Stoke Newington, 1863: Little Margaret Lovejoy is found brutally murdered in the outhouse of her family’s estate. A few days later, another victim is found on the doorstep of Eurasian courtesan and professional detective Heloise Chancey at her prestigious address. At the same time, Heloise’s mother, Amah Li Leen, must confront events from her past that threaten her present. In a maelstrom of murder and deceit, Heloise is caught up in a crime that reaches into the very heart of her existence.
Fans of Phryne Fisher and Downtown Abbey will love the flamboyant heroines, mouthy servants and bloody murders in the Heloise Chancey Mystery series.
“It’s a pleasure to watch Tjia’s unusual sleuth get mad and get even in a grisly tale with a surprising climax; readers will eagerly await the sequel.” – Kirkus Review
“Heloise Chancey is a marvellous character, a gutsy, flamboyant self-made woman and expert guide to the nether regions of Victorian London.” – Marele Day
Heloise Chancey may be a fictional character living her life in London in the mid 1800s, but she is very much a woman for our times. M.J. Tjia combines this endearing character with the page-turning thrills of a good whodunnit, the rollicking Victorian English read intricately woven with all the colour and flavour of the East.” – Cass Moriarty, Parting Words
“Heloise Chancey is a witty, sexy, resourceful sleuth who refuses to be constrained by the Victorian sensibilities of the time, choosing instead to subvert them across lines of gender and culture. Every quest Heloise sets out upon and every clue she reveals along the way is underpinned by an author determined to apply the same forensic detail to historical accuracy as her protagonist is to solving crimes. M.J. Tjia is masterful at bringing the sights and smells of Victorian London vividly to life in this fast-paced, thrilling and absorbing whodunnit, where nothing and no one is ever as you think.” – Sally Piper, Grace’s Table
M.J. Tjia has a Phd in Creative Writing and Literary Studies (QUT). Her novella The Fish Girl, written under her real name Mirandi Riwoe, won Seizure’s Viva La Novella and was shortlisted for the 2018 Stella Prize. The first book in the Heloise Chancy Mystery series was also longlisted for the 2018 Ned Kelly Awards for Best First Crime.
Tjia was awarded a Fellowship at Varuna, the National Writers’ House in 2014 and has was longlisted for the CWA Debut Dagger and shortlisted for the Josephine Ulrick Short Story Prize, Overland’s Neilma Sidney Short Story Prize and the Luke Bitmead Bursary.