Nell Sweeney, a young Irish-born governess in post-Civil War Boston, may not have much, but she does possess both a keen mind and a brave heart. As governess to the wealthy Hewitt family, she finds plenty of opportunities to use both - especially when the seamy side of society shows itself.
The lowborn Fallons come to Viola Hewitt with a desperate plea for help. Their wayward daughter, Bridget, a pretty young employee of Hewitt Mills and Dye Works, hasn’t been seen for days. Mrs. Fallon, unwilling to believe that Bridget would just run off without a word, fears that she’s come to a bad end - possibly at the hands of her ex-con lover. Viola, confined to a wheelchair, enlists Nell to locate the missing mill girl. Working with Viola’s black sheep son, Will, Nell uncovers a web of schemes and greed and dark obsession - and what she knows may just be the death of her.
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An all time fave in a whole new way
The entire series serves up opulent historical accuracy in a way that's fresh and light--never oppressively text-book-ish. And I love the chemistry between Will and Nell. It's a taut, exciting relationship between two characters with so many wonderful layers.
Leigh Ryan is a spot on match for Nell Sweeney. A really lovely fit. The fear with a well loved book is that the narrator won't do the character justice, but Ryan gets Nell just right. I'm also partial to her portrayal of Gracie. The performance is so accurate, you forget you're not listening to a real child.
Fierce Characters, with an Enticing story!
Gripping. Intelligent. Heart-pounding.
Without giving too much away (It is a SHOCKER!) I'll say that while the whole story captivated me, the END really had me on the edge of my seat. What a thrilling conclusion, I felt like I was right there with Nell.
Nell Sweeney is a wonderful, strong female lead - which isn't always the case in historical fiction. Leigh Ryan seems very adept at capturing all of Nell's highs and lows she goes through during Mill Town. That's not to say that her other characters weren't equally fleshed out. I was surprised at some points to remember the same person was doing all those voices!
More like shriek! (well, almost) It really made me jump at the end!
I enjoyed the first book in the series, Still Life with Murder, and I even more so loved Murder in a Mill Town. I am simply in love with the series, and I fully recommend these books to all my audio nut friends. Can't wait for the third!
- Ora "Proud book snob"