The story begins at the gravesite of recently deceased Miss Nell Harbottle, on a windy day in June, in the year 1887. Here, Veronica Speedwell, a most unique, extremely intelligent, inquisitive and independent woman is pondering her first adventure in life while being completely free. Miss Speedwell feels that with the passing of the last person that she has considered family, her life will now begin. What happens next in this Victorian tale of woven mysteries is the first of many clues that direct Veronica to uncover her shrouded beginnings. Not long into her adventure she meets a handsome scientist called Stoker. With his help she is able to unravel her enigmatic birth and all of its surrounding secrets.
This is a thoroughly enjoyable book. The settings are meticulously described to ensure the reader feels as they are back in 1887. The dialogue, the daily routines, the clothing and the historic events have obviously been carefully researched by the author. I give this a strong 4 ½ stars.
I did have a slight problem with the fact that the main character is portrayed as being very intelligent, a scientist herself actually, but she does not question the fact that her aunts had no source of income and moved from town to town on a regular basis. She never asked, wondered or questioned about this all of the time she was growing up. This alone seems to be completely out of sync with her character.