cover image An Old Betrayal: A Charles Lenox Mystery

An Old Betrayal: A Charles Lenox Mystery

Charles Finch. Minotaur, $25.99 (320p) ISBN 978-1-250-01161-9

A simple favor for a friend turns into much more for Charles Lenox in Finch’s engaging seventh Victorian mystery featuring the former private investigator turned MP (after 2012’s A Death in the Small Hours). While Lenox’s political star is on the rise and he’s happily married, he welcomes the chance to resume sleuthing when his protégé, Lord John Dallington, is unable, due to a cold, to attend a rendezvous with a prospective client who has sent a cryptic note inviting Dallington to meet at a London restaurant. Lenox fills in, but, uncharacteristically, botches the job, failing to recognize in time the client-to-be, a woman later identified as being connected with Buckingham Palace, who flees the restaurant. The mystery gets progressively more complex, with an impersonation and murder, though it’s less clever than Finch’s best. Still, the combination of a simpatico lead and old-fashioned detection will appeal to golden age fans. Agents: Kari Stuart and Jennifer Joel, ICM. (Nov.)