25/series. I’m thinking that Anne Perry never sleeps; she just writes. This is one of her best: tightly-plotted, mysterious until almost the last, full of nice little surprises, and without all of the endless internal emotional dissections that I have skipped in some of the other Charlotte and Thomas Pitt novels. Once a dashing fighter for Italian freedom, the aged Serafina Montserrat seems to fear she is losing her mind and will spill secrets that still have the power to destroy. Lady Vespasia Cumming-Gould, Charlotte Pitt’s aunt, was Serafina’s equal, and their paths crossed across Europe. While Vespasia visits the dying woman, Thomas Pitt struggles with the requirements of his new position, head of Special Branch. There are those who believe he has been promoted beyond his capabilities, and Pitt must prove them wrong as he tried to protect a young Austrian duke. Then Serafina is found dead. My anti-spoiler device has kicked in, so if you wish to know more, read this fine historical novel. Better yet, read all of them! A delightful, detailed 5.
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