‘Seven For A Secret’ is the second book in Lyndsay Faye’s series set in the mid-1800s and featuring Timothy Wild, a young New York police detective. The events of the first book ‘The Gods of Gotham’ led to the creation of the New York Police Department. As an early member, Timothy Wilde holds copper star number 107.
The early police force was an imperfect creation. Supported and funded by the democrats, it had to follow the rules laid down by the party. With immigrant Irish and Blacks competing for the same jobs, and never enough jobs to go around, preference would always be given to the Irish since they were able to vote. So it is not surprising that the ‘blackbirders’ were able to thrive. They were slave catchers retrieving runaway slaves from the South. But, with good slaves fetching a high price, it was not unusual for ‘free blacks’ to be kidnapped, abused and sold. The law not only turned a blind eye, but in many cases the copper stars were involved.
When the beautiful Lucy Adams approaches Timothy, her sister and her son have been stolen. Timothy, an abolitionist at heart sets out to retrieve the abductees. But this is only the beginning.
The story takes us through secret marriages, corrupt police and politicians, the underground railway, murder, and heart breaking abuse. Timothy walks a fine line between his conscience and the job he is directed to do.
The characters in the story are brilliant and once again there is some excellent interaction between Timothy and his morphine addicted by brilliant brother Valentine.
New York in the 1800s was a tough place with too many people and not enough of anything to go around. There are hints throughout the story of the looming civil war and I’m hoping that the series will continue and take us further down this path.
This book could be read on its own, but reading ‘Gods of Gotham’ first adds so much to the characters and environment that I would recommend reading the books in order. I can’t wait for the third book in the series!
Book Published 2013