2/series. Another fun-filled Victorian-era caper starring the abbess of Lotus House, one of London's more upscale brothels. Read these in order if you can, because they do build upon the previous. And, to my mind, they're well worth the reading. India is feisty, sometimes world-weary (as any madam is entitled to be), but indominable. French is handsome, urbane, well-connected (he's the Prime Minister's go-to man when it comes to trouble) risk-taking, loyal...and he may actually like India. Once again, our feisty madam is roped into espionage as Queen Victoria's life is threatened by Scottish separatists (some things never change). Click below for more no-spoiler review...
Unexpectedly, the Queen decides to spend Christmas at Balmoral, the medieval pile built at the orders of her late, always-lamented Albert, the Prince Consort. French dragoons India into become the lady's maid to an aging countess with an addiction to snuff. The nearsighted woman often mistakes unsuitable substances (black pepper, and that at lunch with the Queen) for snuff, with predictably comic results. Juggling the requirements of round-the-clock attendance on her stroppy mistress, the demands of French, avoiding the advances of the ever-lecherous Prince of Wales, and her need for a few hours of sleep keeps India on her toes. It's a 4.
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