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A Mortal Likeness (Victorian Mystery, #2)
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A Mortal Likeness

(Victorian Mystery #2)

3.66  ·  Rating details ·  229 Ratings  ·  64 Reviews
A photographer in Whitechapel, London, Sarah Bain is also a private detective—skilled at capturing others’ dark secrets, and expert at keeping her own. When a wealthy banker, Sir Gerald Mariner, posts a handsome reward for finding his missing infant, all of London joins in, hoping to win that money for themselves. Usually discouraged by a saturated market, Sarah is instead ...more
Kindle Edition, 304 pages
Published January 9th 2018 by Crooked Lane Books
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The eye of the camera doesn't lie.

Sarah Bain lifts that camera gently into position. She and her detective partner, Lord Hugh Staunton, have been hired to photograph an unsuspecting couple near the Crystal Palace in London. The gentleman's jilted wife needs proof of his waywardness. A quick snap taken of the saucy redhead leaning seductively towards him is quite the catch. But later, Sarah's developed photo reveals a man in the background who greatly resembles her own father who has been missing
Dec 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
This was a fast-paced whodunnit full of enough twists to give you whiplash!

It is the second in a series and while it took me awhile to catch up with what has happened, it reads just fine as a stand alone.

You will be questioning each suspect, then believe in their innocence, then will find more reasons to think they’re guilty over and over again! This whodunnit changes directions rapidly, and will give even the best detective readers a run for their money.

This story read a bit like YA, but the
Carol (Bookaria)
I'm a fan of a well-plotted mystery, although I usually read the ones that take place in contemporary times, this one managed to keep me engaged throughout.

This is a novel that takes place during Victorian times in London. The main character is photographer and private detective Sarah Bain. She and her business partner Hugh have been retained by a wealthy man to investigate the kidnapping of his youngest son.

Sarah and Hugh then embark on the task of investigating the person responsible for the d
Susanne Strong
Feb 01, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: crooked-lane
4 Stars.

An Entertaining Mystery Set in Victorian Times.

Sarah Bain is a photographer and a private detective. She and her partner Hugh are hired by a wealthy man to investigate a crime. The kidnapping of a young boy. Tension ramps up when Sarah’s camera reveals more than she bargained for and she must determine what is real and what is not real. Soon her suspect list grows and Sarah and Hugh find themselves in danger, and their anxiety and fear is palpable.

Several side stories occur which left me
Holly  B
A setting in Victorian England and a photographer Sarah Bain who has become a private eye is on her next case since solving the identity of Jack the Ripper (in book #1).

Hired by Sir Gerald Mariner in London to find his infant son, Robin, who is missing and believed to have been kidnapped. Her and her partner Hugh are hot on the trail of suspects possibly involved.

There are a few side stories involving Sarah and some dark secrets from her past come up and haunt her throughout the story. She i
Paul Falk
Nov 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Transported back in time to the latter part of the nineteenth century, I find myself standing on a cobblestone street somewhere in the heart of London. The startling clitter clatter of a horse and buggy pass before me. Kerosene lanterns light up the darkened street. Dampness and an overriding smell of horse manure overwhelm my acute senses. Jack the Ripper's reign of terror had just come to a crashing end. Different time, different world.

This exquisitely, well-written narrative effortlessly, sw
Montzalee Wittmann
Nov 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A Mortal Likeness (Victorian Mystery #2) by Laura Joh Rowland is a book set back in the late 1870's and is book two in the series. I didn't read book one, although now I want to read it, I had no problems reading this book without reading book one first. I requested this book and the review is voluntary.
I really like the main characters. They are well developed and certainly not your normal characters. The woman is a woman that has a mind of her own, which is not really liked at that time, and
Nov 30, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
I’ve never read a Victorian mystery before so I wasn’t quite sure what to expect. But this intriguing story pulled me in right from the start. There were so many different diversions that I wasn’t quite sure which one I wanted resolved first. Where was missing baby Robin? What exactly were Hugh and Sarah’s past criminal activities? Who murdered Noel Vaughn and his mistress? What is the story behind the disappearance of Benjamin Bain? The author manages to successfully weave these multiple questi ...more
Feb 20, 2018 rated it really liked it
A Mortal Likeness is the second book in the Victorian Mystery series. I have not yet read the first book, The Ripper's Shadow, but was easily able to follow the plot and characters in this story. So, it isn't necessary to have read the first book to enjoy this newest book in this series. There are references to the first book, however. I very much enjoyed this book, so I'm going to backtrack and read The Ripper's Shadow.

Sarah Bain is a photographer and a detective. Sarah is hired by Sir Gerald
Linda Strong
Dec 30, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2017
This is a real treat for lovers of historical fiction. A MORTAL LIKENESS sees the return of Sarah Bain, Lord Hugh Staunton, and Mick O'Reilly. Sarah and Hugh run a private detective agency... mainly because they are unsuitable for any other type of employment and they solved a major previous murder case.

The author has done a fine job of combining two different stories. It's when they dovetail that things get really dangerous.

Sir Gerald Mariner hires Sarah and Hugh to find his kidnapped infant so
This historical mystery is exactly what I like; set in Victorian London with a strong female lead and supporting characters I would love to have as friends.

Sarah Bain and her friend Lord Hugh Staunton have opened their own detective agency. The difficulty is that they're running out of money and need some wealthy clients to pay the rent. So far it's been lost items and cheating spouses, none of it very lucrative. Things change when they become mixed up in the kidnapping of Robin Mariner, the inf
Jan 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing

Unlikely compatriots and fellow private detectives Sarah Bain and Lord Hugh Staunton, are thrown into, well are lured into really, the case of a kidnapped young child, Robin Mariner. The beloved son of wealthy banker and hard nosed businessman Sir Gerald Mariner, a friend to those in high places, has gone missing. Sir Gerald hires them with a retainer they cannot resist. He insists on a confidentiality clause which puts Sarah immediately at odds with her beau, Police Constable Thomas Ba
Jan 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
This lively yarn embraces the private lives of a small troupe of amateur detectives to offer an unexpected bite of 19th century reality from a courageous slice of perseverance. Combining the limited knowledge they possess they attempt to unravel the knots in a very long string of challenges, while trying not to upset the delicate balance of social hierarchy and propriety.

It’s a personally punishing time for each of them for very different reasons and yet they perform to the best of their ability
Feb 10, 2018 rated it did not like it
Upfront, I couldn't finish this. I was thoroughly put off by the inappropriate sexual encounters of the main characters. This is supposed to be a mystery set in Victorian times! I don't believe most people of the time acted in this manner-homosexual affairs, promiscuous relationships. I know this is not what I'm looking to read about with a historical mysyery.
Linda Baker
The second book in the Victorian Mystery series featuring photographer Sarah Bain and her titled friend, Lord Hugh Staunton. The two have formed a detective agency after their success in The Shadow of the Ripper. Sarah was evicted from the premises of her studio as a direct result of that first case; Hugh was disowned by his family after they discovered his homosexuality. Sarah and Hugh not only work but also live together, along with Hugh's manservant and a street urchin, Mick, who assisted the ...more
Brenda H
Sep 15, 2018 rated it really liked it
A Mortal Likeness is the second book in the Victorian Mystery series by Laura Joh Rowland. Our protagonist, Sarah Bain, is a photographer in Whitechapel, London. She is also a private detective. Along with her friend, Lord Hugh Staunton, a disgraced nobleman, she is hired by a jilted wife to find evidence of an affair.

While tailing the wayward husband, Sarah and Hugh find themselves in the Crystal Palace. Seizing an opportunity to catch the man and his mistress in several incriminating moments,
Feb 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Beautifully written. I'd give it ten stars if I could. I can't wait to read more from this series.
Jan 15, 2018 rated it liked it
I’ve read and liked Rowland’s historical mysteries set in Japan, but I skipped the first in this series set in Victorian England. (It was about Jack the Ripper, and serial killers are not my thing.) The plot in this one sounded more interesting to me, so I decided to give it a try.

Sarah Bain is a partner in a fledging detective agency in London. When she and her partner and friend, Hugh, happen on evidence related to a high-profile kidnapping case during another investigation, they are hired by
Jan 22, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Photographer Sarah Bain and her friend Hugh Staunton are eager to get their newly formed private inquiry agency off the ground but so far they haven’t had much success and realize that they need to find a means to provide for themselves before they are out on the streets.

A fortuitous turn of events will have them working on a child abduction case for one of the wealthiest families in London. If they can get the child back safe and sound surely their services will be sought after but Sir Gerald M
Deborah Crain
Jan 17, 2018 rated it really liked it
Sara Bain's photography business is no more, and Lord Hugh and Mick have teamed up with her to form a detective agency. Clients are in short supply, and Sara and her crew getting involved in a kidnapping while following a wayward husband. They move to the elegant home of a wealthy man to find out who kidnapped his son, and everyone has a secret to hide. All of the occupants is not above killing someone to keep the secrets undercover. Several violent events follow, and as a reader I was never sur ...more
Megan Worley
Dec 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
A fast paced historical mystery with enough twists to keep you guessing. The story has a bevy of possible suspects, each with their own possible motives and means. I constantly thought I knew who it was, only to change my mind a few pages later. The story takes place in Victorian London and Rowland does a great job of pulling you in and setting the scene without being overly descriptive. Although this is the second book in the series it works well enough as a standalone and I was able to catch o ...more
Jan 06, 2018 rated it liked it
I was provided with a free copy of A Mortal Likeness by the publisher, Crooked Lane Books, in return for my honest review. All thoughts expressed below are my own.

A Mortal Likeness by Laura Joh Rowland is called a "Victorian Mystery" and is the second book a series. I was told that this can be read as a standalone and did not personally read the first book in this series (The Ripper's Shadow), but can agree that I did not feel like I needed the first novel to understand or enjoy A Mortal Likenes
Kathy Martin
Dec 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Photographer Sarah Bain and disgraced Lord Hugh Staunton have formed an investigations agency. They have experience because they solved the Jack the Ripper case in THE RIPPER'S SHADOW. Unfortunately their methods require them to keep their success a secret. They are struggling to find clients and build their reputation because Hugh's family has only given him a year's worth of allowance and then they are on their own. While they are trying to get evidence on an adulterer, the big case in town is ...more
Jan 09, 2018 rated it liked it
Sarah Bain and Lord Hugh Staunton are unlikely sleuths. After surviving a violent confrontation with Jack the Ripper in the first book of this series, the two are hired by Sir Gerald Mariner, an imperious, wealthy, and well-connected man whose young son, Robin, has been kidnapped. In 1889, Sarah and Hugh move into Mariner's mansion at Sir Gerald's request in order to spy on his relatives, acquaintances, and servants. The abduction, Mariner believes, was an inside job. Adding to Sarah's anxiety i ...more
Jul 15, 2018 rated it liked it
Okay, so a lot of people did not care for the first book and I loved it and couldn't understand why others didn't care for it. Well, I think I understand now. Sarah & Hugh have officially started their detective agency and they get a huge client through Hugh's father dealing with a kidnapped baby. Mick had been sent to the nuns for schooling and a place to live, but he shows up on Sarah & Hugh's doorstep. I really enjoyed Hugh in the first book, but he was pretty irritating. Mick is the ...more
Marsha Hubbell
Feb 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
"A Mortal Likeness" continues the Victorian mystery series by Laura Joh Rowland. Miss Sarah Baines and Lord Hugh Stanton find themselves in dire straits following the Ripper investigation and persona non grata where the police are concerned. They decide to form a detective agency. After a few small cases, they finally hit it big when they are hired to investigate the missing infant son of Sir Gerald Mariner, a wealthy banker. Was it an outside kidnapping or is one of the family members to blame? ...more
Mar 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: victorian, mystery
Photographer Sarah Bain and her friends solved the mystery of Jack the Ripper in the first book in Rowland's series; they also left themselves open to the possibility of ruin in their pursuit. Lord Hugh Staunton was exposed as a homosexual. His father disowned him. Sarah was evicted from her beloved photography studio. Facing a dismal future, the two decide to form their own detective agency, based out of Hugh's temporary home. That is the situation in which we find them as this novel opens. The ...more
Jan 24, 2018 rated it liked it
3 stars

I received a free copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

This is the second book in a series, but is a stand-alone mystery. You don't have to have read the first book (which I haven't) to enjoy this book. This was a fairly entertaining murder mystery.

Sarah Bain is a photographer and amateur detective in Victorian London. Her partner is Hugh, a disgraced Lord that was shunned by his family for being gay. While following a cheating husband Sarah and Hugh find th
Dec 21, 2017 rated it really liked it
A Mortal Likeness by Laura Joh Rowland is a twisty turny historical mystery. This second installment in the Victorian Mystery series easily stands on its own, but I highly recommend book one, The Ripper's Shadow, as well.

Photographer Sarah Bain and her close friend Lord Hugh Staunton are attempting to get their private inquiry business up and running. Their current case involves suspected adultery and while attempting to obtain photographic proof, Sarah and Hugh inadvertently stumble into the mi
Dec 29, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is the second in this Victorian series and I hope there will be more entries. Sarah Bain used to be a photographer but now that has been overshadowed by her investigating endevours along with her partner, Lord Hugh Staunton. In the course of one investigation they stumble across a multiple death connected to the kidnapping of a baby. As they have photographic evidence that may be of help to the baby's family, they present themselves as investigators. Money is tight and this case will give t ...more
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Granddaughter of Chinese and Korean immigrants, Laura Joh Rowland grew up in Michigan and where she graduated with a B.S. in microbiology and a Master of Public Health at the University of Michigan. She currently lives in New Orleans with her husband. She has worked as a chemist, microbiologist, sanitary inspector and quality engineer.

Other books in the series

Victorian Mystery (3 books)
  • The Ripper's Shadow (Victorian Mystery #1)
  • The Hangman's Secret (Victorian Mystery, #3)

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