Kari Bovée’s Girl With A Gun proved that Annie Okley could make a fascinating amateur sleuth. She mines facets of her early life and wove them into an entertaining whodunnit. With the second book in the series, Peccadillo At The Palace, she proves there is a lot more to use from the biography of The Little Sure Shot.
The Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show’s performance for the Queen Of England serves as the backdrop for the mystery this time. Along with Bill and Annie on the voyage over with Annie and Bill are her husband, trick shooter Frank Butler, her friend, suffragette reporter Emma Wilson, and the queen’s emissary Amal Bhatuka. Early on, after a wild event with Annie’s horse Buck, Bhatuka is murdered by poisoning. Annie and Emma work to find the culprit on board. When they reach England the Agatha Christie-style mystery moves into thriller territory with Irish separatists and an assassination plot to foil.
Bovée weaves character, history, and plot seamlessly together. Annie’s news of a possible pregnancy has her asking what she wants in life. Her friendship with the more progressive Emma leads to reflections of herself and her dreams. As the story builds to a climax in its Victorian setting and thriller plot, we cheer on Annie to both save the world and her place in it.
With Peccadillo At The Palace, Kari Bovée has affirmed that Annie Oakley makes a strong series sleuth. Her real life adventures can easily envelope a fictional mystery. She has skills and resolves to count on and there is the possible journey toward the feminist icon we know. I’m looking forward to her getting her gun for the next one.
Kari Bovée’s Peccadillo at the Palace is available to purchase now in-store and online at BookPeople. And be sure to catch a reading a signing with Bovée when she stops at BookPeople on October 13th at 5PM to discuss Peccadillo at the Palace.