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Intrepid reporter Charlotte "Charlie" James arrives in Paris in 1938 eager to make a fresh start, but little does she know the trouble that awaits her...
Charlie James is chasing her first big scoop as correspondent for British-based newspaper The Times, and she needs to prove to her boss that she can do this job as well, if not better, than her male counterparts. The best way to forge the necessary contacts quickly is to make well-connected British expats, Lord and Lady Ashworth, her business. Lady Eleanor knows everyone in Parisian high society, and at her sumptuously extravagant annual party, a Circus Ball, Charlie will meet them all.
On the summer solstice eve, the Circus Ball is in full swing, with the Parisian elites entranced by burlesque dancers, tightrope walkers, a jazz band . . . and a horrific murder. A wealthy but unscrupulous investor is dead, and the list of suspects is a veritable who's who of le haut monde. As Charlie tries to determine who the murderer is, she finds herself drawn into the magical parties, couture houses, and bohemian wine bars of the City of Lights. Soon secrets start to unravel, including some Charlie has a personal stake in keeping hidden.
About the Author
Kirsty Manning is the bestselling author of The French Gift, The Lost Jewels and The Song of the Jade Lily. Her historical novels have been published in Australia and New Zealand, North America, UK, South Africa and translated into several languages including German, Dutch, Hebrew, Russian and Serbian. Kirsty grew up in northern New South Wales, Australia and has degrees in literature and communications. A country girl with wanderlust, her travels and studies have taken her around the globe. Kirsty lives in Melbourne. Together with her husband she is a partner in the award-winning Melbourne wine bar Bellota and the Prince Wine Store in Melbourne and Sydney.
Named a best book of the week by the New York Post
“A fizzy, fast-paced caper full of glitz, glamour and intrigue. . . . Manning highlights the opulence and decadence of interwar Paris in this engaging and delightful mystery. The City of Light comes alive through her descriptions of haute couture fashion and Parisian cuisine. Charlie is an engaging sleuth, too: She’s intelligent, empathetic and a skilled reporter. She’s keenly aware that the 1930s news industry is a male-dominated profession, but she refuses to let that mindset hold her back. Her relationship with Inspecteur Bernard, the French detective heading up the murder investigation, is also a highlight. Journalists and police officers often find themselves at odds in mysteries, especially cozy mysteries, but Charlie and Bernard quickly strike up a cordial working relationship that benefits them both.
“Australian author Kirsty Manning (The Lost Jewels) launches a new cozy mystery series with this stellar entry, set in the stunning summertime beauty of 1938 Paris. . . . Readers join Charlie in the glamorous, decadent world of the novel and its Chanel gowns, Hermѐs handbags, Brut champagne, buttery croissants, and the fabulous sights and sounds of beautiful Paris. The story—with intriguing characters, a fast plot that twists and turns, a growing list of dead bodies, and a very surprising final reveal—is certain to leave readers wonderfully satisfied and eagerly awaiting the next installment in this charming series.”
“Enjoyable. . . . [Manning’s] talents for scene-setting and unpredictable plotting freshen up tired mystery tropes. Colorful characters and a brisk pace make this a pleasure.”
“This atmospheric historical mystery by the author of The Jade Lily reveals a Paris on the verge of war, in all its captivating beauty and excess. Suggest for fans of Cara Black or Betty Webb’s Lost in Paris.”