I was given an ARC of this book. This review may contain spoilers of the first two books.
4 out of 5 stars.
This is the third in the Oona Crate Mystery series. The books are a fun mix of mystery, fantasy, and historical fiction. Set in the 1800’s on a street caught in limbo between earth and faerie, Oona learns of the theft of a carbuncle that can bestow fairy-like powers on the wearer and potentially lead to the gates holding all the horrors of Faerie opening. Fortunately, she has some experiencing solving crimes. Unfortunately, the theft could not come at a worse time as Oona is right in the middle of an important magic project and is also trying to make time to hang out with her friend who works at the library. A clue left at the scene of the crime leads her to believe the theft is not unrelated to her father’s murder, so she must take the case, whether she has time to or not.
If you ever wished a Harry Potter novel solely took place in Diagon Alley, then chances are you are going to adore the world Shawn Thomas Odyssey has set up. It is full of people who accept magic as a reality, but still have to go about the everyday task of living. It is cut off from the normal world, but still guards it from evil magic.
In this addition to the series, we really see Oona starting to grow up, as her attentions towards her male friend become more romantic, and she starts to consider the appeal of having another female in the house. She also starts considering gender equality, as word of the women’s rights movement out in the real world starts filtering in. Oona spends some time considering her future and her place in her world.
I enjoy the weird mishmash of three different genres that these books are composed of, because it ends up being a really unique little world of its own. The combination of interesting plot, world, and character development made this a strong third in this series.