Why Kings Confess is book #9 in the Sebastian St Cyr series by C S Harris. The series are terrific period mysteries set in England during the early 1800s. Sebastian, known by title as Viscount Devlin, is a well to do aristocrat who finds himself pulled into solving murders by happenstance.
A French delegation is in London seeking to help negotiate a peace between England and France, a peace that may keep Napoleon in power. Only there is also, in exile, the remaining royal family of France in London who have illusions of once again taking the throne.
When one of the delegation is found murdered, his heart cut out, a plot thickens. Is the delegation under attack? Are the remaining royals of the butchered French King seeking revenge? Or can it be something much simpler.
Incredible characters flush out the setting that Harris so richly creates.
“…When Hero Devlin was twelve years old, she came to three life altering conclusions. There were just as many stupid men as stupid women in the world-if not more, she would never, ever hide her own intelligence or knowledge in a craven attempt to conform to her society’s expectations and prejudices, and as long as England’s laws gave a husband virtually the same powers over his wife as those exercised by slave owners over slaves, Hero herself would never marry…”
Sebastian, his wife Hero, his friend Gibson set out to find the killer and the reasons why the murder of a young French doctor on English soil may reach back to the mysteries surround the death or disappearance of the child Prince of France. The Dauphin.
Harris weaves her mystery well, embodying it with lush settings and historical accuracies. Devlin and Hero are a formidable pair, as out of time in their world as the world is with them.
A good mystery and a very good read.