor with a still-warm pistol in her hand, she is obviously guilty.

It is an open-and-shut case with little for an unduly curious duchess to investigate.

Except it all seems a little too simple and straightforward. The Runner, for example, who apprehended Miss Lark at the scene of the crime—it’s awfully convenient that he just happened to be in the neighborhood at the very moment the gun discharged. Something else has to be at work here, such as a sinister figure lurking in the shadows to direct the action. Convinced of Miss Lark’s innocence, Bea can conceive of no other explanation.

Or is the prisoner really just the victim of a horrible stroke of bad luck?

The question plagues Bea as she struggles to figure out the answer to her most confounding riddle yet, for the stakes are higher than ever and distressingly personal.

As eager as Beatrice, Duchess of Kesgrave, is to meet her husband’s newly discovered illegitimate half sister, she does not want it to happen like this: in the keeper's house at Newgate.

Yes, that...

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ISBN 9781942218920
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Featured Reviews

I am a HUGE Lynn Messina fan. She is great.

I have been reading this series since the beginning and have thoroughly enjoyed it.

I’m highly recommend starting with the first book and working your way to this book.

Very well written.

I just reviewed A Vicious Machination by Lynn Messina. #AViciousMachination #NetGalley

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How does Lynn Messina do it? Lynn Messina writes twisty murder mysteries that keep you guessing until the very end and still manages to pepper every scene with humor. I imagine her cracking up as she writes, even though some of the subject matter in these books is heavy.

In A Vicious Machination, the Beatrice Hyde-Clare series continues to overlap with the Verity Lark series. Verity Lark, the reporter who has excoriated Beatrice in the past in a gossip column who also happens to be the half-sister of Bea's husband, is in jail for murder. Bea feels she and her husband, Damen, Duke of Kesgrave, must investigate and prove her innocent. Though Damien and Verity have met in a past book, Bea meets Verity for the first time in Newgate Prison.

The murder victim ran the orphanage where Verity grew up. She had been selling children into slavery and blackmailing members of the orphanage's board of directors as well. Verity exposed the scheme and ruined everyone involved, so suspects for the murder are numerous. Over the course of two days, Bea and Damien interview suspects and hone in on the guilty party. The finale is an action scene where Damien and Verity's beau (is that the right term?) play major roles.

In addition to the fascinating investigation, we see Bea continue to deal with discomfort over her new roles as Duchess and impending motherhood,. These scenes are both sweet and funny with secondary characters like Bea's Aunt Vera and Lady Abercrombie appearing briefly. There's a hint that action will move to the Kesgrave country estate soon.

As always, the pace is fast. Though this installment is under 300 pages, it is packed!

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A new mystery for Bea to solve but this time it is Verity Lark that has been accused of murder!

After the revelation that Verity is Kesgrave's half sister, Bea is curios to get to know her but unfortunately it is under dire circumstances.

As with all the books by Lynn Messina I loved the mystery component of the story and the characters are perfectly designed.

The dowager could have played a bigger role but I was happy to get more of Lord Colson.

As usual, I cannot wait for the next book in this series and in Verity Lark's.

Thanks to the author and the publisher for providing me with an ARC.

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I started to read Beatrice Hyde-Clare mysteries Series a few weeks ago and I was hooked. I loved the MCs so much, Bea, the shy spinster, who finds her backbone when investigating murders and Damian, the arrogant Duke, who finally finds his match.
I read all the books back to back and couldn’t stop till the latest book of theirs amazing series: A Vicious Machination.
Lynn Messina writes twisty murder mysteries with lots and lots of red herrings that keep you guessing until the very end. While tackling serious subjects, the author always manages to slip in plenty of wit and humor along with side stories to make the darker topic more tolerable.
The writing is easy to read and get into. Bea and her Duke are engaging and fun characters. I love the way Bea and Kesgrave's relationship has evolved through the series and it's so fun to read their interactions and their witty banter. The secondary characters add to the fabric of the story ( aunt Vera, lady Abercrombie, Fiona…)

The plot is super interesting. The world of BHC collide with the world of Verity Lark, another wonderful series by Lynn Messina. Verity Lark is accused of murder and it’s up to her outrageousness to save her with her amazing investigative skills !!!

I absolutely love this series but now my Beatrice binge is at an end and I can’t wait to read her next adventure.
I highly recommend Beatrice Hyde-Clare mysteries series to readers who enjoy a cozy, charming, light-hearted and entertaining murder investigation.

I voluntarily read and reviewed an Advanced Reader Copy (ARC) of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

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Another great mystery in the ongoing series. I would think by this point, the plot and characters would feel tired when reading it, but no! I continue to enjoy the exploits and the mystery surrounding the Duke and his "Lady Runner". This was another fun read and I will continue to read every one that's published!

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