... a clever locked-room mystery, and the author keeps us on our toes ... As always, the mystery is clever and well-executed, and I really enjoyed watching ‘the gang’ – Charlotte, Lord Ingram, Mrs. Watson and Penelope – all working together and playing off one another. Even better is the amount of time that Charlotte and Lord Ingram spend together; I know, I know, these are mainly historical mysteries, but Ms. Thomas injected so much delicious sexual tension and palpable longing between the couple right from the first book that I – along with many fans, I’m sure –have been eagerly lapping up even the tiniest signs of romantic attachment between them! ... Thomas deftly makes some very pertinent points about societal injustice in the Victorian era without resorting to lengthy polemics or info-dumps ... I have to admit that I’m getting a little bit frustrated with the Moriarty plotline in the sense that after five books, I still have very little idea what he’s up to in the way of a Master Plan. He’s this nebulous baddie pulling strings somewhere in the wings, and okay, so he’s a master criminal with his finger in many dastardly pies, but even though, at the end of this book, Lord Ingram warns Charlotte that Moriarty must consider her an enemy now, he’s not inspiring the same sense of dread in me that he obviously is in the characters. Again, perhaps that’s my fault and I’ve missed (or forgotten) something important. Even so, Murder on Cold Street is a readable, clever and compelling addition to the series and should definitely be on any historical mystery fan’s Wish List.
The brilliant characterizations complement this smart and clever murder mystery that will keep readers guessing to the very end ... This magnificent locked-room case is a dazzling holiday gift for fans of the series.
Thomas masterfully handles all the ins and outs of the mystery while layering the story with suspense and intrigue to keep readers guessing. There’s even some of Thomas’ trademark romance in Cold Street, as Holmes and her longtime beau Lord Ingram move closer emotionally.
Thomas presents another engaging entry in her Lady Sherlock series ... While the case itself is intriguing, it is the portrayal of the societal expectations and restrictions faced by women in Victorian times, along with Charlotte’s ingenuity in surmounting these obstacles, that makes this such a winning read.
The novel is sure-footed, its puzzle the most tightly structured and enjoyable of the whodunits in Thomas’ series about the gender-swapped sleuth. As the group questions witnesses and ferrets out motives of potential suspects, the narrative changes rapidly from scene to scene around wintry London and from memory to memory. The telling shifts of speakers’ bodies punctuate conversations, distilling emotions and speech into physicality. The novel also amplifies the series’ theme of the assaults and challenges women face in a world that disadvantages them personally and professionally. More notably, it foregrounds the actions of numerous women to do so. Each is richly drawn, with her own way of resisting societal limitations regarding sex, ethnicity, and class. Holmes herself is as adept at crime-solving as ever, but when it comes to erotic love, she is still considering the ramifications of getting what she has desired for years ... With an increasingly beloved detective crew, this Victorian mystery offers thrills and sharp insights into human behavior.