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Carol K. Carr Books In Order

Publication Order of Madam of Espionage Mystery Books

India Black (2011) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
India Black and the Widow of Windsor (2011) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
India Black and the Rajah's Ruby (2012) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
India Black and the Shadows of Anarchy (2013) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
India Black in the City of Light (2013) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
India Black and the Gentleman Thief (2014) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Carol K. Carr is American author of mystery, thrillers and historical fiction books. Before her writing career, Carr served as a lawyer and corporate executive. Her first novel India Black, the first book in Madam of Espionage Mystery, was published in 2011.

India Black

After an important person in the Disraeli government dies in some mysterious situation at the Lotus House, India Black has to act as soon as possible to avoid any kind of disruption to her reputation and business. She hires the dubious talents of a street urchin Vincent and hatches a plan to get rid of the body without getting noticed; unfortunately, she is discovered by a government spy French. She is then blackmailed with a threat that she would lose the Lotus House which draws her into his world of intelligence to work for the British government.

India Black is a brilliantly written and entertaining first book featuring a street-wise, no-nonsense heroine. The book is narrated in the first person perspective; this is great because, through this narration, one gets to know more about the main character, India. During the night when she decides to dispose of the body of the government official, a mysterious man appears out of nowhere and takes over the operation. He demands that the India will only need to produce the briefcase that the government official had brought along.

The only problem now is that the briefcase is missing as well as the prostitute who was attending to the man when he expired. The mysterious man turns out to be a French (his real name not nationality), a top government official who then arranges a meeting between India and Benjamin Disraeli. It happens that the briefcase holds vital information that the Russians would be keen enough to get their hands on, on the other hand, India is blackmailed into helping the British operatives to retrieve the briefcase and its vital contents.

The plot is superfine, and most of the parts feature the chase to retrieve the secret government documents. India’s partner in crime is the British spy, French. Reading the novel, one would notice that there is some intended love interest between the two and even though it does not develop in this first book, it is expected more from them in the future books. She is indeed attracted to French, but it is unfortunate that she views it as an annoyance.

India Black and the Widow of Windsor

India Black is back in the second book in the Madam of Espionage series. In this book, she is summoned to a meeting with the Prime Minister of England, Benjamin Disraeli. It happens that Queen Victoria has been consulting mediums to stay in touch with her dead husband, Albert. She has been instructed that Albert want to spend Christmas at Balmoral.

However, through intelligence, Disraeli discovers that the Scots are planning an attempt on the Queens life through an extremist nationalistic group. Disraeli has been informed that his presence at Balmoral is also required; he seeks the help of the British undercover operative and the prostitute, India. India will have to disguise herself as a maid and infiltrate the ranks that Disraeli and French would be unable to infiltrate and hopefully they will be able to avoid any incident of the Crown’s life.

India hatches a plan to leave her brothel under the charge of another madam and heads for Scotland. She is also posing as a maid for the Marchioness of Tullibardine, an old and unkempt lady. After someone tries to poison the Queen’s hot chocolate, and then an incident at the stable, it becomes quite clear it was an assassination attempt. French and India have to work double time to find out the person behind the attack before the football match that is to be held, and there will be so many people such that it would be almost impossible to keep an eye on everyone.

You will love this second title in the series. India is a well-crafted and a brilliant heroine, which perfectly fits in the Victorian times. She was once a former prostitute, but now she is the boss of her own brothel. In the first book, she was blackmailed into assisting the investigation of the crown, and this led her to cross paths with Prime Minister Disraeli. Now in the second novel, the Prime Minister requires the help and calls upon India hoping that she can infiltrate the ranks.

India is a fearless, smart and a perfect choice for French and Disraeli even though she has no idea of how to be a maid. The setting for this book is impressive- it is set in Scotland in the midst of winter. The mutual attraction between India and French gradually grows, and it is expected that something will finally come out from these two characters. Additionally, there are scenes of action as French and India continue the hunt for the people attempting on the Queen’s life.

India Black and the Shadows of Anarchy

In the third title in Madam of Espionage mysteries, India Black is once again called to work by the prime minister to secretly infiltrate an anarchist group. Revolution has come to England and the Dark Legion, one of the most lethal anarchist’s team has managed to assassinate several earls and lords in London.

India is customarily contacted by French the spy working for the Queen. However, this time they spy is not involved in the contact, and hence India must face all the danger of convincing the anarchist that she is on their side without French’s backup.

The second in the series is a solid Victorian mystery. The plot is complicated and features likable characters and entirely convincing plot lines which are also entertaining. There is Vincent, the smart street kid. He is talented when it comes to spying, gathering information and completing his assigned missions. French does not provide backup for India as he is on another assignment for the Prime Minister. This is a right moment for India to prove that she has what it takes to infiltrate and bring the culprits of the assassination into justice.

Book Series In Order » Authors » Carol K. Carr