One dead politician, one runaway prostitute, and a missing briefcase is a recipe for intrigue and espionage. India Black is the madam of Lotus House. While her unconventional business is successful, a high-ranking official dying on the premises could ruin her. And that's just what happens. Sir Archibald "Bowser" Latham goes toes-up in the arms of Arabella, one of India's new girls. With some quick thinking, India works to relieve herself of this pesky little problem. Unfortunately, a government agent, Mr French, catches her in the act of removing the body. He plans to look the other way if she brings him the case in Bowser's possession. A thorough search and all India finds is that the case, and the girl, are gone.
Now India's country needs her particular skills to retrieve the contents of the case. While she was reluctant in the beginning (threats were made), the thrill of chasing Russian spies all over England in the company of French has its charms.
India Black had me at the first sentence:
My name is India Black. I am a whore.
Well now, that's some way to start a book! It's blunt and to the point, much like India herself. India knows what she is and isn't ashamed of it. "It's a living" could be her catch phrase. She's sharp and witty and fearless. She knows being a madam is a tough business but it's her business and she isn't beholden to anyone. That is until the Prime Minister needs her. Of course, India isn't a woman to shy away from adventure and French is often impressed by her quick thinking and evasive actions.
Aw yes, French. International Man of Mystery. A man without a first name, at least not one he's revealing to India or anyone else. He keeps himself to himself, just like India. It would be easier to pry teeth out of these two than secrets. Very intriguing, no? The are quite a duo, like Emma Peel and John Steed of The Avengers.
I guess you can tell that I loved India Black. It's very well written. I loved the witticisms of India; I could fill this page with quotes that made me laugh out loud. I loved the dialogue between her and the others characters. Those characters range from the bottom of London society (Vincent, Rowena) to the office of the Prime Minister, all with their own quirks. I loved the action and the espionage: carriage chases and scaling buildings.
Even though India hangs up her spy hat at the end of the book, she does hint that she and French had many more adventures. I hope the series continues!
If you're in the mood for something fun, a little different, and don't mind rompish behaviour, you'll enjoy India Black.
Note: The book is called A Madam of Espionage Mystery. I thought this was a bit misleading as there isn't much of a mystery. Maybe the other books in the series will be mysteries. I dunno.
For more information on Carol K Carr, please visit her website.
My thanks to Premier Virtual Author Tours for the opportunity to be part of the India Black tour. See their site for the full tour schedule.
****Please visit tomorrow for a guest post from the author and a giveaway****