In Scholarly Pursuits, the sixth full-length novel in the USA Today best-selling Victorian San Francisco mystery series, Locke explores life on the University of California: Berkeley campus in 1881, where Laura and her friends face the remarkably modern problems of fraternity hazings, fraught romantic relationships, and fractious faculty politics.
While Annie and Nate Dawson and friends and family in the O’Farrell Street boardinghouse await a blessed event, Laura Dawson finds herself investigating why a young Berkeley student dropped out of school in the fall of 1880.
No one, including her friend Seth Timmons, thinks this is a good idea, since she is juggling a full course load with a part-time job, but she can’t let the question of what happened to her friend go unanswered. Not when it means that other young women might be in danger.
This cozy historical mystery of romantic suspense is set in the period immediately after the fifth book in the series, Pilfered Promises, and two novellas, Kathleen Catches a Killer and Dandy Delivers. However, it can be read as a stand-alone.
West is a man with a tarnished past. No apologies, no excuses. However, from the moment he meets Phoebe, West is consumed by irresistible desire...not to mention the bitter awareness that a woman like her is far out of his reach. What West doesn’t bargain on is that Phoebe is no straitlaced aristocratic lady. She’s the daughter of a strong-willed wallflower who long ago eloped with Sebastian, Lord St. Vincent—the most devilishly wicked rake in England.
Before long, Phoebe sets out to seduce the man who has awakened her fiery nature and shown her unimaginable pleasure. Will their overwhelming passion be enough to overcome the obstacles of the past?
Only the devil’s daughter knows…
In this sequel to Maids of Misfortune, it is the fall of 1879, and when the young San Francisco widow, Annie Fuller, is asked to investigate a fraudulent trance medium, she comes to a troubling realization. Despite Annie’s growing financial success as the clairvoyant Madam Sibyl, she feels increasingly guilty about the fact she doesn't believe in the astrology and palmistry her clients think are the basis for her advice.
Kathleen Hennessey, Annie’s young maid, has a plan. Just like the Pinkerton detectives she has read about in the dime novels, she is determined to assist her mistress in her investigations.
Nate Dawson, up-and-coming San Francisco lawyer, faces a dilemma. He wants to marry the unconventional Annie Fuller, but he doesn't feel he can reveal his true feelings until he has a way to make enough money to support her.
With Kathleen and Nate Dawson’s help, Annie delves into the intriguing world of 19th century spiritualism, encountering true believers and naïve dupes, clever frauds and unexplained supernatural phenomena, and she soon finds there are as many secrets as there are spirits swirling around the séance table. Some of those secrets will threaten the foundation of her career as Madam Sibyl and the future of her relationship with Nate Dawson, and, in time, they will threaten her very life itself.
In this second historical mystery in Locke's USA Today bestselling cozy Victorian San Francisco mystery series, readers will find the same combination of romance, mystery, and suspense they found in Maids of Misfortune. Uneasy Spirits is followed by Bloody Lessons, Deadly Proof, and Pilfered Promises. Locke’s shorter works, found in Victorian San Francisco Stories and Victorian San Francisco Novellas, feature minor characters from the series.
A notorious rakehell with a stable of fabulous Thoroughbreds and a lady on a quest to locate such horses must negotiate personal minefields to forge a greatly desired alliance—one someone is prepared to murder to prevent.
Prudence Cynster has turned her back on husband hunting in favor of horse hunting. As the head of the breeding program underpinning the success of the Cynster racing stables, she’s on a quest to acquire the necessary horses to refresh the stable’s breeding stock.
On his estranged father’s death, Deaglan Fitzgerald, now Earl of Glengarah, left London and the hedonistic life of a wealthy, wellborn rake and returned to Glengarah Castle determined to rectify the harm caused by his father’s neglect. Driven by guilt that he hadn’t been there to protect his people during the Great Famine, Deaglan holds against the lure of his father’s extensive collection of horses and, leaving the stable to the care of his brother, Felix, devotes himself to returning the estate to prosperity.
Deaglan had fallen out with his father and been exiled from Glengarah over his drive to have the horses pay their way. Knowing Deaglan’s wishes and that restoration of the estate is almost complete, Felix writes to the premier Thoroughbred breeding program in the British Isles to test their interest in the Glengarah horses.
On receiving a letter describing exactly the type of horses she’s seeking, Pru overrides her family’s reluctance and sets out for Ireland’s west coast to visit the now-reclusive wicked Earl of Glengarah. Yet her only interest is in his horses, which she cannot wait to see.
When Felix tells Deaglan that a P. H. Cynster is about to arrive to assess the horses with a view to a breeding arrangement, Deaglan can only be grateful. But then P. H. Cynster turns out to be a lady, one utterly unlike any other he’s ever met.
Yet they are who they are, and both understand their world. They battle their instincts and attempt to keep their interactions businesslike, but the sparks are incandescent and inevitably ignite a sexual blaze that consumes them both—and opens their eyes.
But before they can find their way to their now-desired goal, first one accident, then another distracts them. Someone, it seems, doesn’t want them to strike a deal. Who? Why?
They need to find out before whoever it is resorts to the ultimate sanction.
A historical romance with neo-Gothic overtones, set in the west of Ireland. A Cynster Next Generation novel—a full-length historical romance of 125,000 words.
Praise for the works of Stephanie Laurens
“Stephanie Laurens’ heroines are marvelous tributes to Georgette Heyer: feisty and strong.” Cathy Kelly
“Stephanie Laurens never fails to entertain and charm her readers with vibrant plots, snappy dialogue, and unforgettable characters.”Historical Romance Reviews.
“Stephanie Laurens plays into readers’ fantasies like a master and claims their hearts time and again.” Romantic Times Magazine
In Bloody Lessons, the third book in the bestselling Victorian San Francisco mystery series, it's the winter of 1880, and the public school teachers of San Francisco are under attack: their salaries slashed and their competency and morals questioned in a series of poison pen letters.
Annie Fuller, the reluctant clairvoyant, has been called in to investigate by Nate Dawson, her lawyer beau, and the case becomes personal when they discover that Nate's sister Laura may be one of the teachers being targeted.
In this historical mystery, readers will find the same blend of a cozy mystery and romantic suspense that they found in Locke’s Maids of Misfortune and Uneasy Spirits. However, if new to this series, they will still enjoy spending time with the lively residents of Annie Fuller's O’Farrell Street boardinghouse and visiting San Francisco when Golden Gate Park was filled with horse-drawn carriages, politics were controlled by saloon-keepers, and kisses were stolen under gaslight.
Bloody Lessons is followed by Deadly Proof, and Pilfered Promises, and Locke’s shorter works, found in Victorian San Francisco Stories and Victorian San Francisco Novellas, feature minor characters from the series.