Although I love Regency fiction, The Barrister and the Letter of Marque is a quite different type of story than I usually read. I decided to stretch myself a little and see what this author could do with a legal suspense book set during that time. This is the first book I’ve read by Todd M. Johnson, and, overall, I felt like it was good solid writing. While the beginning started out a little slow for me, I soon got invested in the story and was looking forward to finding out how barrister William Snopes was going to get Lady Madeleine Jameson and Captain Tuttle out of the mess they were in.
The story flowed well, was carefully crafted, and the author kept the suspense up and the twists and turns coming. I enjoyed learning more about the workings of the legal profession in Regency England. The characters were well-written and engaging. I especially liked getting to know William Snopes and Madeleine Jamison and seeing their relationship grow and change. I wouldn’t mind more tales about William Snopes.
With plenty of intrigue, suspense, historical detail, and dashes of romance and inspiration, this book has something for everyone and should especially appeal to those who enjoy historical mysteries.
*I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy from Bethany House Publishers. All opinions are my own.
As a barrister in 1818 London, William Snopes has witnessed firsthand the danger of only the wealthy having their voices heard, and he's a strong advocate who defends the poorer classes against the powerful. That changes the day a struggling heiress, Lady Madeleine Jameson, arrives at his door.
In a last-ditch effort to save her faltering estate, Lady Jameson invested in a merchant brig, the Padget. The ship was granted a rare privilege by the king's regent: a Letter of Marque authorizing the captain to seize the cargo of French traders operating illegally in the Indian Sea. Yet when the Padget returns to London, her crew is met by soldiers ready to take possession of their goods and arrest the captain for piracy. And the Letter--the sole proof his actions were legal--has mysteriously vanished.
Moved by the lady's distress, intrigued by the Letter, and goaded by an opposing solicitor, Snopes takes the case. But as he delves deeper into the mystery, he learns that the forces arrayed against Lady Jameson, and now himself, are even more perilous than he'd imagined.