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City of Darkness and Light

(Molly Murphy #13)

3.87  ·  Rating details ·  2,965 ratings  ·  272 reviews
Molly and Daniel Sullivan are settling happily into the new routines of parenthood, but their domestic bliss is shattered the night a gang retaliates against Daniel for making a big arrest. Daniel wants his family safely out of New York City as soon as possible. In shock and grieving, but knowing she needs to protect their infant son Liam, Molly agrees to take him on the l ...more
Hardcover, 320 pages
Published March 4th 2014 by Minotaur Books
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Average rating 3.87  · 
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 ·  2,965 ratings  ·  272 reviews

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I have read some of the less glowing reviews here and then decided to read the book. I feared that I would be influenced but this mystery impressed me enough. For more knowledgeable people this book had warts and all, but I can only relay what I felt. Had I not had my spoilers I would have had more praise for this Parisian whodunit.

During the first fifth of the story I couldn't gloss over the boorishness of Molly's husband. Married life is fraught with desensitization, compromise, or rebellion.
Heather Moll
Dec 05, 2013 rated it did not like it
Shelves: mystery
Dear author:

Please spell Dreyfusard correctly. There should be a y every time, not just some of the time.
Please be consistent with character names i.e. in the same conversation the housekeeper should not refer to Reynold Bryce as M. Bryce, Mr. Bryce and Monsieur Bryce. Pick one and stick with it.
The Dreyfus affair began in 1894, and exploded in 1898 with the acquittal of Esterhazy and Zola's J'accuse, and continued with the 1899 retrial. In 1905 it was still divisive, but not exactly the front p
Mar 29, 2014 rated it it was ok
Meh...I wanted to like it because it's Paris but I should have stopped with this series after the last book. This one was marginally better since there wasn't much Daniel but everything just felt wrong about it. It took way too long to get to the actual mystery and Molly's "friendship" with the artists was just an excuse to throw some actual historical people in the book. The majority of the first half of the book was very unnecessary, especially the frequency of being told how and when Molly nu ...more
Be prepared to be wowed by lucky #13 in the Molly Murphy mystery series. It is the second of the series to take place primarily outside of New York City, in another country. The country this time is France, and the city is Paris in its heyday of cutting edge artists and intellectuals. The year is 1905, and major cities, such as New York and Paris, are bursting with history and change upon which the twentieth century will be built. Rhys Bowen once again seamlessly weaves the fiction of Molly's ex ...more
Apr 01, 2014 rated it did not like it
The only reason I picked this book up was: Mystery! Plucky girl Detective! Paris!

Alas, I am not going to add this author to my list of must-reads.

(view spoiler)

I also could NOT believe that she walked across the street, bought a bagette, and asked the baker's wife to BABYSIT HER 9 MONTH OLD SON, so she could wander the streets
Aug 18, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Mully Murphy is comfort reading for me: usually a witty, light mystery packed with feminism and historical details. Alas, it seems no longer to be the case – after 13 instalments it seems that Molly lost her spite. This book was mostly about walking around aimlessly and miserably. There were also a few superficial discussions about art paintings thrown in the mix, which couldn’t have been more repetitive or boring. Not sure I should continue at this point and probably need another comfort read f ...more
Mark Baker
Mar 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mystery, 2014
When a case Daniel is working on turns dangerous, Molly and Liam leave New York to join Sid and Gus in Paris. But when her reception is not what she expected, is Molly in more danger now than she was before?

More than any other book in the series, I felt this one had a large number of real people popping up in Molly's fictional world. The plot was good with some twists I didn't expect and the characters are so real by this point I just love visiting them. All told, it was a great trip back to 190
It's always great fun to spend some time with Molly Murphy, now known as Mrs. Molly Sullivan. The story was great, loved that Sid and Gus had a bigger part in this book. And also, loved that Molly got to spend time in another country and town. My reason, why I gave this book a three star rating was. I felt in places, the story just kept going in circles. I didn't really feel, any growth in Molly as a character even though now, she is a mother. I didn't really care that much for Daniel in this bo ...more
This book was not as engaging as prior entries. It was much slower paced and seemed to drag. Plus there was too much ‘touring’ around Paris.

This was a ‘Let’s meet famous people’ book as well. Pablo Picasso, Gertrude Stein, Mary Cassatt, and Booth Tarkington all make an appearance. While it is possible to run into celebrities, I always find it hard to buy into it happening in a novel because it seems forced. Realistically, what are the odds of an average person crossing paths with four famous peo
Did not finish.

The book failed the 50 page rule.

Captain Daniel Sullivan is an annoying, obnoxious, arse. Only the fact it's a library book saved it from being thrown with great force across the room.
Mar 25, 2020 rated it it was ok
A fluffy read not requiring much thought. Incredible in lack of historical accuracy. I particularly dislike the addition of same sex relationships being promoted in books where these affairs would have been hidden and discreet during the time period. It's like the author is pushing an agenda. ...more
Feb 01, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This novel is the thirteenth in the Molly Murphy series, but certainly is not bad luck. Rhys Bowen continues her saga of Molly and her husband Daniel, a New York policeman. Now, they have a son and a new home; all is going well until an Italian gang sends a bomb hurtling through the front door. Liam is upstairs with the maid who covers the baby with her body.

Daniel's reaction is to send Mollie and Liam to Paris to stay with her friends Sid and Gus. Arriving in Paris, Molly discovers that her tw
Oct 27, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I saw this book in my local library and was captured by the front cover art and the jacket blurb.

This is the first Molly Murphy mystery I have read, and it takes the heroine to Paris in the earliest days of the modern art movement. Sent to visit her friends while her police officer husband deals with a gang that has threatened the family, Molly believes she will be safe.

Until she arrives in Paris and discovers that her friends have disappeared.

The book is rich in detail, peopled with historical
Jan 27, 2014 rated it liked it
I like Rhys Bowen's books. I have read all of Constable Evans, most of Lady Georgie and now all of Molly Murphy Sullivan. The characters are all people you want to spend time with. They do have the most interesting adventures. Her books are fun to read and this one is no exception.

The plot device to get Molly to Paris is a little over the top but I can overlook that. Turn of the century Paris is such a wonderful place to set a book that how it gets to be the setting can be forgiven. The mystery
May 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
Another delightful Molly Murphy mystery, this time set in Paris in the early 1900's where Molly runs into contemporary famous people such as Gertrude Stein, Degas, Booth Tarkington and Picasso. The Dreyfus affair also plays a small part. ...more
Apr 04, 2014 rated it liked it
I love Molly Murphy Mysteries. They are fast moving,clever mysteries. I also love the historical facts that are included. But what happened to Josette. I was hoping Gus and Sid would save her.
Nick Duretta
Oct 22, 2017 rated it it was ok
Having greatly enjoyed Rhys Bowen's Royal Spyness series, I decided to drop in on another of her characters--spunky Molly Murphy (Sullivan), a young Irish lass solving mysteries in the early 20th century. Alas! Even though this one takes place in turn-of-the-century Paris, amid its storied art scene (and includes figures such as Degas, Picasso, Gertrude Stein and others), it's disappointingly flat. There's none of the whimsy or cleverness of the Royal Spyness books. Granted, I know this one is r ...more
Nov 19, 2018 rated it liked it
In this Molly Murphy mystery, Molly goes to Paris in order to escape the early Mafia which has retaliated against her policeman husband's attempts to arrest some of its members by bombing their home, killing the nursemaid in the process. Molly and her baby Liam go to Paris to stay with Sid and Gus, Molly's steadfast friends. When Molly arrives in Paris, Sid and Gus are no where to be found and Molly must try to find them in a part of the world where she has never been and knows no one. ...more
Jul 08, 2016 rated it really liked it
#13 in the Molly Murphy series. It's May 1905, after a Mafia reprisal attack that blows up his house and kills his servant girl, NYPD Captain Daniel Sullivan sends his wife, Molly, and Eight month old son, Liam, to Paris for their safety. They had been invited by Molly's Bohemian friends Sid and Gus.
While there they become friends with American artist Mary Cassatt and meet Pablo Picasso, Edgar Degas, Booth Tarkington, and Gertrude Stein. Atmospheric period adventure.

Molly Murphy series - Molly a
Mar 30, 2014 rated it it was ok
The latest book in the Molly Murphy series finds Molly with her eight month old son, Liam, seeking a safe haven in Paris. New York is under siege with the dreaded Cosa Nostra terrorizing citizens and frustrating police efforts to curtail the violence; Molly and Daniel’s house has been destroyed by a bomb and their beloved Nanny killed trying to protect their baby. Since her friends, Sid and Gus, are living in Paris honing their artistic and literary skills, immersed in Gertrude Stein’s salon and ...more
Jan 31, 2014 rated it liked it
Not my favorite in the Molly Murphy series. It took quite awhile to get to the nitty gritty. It also seemed to wrap up very quickly. It just didn't seem "right."
As for my thoughts on Daniel, thankfully he wasn't in this much although I realize his character must be the way he is due to the era the series is set in. That being said, something happens near the beginning making me think something was going to happen but of course Rhys Bowen is too nice for that :). If you read it, you'll know what
May 06, 2015 rated it really liked it
Molly goes to Paris after her house she shares w/ her, now husband, Captain Daniel Sullivan, is bombed and burned, and the maid is killed saving their son. Her long time friends Sid and Gus are in Paris and invited her to come for a visit, Daniel feels she will be safe there until he has completed his case against the leader of the Costa Nostra mob. Molly arrives to find Sid and Gus missing and her first order of business is to find them.
Jun 21, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: library-books
A bomb explores in the Sullivan's home burning it and killing the maid as she protected Liam. Daniel decides to send Molly and Liam to Paris to keep them safe. After a voyage Molly arrives in Paris to Sid and Gus missing. Looking for them Molly encounters the Paris police when trying to question a person who might know where they have gone. Molly begins to wonder if they are safe. ...more
Cece Cope
Nov 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Vintage Mollie Murphy but set in Gertrude Stein's Paris

On the short leash that the role of nursing mother allows, Mollie's quest first for the missing Sid and Gus and later for the murderer that has put them into hiding has her risking her safety or her freedom almost every time she leaves her new baby.
May 10, 2017 rated it it was ok
Meh. I don't mind Molly Murphy, but her adventures feel so girl guide-y. I don't know what it is I find dull, but there is no spice. This book in particular felt repetitive, and the story went nowhere for a long time. I really did not like the real world characters used in the book, either. I think I may have come to the end of my time with this series. ...more
Lucy Burdette
Feb 08, 2014 rated it it was amazing
A delightful visit to early 19th century Paris with Rhys Bowen's delightful, smart, spunky heroine Molly Murphy. Bowen is a master with historical whodunnits, producing lively characters, a fascinating setting, and a clever mystery. ...more
Feb 22, 2014 rated it really liked it
I was sure I had the killer figured out and was pretty disappointed that it was so easy. I was wrong, although I did suspect the actual killer too, I just wasn't sure what their motive was. ...more
Apr 21, 2014 rated it really liked it
I love this series and this one was great - I had no idea who the killer was! The only reason I didn't give it 5 stars is that I felt that ending was a bit rushed, but I still enjoyed it. ...more
Jun 02, 2014 rated it really liked it
This is just a good mystery, the kind that you like to read sitting on the porch on a summer afternoon.
Rachel McMillan
Feb 25, 2015 rated it really liked it
Does anyone else kinda wish Molly had ended up with Jacob instead of Daniel?
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Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 1 Feb 28, 2015 09:10AM  

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"I'm a New York Times bestselling mystery author, winner of both Agatha and Anthony awards for my Molly Murphy mysteries, set in 1902 New York City.

I have recently published two internationally bestselling WWII novels, one of them a #1 Kindle bestseller, the other selling almost half a million copies to date.

I also write the Agatha-winning Royal Spyness series, about the British royal family in th

Other books in the series

Molly Murphy (1 - 10 of 17 books)
  • Murphy's Law (Molly Murphy Mysteries, #1)
  • Death of Riley (Molly Murphy Mysteries, #2)
  • For the Love of Mike (Molly Murphy Mysteries, #3)
  • In Like Flynn (Molly Murphy Mysteries, #4)
  • Oh Danny Boy (Molly Murphy Mysteries, #5)
  • In Dublin's Fair City (Molly Murphy Mysteries, #6)
  • Tell Me, Pretty Maiden (Molly Murphy Mysteries, #7)
  • In a Gilded Cage (Molly Murphy, #8)
  • The Last Illusion (Molly Murphy Mysteries, #9)
  • Bless the Bride (Molly Murphy, #10)

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