Author: Sheila Connolly
Publisher: Minotaur Books
Source: St. Martin’s Press ( Netgalley )
Goodreads: From New York Times bestselling author Sheila Connolly, The Secret Staircase is the third Victorian Village Mystery, which finds Kate Hamilton discovering a long-dead body in a hidden staircase.
Kate Hamilton is feeling good about her plans to recreate Asheboro, Maryland as the Victorian village it once was. The town is finally on her side, and the finances are coming together.
Kate’s first goal is to renovate the Barton Mansion on the outskirts of town. Luckily, it’s been well maintained in the century since the wealthy Henry Barton lived and died there. The only substantial change she’s planning is to update the original kitchen so that it can be used to cater events in the building. But when the contractor gets started, he discovers a hidden staircase that had been walled in years earlier. And as Kate’s luck would have it, in the stairwell is a body.
After her initial shock wears off, Kate is relieved when the autopsy reveals that the man had died around 1880. Unfortunately, it also reveals that his was not a natural death—he was murdered. And serious questions remain: who was he and what was he doing there?
Kate begins a hunt to identify the man and figure out what he was doing at the Barton Mansion. But when a second body is found—this time from the present day—Kate realizes that real dangers lie in digging up the past…
Ope’s Opinion: This cozy mystery is the third in a series. This is the first one of this series I have read. The first few chapters felt like it was catching people like me caught up on what had previously happened in the other books.
I know this is a mystery, not a romance, but I felt like the relationship with Ryan didn’t move forward. They both ( Kate and Ryan ) don’t seem to care if they spent time together or not. I also felt like renovations didn’t make much progress.
The mystery was easy and fun to follow with a lot of history add in. I enjoyed it.