City of Fortune is the 6th Counterfeit Lady mystery by Victoria Thompson. Released 6th Dec 2022 by Penguin Random House on their Berkley imprint, it's 320 pages and is available in hardcover, audio, and ebook formats. It's worth noting that the ebook format has a handy interactive table of contents as well as interactive links. I've really become enamored of ebooks with interactive formats lately.
Protagonist Elizabeth is a sort of "equalizer" who is a mostly reformed con-woman who only uses her skills for good these days. She's setting into married life with her ever-honest paragon of a husband, attorney Gideon to provide an air of respectability.
This story takes place around horses and the racing milieu is central to the plot. After a dreadful accident at the racetrack, Elizabeth is determined to get to the bottom of what's happening and find out who's responsible, and at the same time not have her cover blown as a counterfeit socialite.
The story does work well enough as a standalone and the mystery is self contained in this volume, although the characters have developed over the course of the series and some interactions will be spoiled by reading them out of order (such as Elizabeth and Gideon's marriage). The dialogue is sometimes a tiny bit stilted, but I believe that's a conscious decision for period verisimilitude on the part of the author. The author is additionally very good at making the horse racing setting believable and immersive.
Four stars. With 6 books extant in the series, it would be a good choice for a binge (or buddy) read. Definitely one for fans of historical mysteries with strong feisty female characters.
Disclosure: I received an ARC at no cost from the author/publisher for review purposes.
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