Death Below Stairs has at its center a cook from Victorian Era named Kat Holloway. Recently hired as part of Lord Rankin’s household in London, she finds herself immersed in a murder mystery. Set to solve the killing of her kitchen maid, Kat turns to the resourceful Daniel McAdam, who is more than meets the eyes. With the help of a mathematical genius and Lord Rankin’s eccentric sister-in-law, Kat and Daniel will soon found out that the household murder was the tip of the iceberg of a much bigger plot against Queen Victoria.
Death Below Stairs – My Opinion
When I requested this book, I only skimmed the book’s summery. I read “murder,” “Victorian Era,” and “young cook Kat [woman]” and that was enough for me to get hooked. You can imagine the surprise I had when I realized that there is more to the murder.
First, I fell in love with Kat’s voice as a character. Her background story was unexpected. She is an ordinary woman with an unfortunate past. The overall cast of characters was intriguing. We have the eccentric woman who was born in the wrong era, the nice and work-absorbed mathematician, the rebel teenager, and the man with all the answers, Daniel. Danial was a total mystery however, I have a slight idea about what he might be. No spoilers.
Kat is smart, independent, and hard working. She has her mind set with a realistic view of the world even though her heart fancies a guy. The only person she relies on is herself. As a a woman in that time period, Kat works assiduously to be acknowledged by the pompous society. Although, she is not afraid to challenge the authority when something is wrong. As a mother figure character, Kat feels responsible for the kitchen girl’s death, thus, her courage and determination put the cook in dangerous situations.
Despite the lovely characters, the pacing of the story had a bit of an issue. The narrative was executed strangely. We are halfway through the book and merely anything happens. There is too much description of food making which feels like page fillers than part of the actual story. I know what you are going to say next, “But, wait! Isn’t she a cook?” And my follow up answer will be something like, “Yes. Yes, she is. Although, we have a murder which is tied to a plot that might threaten the queen’s life and only 50 percent of the book is dedicated to that.”
The major scenes are rushed and unpolished. It first starts as a a slow burner book then the narrative accelerates and you try to keep up. Some unfolding of events seemed improbable due to lack of development space. The murder is brushed to the side as a subplot, despite the book being called Death Below Stairs , putting the book in a precarious position. I wished the murder had a bigger role in the plot.
The ending, though… Let’s just say that it was explosive and it saved the book for me. Wink.
Overall, I gave this book a 3/5 stars on Goodreads. Death Below Stairs was somewhat my cup of tea and I am tempted to read the next book in the series. Also, I would like to thank you Penguin Random House for the ebook arc in exchange for an honest review.
This is my sole opinion. ^_^
Until next time, feel free to check my latest posts:
Hello-Hello! Recently I got my hands on some awesome books. Some of them were free – somebody was literary throwing them to the garbage – and some of them I got for a cheap price in second-hand stores. I know that in some parts of the world, to buy from second-hand stores is seen with judgmental eyes in the eyes of society… like an embarrassment because you cannot afford to buy unused things, brand new. It is more about moral pride than the quality of the things and some people are even ashamed to admit that they entered and bought something from a second-hand store. I am speaking from my experience and I am not pointing fingers because it is impossible for me to know everything in this universe. 🙂American view changed that opinion I had through books mostly. I found brand new books in second-hand stores. Barely opened or scratched books like the ones you are going to see below. It is crazy how many valuable things people are donating for other people to buy for a couple dollars.Like that saying: One man’s trash is another man’s treasure.I mean… It is a saying for a reason, right?Don’t be afraid about germs. Usually the stores disinfect them. Or in extreme cases you can disinfect them yourselves. Plus, a sterile life is impossible – except for fetuses in their mother’s wombs and even there I might be wrong. Your are covered in germs yourself. Without your microbiota you will not be able to survive on this Earth. If you cannot believe me, you can listen to this guy from PBS who has a Ph.D. (doctorate) –> It’s Okay To Be Smart – You Are Mainly Microbe… Meet Your Microbiome!You can see how much of a geek I am when I am turning a Book Haul into an educational post. Nevertheless, this shouldn’t stop you to “stay curious” like Dr. Joe Hanson says.Now it’s time for the BOOKS!!!!Books I got for free:Anne of Avonlea — which I donated to a Free Library program in my townBooks I got from a second-hand store:If you are interested in reading any of these books, I included the link for their respective Goodreads page. You just have to click on the name of the book from the lists above to learn more about that said… book. Gosh, that was a mouthful. Yes, I repeat everything I write in my head to make sure it sounds right.Anyway… Let me know if you read or want to read any of the books I hauled today. I want to read your thought, feelings, and opinions in the comment section – even if you read this post 20 years in the future.Oh! And did I spark your curiosity about biology and people?
Hello-Hello, readers all over the world! Today, I decided to do a book tag. I know I’ve been absent from my blog lately; thus, I decided to do a tag and keep you all entertained.Savannah from The Book Prophet nominated whoever wants to do the tag all back in January. As you can see (read), I decided to do it since I live in the Northern Temperate Zone – aka four seasons.
Side note: Did you know that the North geographic pole is actually the South pole of Earth’s magnetic field and the South geographic pole is the North magnetic pole? CRAAA-ZYYY!
Now, back to the post!The creator of this tag is Jordyn from J. Bookish.
Don’t be a grumpy troll and go visit these hard-working bloggers. No offense trolls but you are kind of grumpy imaginary beings.
Rules:1. Thank the creator (so she can see all of your answers!) and the person who tagged you.2. Begin with the month in which you have been tagged and move forward from there!3. State the best gift you’ve ever been given after you answer the question for your birthday month.4. Tag whomever you’d like when you’re finished.. or else you’ll be “it” forever.5. Have fun, of course!January begins a new year. Name a resolution you made this year and if you’ve kept it or not!
Well, Well, Well… I’ve made a long list in the last hour of 2016. I can say that I kept some of them and some of them – sadly – I did not. By the end of the year, I want to put all my strength in keeping them. I just realized that I am very vague with “them.” Let’s just say that one of my resolutions is to trade some of my fat mass for more muscle mass.
Oh! January is my birth month. I do not remember every single thing I received over the course of my life so far but I can definitely say my mom’s home made birthday cakes and my 18th birthday piece of jewelry made of precious metal and stone. (In Romania, the 18th birthday is like a rite of passage into adulthood because you become an adult legally able to do and buy anything you want. Slow down you envious American teenagers :].)
February is the month for relationships. Name your favorite book relationship: romantic, platonic, or familial, your choice!
Laia and Elias from An Ember in the Ashes. I will stop commenting on their relationship any further cause… SPOILERS. 😀
Let’s just say it’s realistic – as realistic it can be in a fiction fantasy setting :).March is the month for luck and new beginnings. Name a book or series that you would like to re-experience as if you’d never read it.I know what you are thinking: “HARRY POTTER!”WRONGIt is Tara Duncan series before Twilight and way before Harry Potter. This was actually my very first book I picked up from a shelf in a hypermarket called Auchan, Romania. I read the first’s book synopsis on the back and on the inside of the cover, loved the graphics, liked the story, and said “I want it!” My parents looked skeptical at me because I was not much of a fan of reading but they bought it for me. At that time the only thing I liked to read was the W.i.t.c.h. comic books. As expected, I read only 75 or 74 pages of the Tara Duncan and the Spellbinders then put the book down cause I could not get into it. Slow starters for an energetic kid like me… unattractive. After that, I got into Twilight and it encouraged me to give Tara Duncan another shot. And it was an amazing adventure. Unfortunately in U.S. only the first two volumes are translated while in Romania they stopped translating after book eight the last time I checked. And… There are at least 13 books total. My only solution to finish the series is to learn French – again. Or I could boycott the U.S. or Romanian (Ro) publishing houses.April is a spectacularly ordinary month. Name a book that was so over-hyped that it just could not live up to your expectations.
Tough one… Can I say every single classic book I heard of because “It is a CLASSIC.” Although, from what I remember, in Romania, post Twilight era – book-wise at least – there was a huge hype around Melissa Marr’s Wicked Lovely. People were talking left and right including my eight grade classmates. The Ro cover looked pretty for me at that time. The story sounded interesting… I said, “Why not?” As you could see on my Goodreads, Melissa Marr’s story or her writing style or both were not for me. For a long period of time, I tried to convince myself otherwise. Paradoxically, I never picked up the rest of the series either. And that says a lot. (Now that I see the Ro cover again… It does not represent the book at all. It is too cheerful and the title… Fascination – English translation. Really?)May is the month when the flowers start to bloom. Name a book that was a pleasant surprise to you.
I want to come with a new book than the ones I have in previous posts, e.g. Easter Book Tag, for the sake of diversity… think… Think… THINK… Alright, a recent one!
Illuminae, the audiobook. I will let the audiobook “talk” for itself. It. Was. Epic.June is the time to take a break. Name a book or genre that you like to read when you just need to check out.
Hmmm… I usually gravitate toward a few genres… Most likely Romance and/or Fantasy with a splash of humor.
July is the time to celebrate your independence! Name a book that made you see fireworks. (Figuratively. Please don’t light books on fire.)
Ha-Ha-Ha! My mom did that with the books she owned because – according to her – were ruined by rodents to a point of no return. Unfortunately, after I got my Bachelor degree in science, I realized she was probably right. Rodents do carry diseases.
Enough with childhood horror book stories. Please do not cry and dislike my mother. :))
In what sense, I need more than that. In a good way, bad way, actual fire in the book, action, space, Earth, future, history… What? Words, what?
Since it’s about independence… I will say Return Once More.August is the hottest month of the year. Pick an up-and-coming author that you think will be the next hottest thing.
Oh, gee! These are getting harder and harder.
Popular 2017 Debut Books
YA Debuts 2017
And the list may continue…
From what I heard… it is either: Stephanie Garber or Angie Thomas or Jeff Giles (The Edge of Everything-Review).September is time for students to go back to school! Pick a book you read for school that you actually enjoyed.
I have two books for this one: The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks and Frozen.October is time to celebrate Halloween! Pick one character that you would love to dress up as for Halloween.
A popular answer would be Hermione Granger from the Harry Potter series. Last Halloween, I dressed up – sort of – as Katniss Everdeen from The Hunger Games.
Shout out to my friend Emily who helped me out with the “costume.”
I don’t really know… I have a black vampire Halloween dress that I have yet to wear and I was thinking about goddesses.
Either Valoria or Cleiona from Spirits and Thieves series or Nyx from Greek mythology depicted in The Heroes of Olympus and House of Night series.
November is the month when we’re reminded of how much we have to be thankful for. Choose one book you’re grateful for having read and give a shout-out to the person who recommended it!
Shout out to Alma or Alexandra (like all Romanian she also has lots of aliases like myself – inside joke :]) my desk-mate from seventh and eighth grades. I remember her talking – a lot – about Brida by Paulo Coelho and The Legends of Olympus (mot-a-mot translation of the title) by Alexandru Mitru. She actually recommended reading the Legends of Olympus. I borrowed from her both Brida and The Legends of Olympus (I am not 100% sure about this one my memory is quite fuzzy) and I thank her for that. And now it’s time for the truth since then I did not want to crush her high hopes and excitement for these two books.
Brida was good but strange for my seventh/eighth grader self. I liked it.
The Legends of Olympus… hate is such a strong word. Ha-Ha-Ha! I absolutely disliked it. I found it gross, vulgar, and too much incest. It discouraged me to read the second volume regarding the heroes.
Now, I am in love with Greek mythology. I have her to thank since she was the one who introduced me to it.
Oh! I just remember… She also used to talk a lot about The Last Apprentice / Wardstone Chronicles. I love that series. Because of her I start reading it. Thank you for that too!December is a time when friends and families come together and celebrate. Name one book you would give as a gift.
Another hard one… I really do not know. I usually do a researchabout a person’s taste in books before buying it as a present. I like laughter and adventure/action… and the first author name popping in my head is: Rick Riordan.
Percy Jackson and the Lightning ThiefTag timeYou are not obligated to do this tag if you do not want to.I tag the following bloggers:Joan from Books & Fitness & LifestyleGiulia from Books CrumblesAbigail from What Makes a Good BookAnd if you, reader of this post, want to do this tag… considered yourself tagged.Plus, do not forget to tell me if you decided to do it. Why? Cause I would like to hear your answers. 🙂