Tuesday, April 21, 2020

A CHILD LOST by Michelle Cox

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Series Title A CHILD LOST (A Henrietta and Inspector Howard Novel #5) by Michelle Cox

Category:  Adult Fiction (18+)

Genre Historical Mystery

Publisher She Writes Press

Release dates:   April 2020

Content Rating: R:
My book is rated R for 2 sex scenes
that are somewhat explicit but which are tastefully done. There is
periodic swearing (not excessive), but no violence.


A spiritualist, an insane asylum, a lost little girl . . .

When Clive, anxious to distract a depressed Henrietta, begs Sergeant
Frank Davis for a case, he is assigned to investigating a seemingly
boring affair: a spiritualist woman operating in an abandoned
schoolhouse on the edge of town who is suspected of robbing people of
their valuables. What begins as an open and shut case becomes more
complicated, however, when Henrietta―much to Clive’s dismay―begins to
believe the spiritualist's strange ramblings.

Meanwhile, Elsie begs Clive and Henrietta to help her and the object of
her budding love, Gunther, locate the whereabouts of one Liesel
Klinkhammer, the German woman Gunther has traveled to America to find
and the mother of the little girl, Anna, whom he has brought along with
him. The search leads them to Dunning Asylum, where they discover some
terrible truths about Liesel. When the child, Anna, is herself
mistakenly admitted to the asylum after an epileptic fit, Clive and
Henrietta return to Dunning to retrieve her. This time, however,
Henrietta begins to suspect that something darker may be happening. When
Clive doesn’t believe her, she decides to take matters into her own
hands . . . with horrifying results.

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My Review:
A Child Lost is the 5th book in the Henrietta and Inspector Howard by Michelle Cox. This is however the first book I have read in this series and also by Michelle Cox. This is a series but each of the books can be read as a stand alone. I had no problem at all following along. The series is set in the 1930's in Chicago, Illinois. There is mystery, suspense, and twists and turns all through the book. This book actually has 2 mysteries to solve in it. Henrietta and Clive are a pair of Private Detectives, and this series follows their investigations. 

At the beginning of the book Gunther a German Immigrant is telling Elsie his story of how he came to America and how he has a small girl named Anna with him. It is a very sad story of how Anna's mother lived in the boarding house Gunther's Mother and him ran to make ends meet after his passing. Shortly after Liesel Klinkhammer moved in they hear strange noises coming from Liesel's room only to find out she is giving birth, no one knew she was pregnant. Shortly after the birth they find out that Liesel has run off to America chasing the man she is in love with and who also happens to be the Father of her baby. After receiving a letter a few years later Gunther and his mother decide to come to America to look for Liesel. 

Henrietta is suffering a sever bout of depression after a miscarriage and Clive decides that what they need is a new case to help take her mind off her grief. Clive goes to Sergeant Frank Davis asking for a case, any case. Sergeant Davis tells him about a spiritualist woman that is suspected of stealing from people. Although the case doesn't sound like it will be big or even hard they will be in for a shock. 

Elsie approaches Clive and Henrietta to help her and Gunther look for Liesel Klinkhammer. Their search ends up leading them to an asylum. Little Anna who has epilepsy ends up being admitted to the Asylum as well. When Clive and Henrietta go back to get Anna Henrietta believes there is something going on there and takes it upon herself to find out just what that is. 

Both of the investigations in this book look to be open and shut until they start investigating and nothing turns out to be what they seem. 


Michelle Cox is the author of the multiple award-winning Henrietta and
Inspector Howard series as well as "Novel Notes of Local Lore," a weekly
blog dedicated to Chicago's forgotten residents. She suspects she may
have once lived in the 1930s and, having yet to discover a handy time
machine lying around, has resorted to writing about the era as a way of
getting herself back there. Coincidentally, her books have been praised
by Kirkus, Library Journal, Publishers Weekly, Booklist and many others,
so she might be on to something. Unbeknownst to most, Michelle hoards
board games she doesn't have time to play and is, not surprisingly,
addicted to period dramas and big band music. Also marmalade.

Connect with the Author:

website ~ facebook ~twitter ~ instagram ~ goodreads

Author Interview #2 for T’s Stuff

1.  What attracts you to the 1930s?
Well, to be honest, I’ve always preferred the 1940s because of the war and the music and the way people bonded together to fight this one common enemy, but in writing and researching these books, I’ve kind of fallen in love with the 1930s, too. It’s really such a time of the “haves” and the “have-nots,” which the books try to explore, and there are so many rich stories from that era between the wars, too. People were banding together more often than not to fight poverty, even as the old aristocracy was beginning to crumble. It’s a fascinating time.

2. Where do you stand in the debate about historical accuracy over the story telling? 

Great question! Readers always comment, saying that the details in my books are amazing and that they feel like they’re really there or that they’re watching a movie. Everyone assumes I’ve done a ton of research. In truth, I don’t. Unless you want to count my life leading up to this point as a form or research in that I’ve always been attracted to stories of the past and have read hundreds of classic novels. I think some of those details subconsciously stuck in my head.

That’s not to say I don’t do any research, but I do it after the fact. So if I want to describe Henrietta’s evening gown or the car Clive is driving, I just type XXXX while I’m writing and go back and fill it in later. This allows me to just get the story out, to let it flow without getting hung up on details. And doing it this way, I think, is a way to avoid info dump that so many novelists fall into. It’s important to be accurate to a certain extent. After all, this is fiction.

3.  You have a blog—Novel Notes of Local Lore.  Tell us about that.
I used to work at a nursing home on Chicago’s NW side where I collected more stories than I can ever, ever use. So, I decided to turn them into a blog. Each week I select a different “forgotten Chicago resident” and showcase their story. The blog has become wildly popular somehow and has its own little audience separate from the books. People love these stories, and it gives me great pleasure to share them with the world.

4. What’s your favorite genre to read?

Definitely historical fiction.  I love to escape into another world.  

5. What was the first historical novel you read? 
I can’t say for sure, but it was probably The Girl by Catherine Cookson. I was much too young for something that racy, but I found it on my mom’s shelf and couldn’t help my curiosity. I read the first few pages, and then devoured it. I went on to read all of her books, and I think Cookson has most definitely had a strong influence on my own writing in terms of creating the atmospheric saga.


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1 comment:

  1. Thank you so very much for this awesome review, Teresa! I'm thrilled that you enjoyed the book. Thanks for sharing it on your blog!