City of Lies by Victoria Thompson

November 6th, 2017 Kimberly Review 22 Comments

6th Nov
City of Lies by Victoria Thompson
City of Lies
by Victoria Thompson
Series: Counterfeit Lady #1
Genres: Historical Fiction
Source: Publisher
Purchase*: Amazon *affiliate
Rating: One StarOne StarOne StarOne Star

Elizabeth Miles scours 1920’s Washington, D.C. for a killer in the first Counterfeit Lady novel from the author of the New York Times bestselling Gaslight mysteries.

Every woman plays a part—but some are more dangerous than others…

Like most women, Elizabeth Miles assumes many roles; unlike most, hers have made her a woman on the run. Living on the edge of society, Elizabeth uses her guile to relieve so-called respectable men of their ill-gotten gains. But brutal and greedy entrepreneur Oscar Thornton is out for blood. He’s lost a great deal of money and is not going to forgive a woman for outwitting him. With his thugs hot on her trail, Elizabeth seizes the moment to blend in with a group of women who have an agenda of their own.

She never expects to like or understand these privileged women, but she soon comes to respect their intentions, forming an unlikely bond with the wealthy matriarch of the group whose son Gabriel is the rarest of species—an honest man in a dishonest world. She knows she’s playing a risky game, and her deception could be revealed at any moment, possibly even by sharp-eyed Gabriel. Nor has she been forgotten by Thornton, who’s biding his time within this gilded orbit, waiting to strike. Elizabeth must draw on her wits and every last ounce of courage she possesses to keep her new life from being cut short by this vicious shadow from her past.

Diverse historical ROMANCE SUSPENSE

I have long wanted to try Victoria Thompson’s Gaslight Mystery series, but at twenty-one books, I kept putting it off. When I saw she was beginning a new series, The Counterfeit Lady, and read the synopsis for City of Lies, I knew it was time.  City of Lies delivered an addictive tale with a quick-thinking grifter who soon finds herself a part of history as she tries to outwit a killer.

City of Lies set in the 1920s both in Washington and New York home to the Four Hundred, Thompson shares an engaging tale about a woman who’s running a grift with her brother. When things go terribly wrong she is forced to hide among a group of rallying female suffragists. The tale that unfolds was clever and engaging. So much so that I finished the tale in just two sitting.

Thompson weaves historical facts, friendship, LGBT issues, women’s rights and a dash of romance into this suspenseful tale. In the author’s notes, Thompson describes how some of the events our heroine Elizabeth Miles, Anna and others suffered through, actually happened during the Women’s Movement of the 1920s. Of course, she took some liberties, but I love when actual events are woven into a tale. It gave an air of authenticity and notched up the suspense aspects.

Elizabeth is such a lively character, and I found myself holding my breath with the situations she found herself in. Her cleverness and ability to change the outcome of her circumstances kept me flipping the pages. Thompson made Elizabeth’s story of escaping near death to befriending Anna seem genuine. I liked Anna, her brother, and mother and a large part of the scenes are spent in their home.  Anna wants her life to matter, doesn’t fancy marriage and finds herself drawn to Elizabeth. I loved the added threads concerning her and appreciated how the author addressed them particularly the LGBT issue. In the 1920s loving, someone of the same sex was never discussed despite the fact that homosexuality existed. The frank conversation and support were refreshing.

We are treated to a romance, well several actually. I loved seeing Elizabeth tackle these moments, use them to her advantage and become flounder entirely by others. The tale was balanced with the suspense thread at the center, and romantic elements threaded through the story. These features allowed for character growth, suspense and delightful moments to make your heart pitter-patter. Will Elizabeth escape or end up at the mercy of the villain? Who will get their heart-broken? It was all so engaging.

City of Lies is perfect for fans of historical fiction, the 1920s, strong, stubborn and smart protagonists. The suspense angle, Griffing, and twists will keep the reader engaged and leave them eager for the next Counterfeit Lady novel.

City of Lies by Victoria Thompson delivered an engaging historical fiction with suspense Click To Tweet


About Victoria Thompson

Victoria Thompson

Victoria Thompson is the author of the Edgar® and Agatha nominated Gaslight Mystery series. She was nominated for an Edgar Allen Poe Award from Mystery Writers of America in 2001, and in 2012 she received a Career Achievement Award in Mystery Writing from RT Magazine. Her last five books were nominated for an Agatha Award. She also contributed to the award-winning writing textbook MANY GENRES/ONE CRAFT and authored a short story for the anthology, SHERLOCK HOLMES IN AMERICA. In her previous life, Victoria Thompson was the bestselling author of twenty historical romances. She earned her Master of Fine Arts degree in Writing Popular Fiction from Seton Hill University in 2012, where she has been a mentor and lecturer for 16 years.

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About Kimberly
Kimberly is a coffee loving book addict who reads and listens to fictional stories in all genres. Whovian, Ravenclaw and Howler. She owns and manages Caffeinated PR. The coffee is always on and she is ready to chat. Find @kimbacaffeinate on Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

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22 Responses to “City of Lies by Victoria Thompson”

  1. Lorna

    Sounds great! I added it to my Kindle wish list in hopes that the price(12.99) goes down. It does happen. Thanks for sharing, you sold me!

  2. Katherine @ I Wish I Lived in a Library

    I really enjoyed this too! I definitely appreciated her balance of characters and I really loved Elizabeth though I’m not sure I’d want to be friends with her. It seems dangerous! I’m really curious to see where Thompson goes with the series from this book. I saw lots of #1 so I’m hoping that means there will be more!

  3. Bookworm Brandee

    I’m glad I’m not the only one to shy away from a series when there are so many books in it. So intimidating. 😉 But this one sounds great and like a wonderful place to start with Thompson. I love it when actual events are woven into a story. It does add to the historical authenticity. And I like that LGBT issues are touched on in an historical. Plus the story and characters sound really exciting! Fab review, Kimberly!

  4. Lily

    quiet a lot is packaged into this book, but seems like a great beginning to a new series. I got it in the mail the other day so, kind of excited now

  5. Jenea's Book Obsession

    I absolutely adore this era of time and Elizabeth sounds amazing. I wanted to read this when I first came across it a while back, but I want to even more now after reading your review. Wonderful review Kim!

  6. Barb (boxermommyreads)

    I planned on reading this one this weekend but was in a funk and grabbed The Rules of Magic instead. It was a lovely read but now I’ll have to put this one off until later because I will be starting HoHoHoRAT Wednesday! Great review and glad you liked this one.

  7. Stormi Johnson

    This was okay but not what I was expecting since her other series which I love is a great mystery series and this one said she scours the city for a murder which is not really true so I thought it was a mystery and got a historical romance which was okay but not what I wanted. 🙁

  8. Debbie Haupt

    Oh you’ve convinced me Kim and I totally know where you’re coming from about starting a long running series you know I recently started the Darynda Jones series. Thanks

  9. Nina

    This cover is freaking fantastic! If I saw this book on the bookshelves, I would probably buy it in a heartbeat.

  10. Nick

    I don’t think I’ve heard of this author, but this sounds amazing, I love that it explores all these issues in a historical setting. And bonus, that cover is gorgeous!
    Lovely review, Kim!

  11. kindlemom1

    This one is definitely right up my alley lately. I’ve been so into historicals and mysteries so win win for me. I’m adding this to my pile now Kim.

  12. Ailyn

    the story and review looks very enticing, but what’s the with the cover? Is she running or lifting her leg? because I only see one foot… and an incredibly short skirt…