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Seven for a Secret (Timothy Wilde, #2)
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Seven for a Secret (Timothy Wilde #2)

4.07  ·  Rating details ·  3,383 Ratings  ·  514 Reviews
Six months after the formation of the NYPD, its most reluctant and talented officer, Timothy Wilde, thinks himself well versed in his city’s dark practices — until he learns of the gruesome underworld of lies and corruption ruled by the "blackbirders," who snatch free Northerners of color from their homes, masquerade them as slaves, and sell them South to toil as plantatio ...more
Hardcover, 445 pages
Published September 17th 2013 by G.P. Putnam's Sons (first published 2013)
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(B-) 70% | Satisfactory
Notes: Cautious and wimpy, it’s cloyed by retrospective moralizing: so delicately inoffensive as to be narratively ineffectual.
I gushed over Lyndsay Faye's The Gods of Gotham, her debut foray into the dark heart of New York City 1845 and the violent and inauspicious origins of its first police force -- the copper stars. In its pages Faye strikes a remarkable balance between the thrilling and cerebral aspects of a good mystery and blends it with the rich detail and sumptuous atmosphere of the best historical fiction.

More than the mystery and the historical details, what really makes this series a great read is Faye's co
 Danielle The Book Huntress (Back to the Books)
I love this series. The author immerses us in the time period, gritty and ugly and seamy elements and all. Timothy Wilde is an incredibly engaging and sympathetic narrator. He has a powerful sense of justice, but at the same time, it's impossible for him not to be a little cynical, if not very aware that lofty ideals mean nothing in the world in which he inhabits.

Timothy is permanently scarred both physically and emotionally by the events of the 1st book, The Gods of Gotham, and he's slowly fin
A disappointing second installment. Timothy Wilde seemed much more street-smart and competent in The Gods of Gotham, and the love-hate relationship between Timothy and his brother Valentine was over-used here. As with The Gods of Gotham, I found the tough-minded, politically savvy Valentine with all his personal demons much more interesting than the underdog Timothy. Timothy spent too much time pining for Mercy Underhill, and the way his thoughts were written continually reminded me that he was ...more
Benjamin Thomas
Six months after the events of The Gods of Gotham, where-in we get to participate in the 1845 founding and very early days of the New York City Police Department (NYPD), we catch up with young Timothy Wilde, a "Copper Star" in the new police force. He's a proven asset now, an excellent solver of crimes and finder of missing things, and has therefore been relieved of the necessity of walking a beat as a "rounder" in Ward 6. Rather, he is a sort of special "detective" (although that term won't be ...more
Mar 16, 2016 rated it really liked it
The second installment in Lyndsay Faye's excellently detailed, historically accurate series about the founding of the police force in antebellum NYC is a story about the illegal slave trade and systematic kidnapping of free blacks to be sold to the South for profit.

Having just finished a history of the period (see New York Exposed: The Police Scandal That Shocked the Nation and Launched the Progressive Era ), I am even more impressed with Faye's attention to detail and meticulous research. Usua
Aug 06, 2013 rated it liked it
'Seven For A Secret' is good enough to disappoint.

It is clear that the author, Lyndsay Faye, has real talent. The writing is sometimes excellent. Too often, however, it veers into being irritating, overly worked or overly arch.

The idea behind the novel, the way the law was used in the mid-nineteenth century US to return runaway black slaves to the American south and how certain slave catchers were none to fussy about whether they collected freemen or runaways, is an excellent one. Her central po
I found 'Seven For a Secret' available through the Vine Program and thought it sounded like a great story. I soon realized it was the second book in a new series, of course I wanted to read the series in order. So, I picked up the first book 'The Gods of Gotham' and as it turns out I was pleased that 'Seven for a Secret' led me to 'The Gods of Gotham'.

I read 'The Gods of Gotham' immediately before starting 'Seven For a Secret' I thought that would be the best way to keep the characters vivid in
Oct 27, 2013 rated it really liked it
Lyndsay Faye won me over with her novel The Gods of Gotham. A mystery crime thriller set in early New York prior to the Civil War. Seven for a Secret is the second novel in what I hope will be a long series of tales.

The NYPD is only six months old and Copper Star Timothy Wilde is still recovering emotionally from his dealings with the serial child murderer in The Gods of Gotham. He is on shift at the station when a disheveled and distraught beautiful young woman staggers in crying out that she
Feb 18, 2014 rated it really liked it
I seem to be in the minority among reviewers here, because I liked "Seven for a Secret" better than "Gods of Gotham." I'm giving this four stars (as I did "Gods"), but I'd consider it a 4.2 or something. I think the (near) lack of the Mercy Underhill plotline helped things along for me. Timothy does tend to bumble around making an ass of himself, but he does it in as self-aware a way as possible. I find that quality believable and sympathetic - I'm not sure how one is supposed to become complete ...more
Sep 10, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: crime-thrillers
Brilliant Historical Crime Fiction

Seven For A Secret by Lyndsay Faye is one of the most atmospheric, historically rich crime thrillers that I have read in a long time, and it is certainly one of the best historical crime novels I have read. In terms of imagery and the use of language it is absolutely spot on for the English usage in New York in the 1840s, of both native New Yorkers. Fortunately for those easily confused there is a selected terminology that criminals used at the time, adapted fro
Trigger warnings: murder, kidnapping, slavery, racism, suicide, self harm, mentions of having been in a fire.

4.25 stars.

I remember the first book in this series taking me FOREVER to get into, but for some reason with this one I was hooked on the very first page.

It's a pretty heartbreaking story at times, dealing with the way that people of colour were treated in 1840s New York. It covers the white protagonist's realisation of just how bad things are, when people of colour can be kidnapped and
Dec 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I wish I could more eloquently put into words just how much I adored this novel. It truly came to life in my hands, and I could. not. put. it. down. Faye has a way with prose that is unbelievably engaging, witty, humorous, colorful, and at times, heart-breaking. I think she must have done an intense amount of research to bring to life the horrors of NYC in the late 1800s, the fears of free African Americans as they fought for their already hard-earned freedom, the inhumanity of slave catchers, a ...more
Jun 30, 2015 rated it it was amazing
What a fun book. I loved this and the fact that it was historical fiction was an extra bonus. I was taken for a ride. I didn't have to think or question or quiet my pet peeves. It was so enjoyable..........and since I did the audio, I have to say KUDOS to the narrator, Steven Boyer. He did a phenomenal job. I cannot wait to read the other 2 books in this series.

The characters were fun, surprising, and oh so different. I loved that. Valentine and Timothy are brothers and they couldn't be more dif
Sep 20, 2013 rated it really liked it
This book is the second in the historical police detective series that began with The Gods of Gotham. It picks up six months after the events of the first book, and continues to follow the career of 28-year-old Timothy Wilde, a member of the newly formed “copper stars,” or New York City Policemen.

The story begins on Valentine’s Day in 1846, when Tim and his colleague Jakob Piest are approached by Lucy Adams, a desperate woman claiming her family has been stolen. She is African-American, though h
Liz Barnsley
Sep 05, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
First of all thank you so much for the unexpected pleasure of an advanced copy of this novel through my door one day. A bookworms dream…

When I started reading this terrific story , I had two thoughts – firstly I realised that it was a sequel to Gods of Gotham, a book I have had in my peripheral vision for a while but had yet to get around to – and secondly that nothing in the world was going to stop me reading this now, even though my pedantic side would usually have forced me to read Book One i
Jun 11, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 4-star, own
Seven for a Secret is great sequel to the Gods of Gotham, although I'm not sure if it's a better book-- some things were better, others not so much.

I really like Timothy Wilde, he's not a perfect man, but he's good enough to care about the underdogs. He spends a little too much time pitying and being a touch too sentimental -- for a man of his time anyway. I do love his relationship with Valentine. He is such a little brother; and their little spats, and fights, can't hide how much they care abo
Kate Sherwood
Sep 24, 2015 rated it liked it
Audiobook version - narrator isn't flashy, but toward the end of the book when a character appeared somewhere he had no reason to be, I knew who it was immediately, even before the text identified him, because of the voice the narrator used. Not a caricature, not a weird accent, just a slightly different voice used for that character. Well done, I'd say!

The story itself? I'm giving an extra star for Valentine, a rare example of an alpha-done-right. Tim somehow got stupid and naive between the tw
Michelle Young
Sep 06, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This book satisfies readers looking for complex characters, an intriguing mystery, a richly drawn setting, and exquisite language. There are such beautiful sentences in this story that made me pause and reread. Normally I don't have time to reread books, but I am tempted to revisit this one.

I thought Gods of Gotham was too slow and kind of dull in moments (even though well done), but Seven for a Secret moved along at a better pace.
Jan 23, 2014 rated it it was ok
Disappointed. Timothy was turning into overly sentimental and whiny person. Those love letters were so corny and I am tired of his fascination to Silky Marsh.

This book is about the love triangle spiced up with some mystery. (Or is it love square?)
Apr 15, 2017 rated it it was amazing
The second Timothy Wilde mystery is the middle book in a trilogy and an examination of the threats to free blacks living in New York City, and by extension, anywhere north of the Mason-Dixon line. When a free black woman rushes into police headquarters at the Tombs in 1846, claiming her son and her sister were kidnapped by slave hunters from the south, Copper Star Timothy Wilde takes the case, and becomes embroiled in a complex, heartbreaking case that earns him the wrong kind of attention from ...more
Beth Cato
I received an Advanced Reading Copy of this book via LibraryThing Early Reviewers.

Gods of Gotham was certainly a book strong enough to stand alone. I had high expectations for this sequel, and they were fulfilled. is dark, brutal, and sometimes a difficult read because of the unflinching portrayal of racism and exploitation in 1846 New York City. Whereas the first book focused on the ugliness of child prostitution and the plight of the starving Irish, this book shifts the focus to slavery and ho
Aug 14, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: signed
Whenever I read the second book an author has published I do it with a certain degree of trepidation. After all, they don't call it a sophomore slump for nothing.

Such is the case here, although I'll chalk a part of it up to personal preference. I enjoy stories that have a definite end in sight. Got to catch the killer. Got to throw that ring into Mt. Doom. The plot here is slow to develop and although I enjoy the setting of the newly created police department in 1840s New York City, I felt ther
Aug 22, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: reviews, favorites
Faye has outdone herself with this sequel to The Gods of Gotham. I didn't think it was possible, but she did. All praise NYC Copper Star Timothy Wilde, his Tammany Hall FDNY brother Valentine, and a colorful cast of characters, some of them new, many returning favorites, all of them unforgettable. The crime in this novel involves the kidnapping of free blacks to be sold in the South as slaves. Heart-breaking scenes stitched together with moments of beauty and truth, all taking place in the middl ...more
Apr 25, 2016 rated it really liked it
This is the second mystery novel starring brothers Timothy and Valentine Wilde, two of the most interesting and unique characters I've read in the genre in years. Their background story is very well conceived, and their opposed personalities clash and come together in complex and very humane ways. The plot itself centers around the horrors of Southern kidnappings of freed African Americans before the Civil War. Thank goodness such things are now behind us. I was appalled at some of the descripti ...more
Mar 09, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio, favorites
I am hooked on this series, in no small part because the audio productions have been SO well done. I think I'd like reading them in print, but Steven Boyer's narration just seems to take these stories to another level. The suspense tread (free blacks accused of being runaway slaves), the 1840s New York City setting and the way the author immerses the reader into that world - it's really fantastic. Timothy seemed unnecessarily dense at time for the sake of "educating" the reader, but that's one s ...more
May 22, 2014 rated it it was ok
The setting is interesting, and we stay located inside the world. But this is a puppet show. Fine for a beach read (but do wait for the paperback) but otherwise a bit of a toss off in terms of character, depth of mystery, etc. Heavy on the melodrama, and the actual craft - the sentence to sentence writing - is frequently difficult to suffer through.
May 03, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2015, fiction, mystery, _signed
Not as good as Gods of Gotham, but still excellent. I might write up an actual review this weekend once it has all settled.
Molly O'keefe
May 18, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Can't. Stop. Reading. This. Series. Sensitive and funny and dark and sharp.
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“Being brave and being alone aren't the same thing.” 13 likes
“In retrospect, I am very nearly as sharp as I pretend to be.” 4 likes
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