Review: Death, Diamonds, and Deception by Rosemary Simpson

Print Length: 304 pages
Publisher: Kensington Publishing (November 24, 2020)

From  Fall 1889: Lady Rotherton has arrived from London intent on chaperoning her niece Prudence through a New York social season to find a suitable husband. It's certainly not her niece's devilishly handsome partner in Hunter and MacKenzie Investigative Law. Aunt Gillian's eye for eligible suitors is surpassed only by her ability to discern genuine gems from nearly flawless fakes. At the Assembly Ball at Delmonico's, she effortlessly determines that the stones in the spectacular diamond waterfall necklace adorning the neck of the wife of banker William De Vries are fake.

Insisting on absolute discretion to avoid scandal, the banker employs Prudence and Geoffrey to recover the stolen diamonds pried out of their settings--priceless stones acquired by Tiffany, originally purchased for Marie Antoinette. Their search for a possible fence rapidly leads to a dead end: a jeweler brutally killed in his shop during an apparent theft.

The jeweler's murder is only the first in a string of mysterious deaths, as Prudence and Geoffrey pursue their elusive quarry. But the clues keep leading back to duplicity on the part of the De Vries family, who, it turns out, have a great deal to hide...


My Rating: 3 stars out of 5

This story did not lack in details. Which unfortunately, made it hard for me to stay interested. Sometimes, less is more especially when you have to wade through pages of setting and unnecessary dialogue to get to anything that really moves the story along. Due to this, I found myself skimming pages here and there when things were being mentioned that weren't integral to the plot. Now don't get me wrong, this was an intriguing premise, and I understand just how hard it can be to get any solid leads when conducting an investigation (especially when some people are less than forthcoming), but this one just went above and beyond.  

Not only did the scenes jump from one person and place to another quickly becoming annoying and off-putting to me as a reader, but the sheer number of players in this game added to the overall confusion. Eventually, one name blurred into then next until (with the exception of the women) I lost track of who was who. 

Speaking of the females of this novel, I thoroughly enjoyed both Prudence and her Aunt. Prudence for turning her back (more or less) on what was expected of her in order to chase her own desires, and her Aunt for being the kind of no-holds-barred woman that demands answers while commanding respect. 

Sadly however, even as strong as those two were, they weren't enough to save this novel. Especially when the author chose to end it not only seemingly on a cliff-hanger in regards to one plot-line, but also chose to give some of the other characters wholly unfulfilling endings (where she chose to give them endings at all). After everything I felt like it was a slap in the face to the reader with the way things were done. 

All things considered, I may give this author another chance down the road. 

DISCLAIMER: I received a complimentary copy of this novel from Amazon First Reads. This has not affected my review in any way. All thoughts and opinions expressed in this review are 100% my own.

                     Death, Diamonds and Deception is available from

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