When the editor of The Weekly Gazette is killed, controversial journalist and ink magician Oscar Barratt asks India and Matt to investigate. As the recipient of threatening letters written on magic paper, he believes he was the intended target. With suspects ranging from Oscar's brother to guild masters and London's elite, India and Matt have a lot of investigating to do.
But the more they dig, the more dark secrets they uncover. Secrets that involve blackmail and an exclusive club of magic collectors who want to preserve the value of their collections. When one of the secrets can give India and Matt the future they desire, will they give in to blackmail or sacrifice their happiness?
The king's magnificent palace was built in a matter of weeks. No one saw the builders, no villagers are allowed beyond the gilded gate, and only one servant has ever left. The haunted look in her eyes as she was recaptured by the palace guards is something Josie, daughter of the village doctor, has never forgotten.
For Josie, the palace is a mystery that grows more intriguing after she meets the captain of the guards, a man known only as Hammer, as mysterious and captivating as the palace itself. Whispers of magic fuel Josie's desire to uncover the truth, but an ordinary girl like her can only dream of ever being invited inside.
When the king decides to take a wife from among the eligible daughters of the noble families, the palace gates are finally thrown open and the kingdom's elite pour in. In a court where old rivalries and new jealousies collide, the king's favorite is poisoned and the doctor is summoned. As her father's assistant, Josie finally sees inside the lavish walls, but she soon learns the palace won't surrender its secrets easily, for not a single resident, from the lowest servant to the king himself, has a memory from before the palace existed.
In the search for the truth, Josie is drawn deeper into danger, and the answers she seeks might shake the very foundations of the kingdom.
When an apprentice from the Mapmakers' Guild goes missing, Matt and India are employed to find him. Going undercover as a married couple, they discover that not everyone at the guild is what they seem, and the lad's unearthly maps caused jealousy, suspicion and fear.
With one of the apprentice's magic maps in their possession, India and Matt must use their wits and India's fledgling, untried magic to find him. But the more they investigate, the more sinister plots they uncover, including a link between the Mapmakers' and Watchmakers' Guilds, and an ancient magical treasure buried beneath the streets of London.
As the net of suspicion widens and enemies draw closer, it's not just the apprentice's life that's in danger, but Matt's too. Someone will go to great lengths to prevent him discovering the name of the man who can fix the watch keeping him alive. Great lengths indeed.
Despite their frequent clashes, Lincoln and Charlie manage to work together to narrow their list of suspects. No one can be trusted, especially not the members of the committee who are not what they seem. Long buried pasts are dug up as Charlie and Lincoln attempt to restore peace to Lichfield.
But when danger enters her home, Charlie's world is shattered.
"Part romance, part mystery, part magic; all of which a joy to read." - Dreamer J's Book Reviews
"This story has everything I look for in a quality, entertaining piece of fiction. 1) A strong female lead, 2) a dark and mysterious male character (I admit, they are my weakness), 3) eloquent writing, and 4) lots of quirky humor and banter." - Danaye from Young @ Art book reviews
DESCRIPTION: THE APOTHECARY'S POISON
When a newspaper report of a medical miracle catches Matt's eye, he and India go in search of Dr. Hale in the hope he is more magical doctor than miracle worker and can lead them to Chronos. But Hale turns out to be an apothecary magician keen to educate the public about magic.
Their disappointment at not finding Chronos is soon forgotten when Hale is murdered, and Matt becomes a suspect. With Matt's nemesis Sheriff Payne influencing the investigating detective, India and Matt know they must find the real killer, or risk his freedom, and ultimately his life. Time is running out as they hunt for a killer capable of turning medicine into poison with a magic spell, as well as continue the search for Chronos. A search that must end in success before Matt's malfunctioning watch stops altogether.
With his magic watch slowing down, Matt needs all the help India and his friends can offer before time runs out. But his nemesis will do anything to bring about his downfall, including rock Matt's family with a scandal that can ruin them, and Matt and India's chance of happiness.
Even worse for Seth, shocking secrets he'd rather leave buried are brought to the surface.
Joined on their adventure by an irritable Gus and a mysterious Eva, the four friends must learn the truth of Alice's past so she can forge her future.
But a future with whom? And where?
The MINISTRY OF CURIOSITIES series is complete:
#1 The Last Necromancer
#2 Her Majesty's Necromancer
#3 Beyond The Grave
#4 Grave Expectations
#5 Ashes To Ashes
#6 From The Ashes
#7 Of Fate And Phantoms
#8 Veiled In Moonlight
#9 Vow Of Deception
#10 The Wisdom Of Madness
Charlie and Lincoln return to London to find two supernaturals have been murdered, and Charlie might be next. As if that wasn't bad enough, the man who adopted her has escaped from prison, and the committee members have just learned some news that infuriates them. Now there's talk of sending Charlie away again. Far away.
But the worst is yet to come. Charlie is kidnapped and forced to summon one of the murder victims - but she's unable to send him back. With an angry dead supernatural on the loose and the committee determined to get rid of her, Charlie's time with the Ministry of Curiosities, and Lincoln, is in grave danger of coming to an end.
The search leads them down a dark path littered with family secrets and titillating scandal. Using her necromancy to expose those secrets, Charlie unwittingly raises a spirit with the power to override her control. With a dead body on the loose in London, Charlie and Lincoln must work together to send it back before havoc is unleashed, and the committee members find out.
Because if they do, they will have more ammunition in their fight to send Charlie away from her home and everyone she loves.
Keywords: alternate history, paranormal romance, urban fantasy, victorian era, victorian historical romance, historical fantasy, ghost story, spririts, gothic, teen novel, young adult, fantasy romance, myths & legends, Frankenstein, steampunk