Writing is fine. Story is okay. Nothing spectacular.
What annoys me to no end is Mary and James.
Their relationship appears to be all about the physical. They argue and bicker and then kiss passionately and get interrupted before they can do much more.
No meaningful conversations. Or, at the very least, not very many where they aren't yelling at each other. No signs that they really care
for one another. It's all about how hot Mary gets underneath the petticoats whenever James is around and James seems to think, no joke, that their "animalistic passion" is a good thing and there's no problems there.
That's not love. It never will be, no matter how much you shove it in our face or tell us it is.
So that was mainly my problem with this one.
Also, did we really need the almost rape scene where it shows that Mary is quick-witted and smart by talking
her way of it? Or when Mary almost lets Prince Albert take her in a manly fashion, all to gain information and not get sacked? To Mary's credit, she backed out, just in time, I might add, but it felt like it was thrown in there to make it gritter or something like that.
Or Mary helping Amy and Jones get it on, even though I'm pretty sure she knew that Jones had not the right intentions. But, it worked out with Mary's plan, so why not?
Personally, if Lee had focused completely on the mystery and characterization aspect, I would be one happy lady. But she didn't, so I'm not.
But I did like Mary's father being in the story and her relationship with him. That was well done.
And the ending was perfectly satisfactory. There was no need for a 4th book. James and Mary, together, solving mysteries. A perfectly fine and acceptable ending. But no.
*crosses Rivals in the City
off TBR list*