Suffragettes. Dody's sister Florence is a suffragette becoming further embroiled in the militant movement. There's riots, force feedings, passion for the cause, foiled attempts to make a statement...
A rule-breaking heroine. It's pre 1910 and we have a lady medical examiner. She even works at a women's clinic free just to get experience because back then hardly a soul would hire a woman doctor. She's tough and compassionate at the same time.
Mystery. What was supposed to be a peaceful Votes for Women parade goes awry when police begin beating up the ladies. But when one society woman ends up dead, it appears there's a cover up and Dody is placed in the middle of it in more ways than one. Her sister could be involved somehow and while Florence accuses her of taking the police's side, the police are distrustful of her.
Mild romance. With Police Inspector Pike. It doesn't leap off the page. It's barely worth mentioning, rather giving us hints of things to come and I was totally fine with this. I love that we have a novel here that doesn't make it seem as though us women do nothing but sit around and pine for men and wish for love.
I found this very well written, decently paced, and while I was almost able to tell whodunit, I wasn't certain or 100%. I only had a vague idea and I like that. I'll be reading the rest of the series. I foresee lots of tension coming between Pike and Dody, Dody and her mentor/another doctor, and Dody with the police force, period. I also think that thanks to Florence, we'll be seeing a lot of women's rights issues in this series. This combination makes a winner for me.
From her Gladstone bag she removed the velvet pouch containing her own smoking paraphernalia. Five pairs of eyes converged on her as she expertly packed her clap pipe, swiped the match across the rough wall, and coaxed the tobacco to a gentle glow.
"How many bodies are there, Superintendent?" she asked between puffs.
Shepherd was staring at her in undisguised disbelief. A most unbecoming habit in a lady, she could imagine him saying to his colleagues later in the station house. But what did he expect her to use to combat the stench--lavender water?
I obtained this via paperback swap.