Hi friends! I’m here to share my thoughts on a conclusion to a series that has honestly just devolved over time. But it’s okay! Let’s spill the tea!
Audrey Rose Wadsworth and Thomas Cresswell have landed in America, a bold, brash land unlike the genteel streets of London they knew. But like London, the city of Chicago hides its dark secrets well. When the two attend the spectacular World’s Fair, they find the once-in-a-lifetime event tainted with reports of missing people and unsolved murders.
Determined to help, Audrey Rose and Thomas begin their investigations, only to find themselves facing a serial killer unlike any they’ve heard of before. Identifying him is one thing, but capturing him—and getting dangerously lost in the infamous Murder Hotel he constructed as a terrifying torture device—is another.
Will Audrey Rose and Thomas see their last mystery to the end—together and in love—or will their fortunes finally run out when their most depraved adversary makes one final, devastating kill?
Some of you might remember my, ah, extremely disappointed review on Escaping From Houdini. So why on earth would I continue this series, you might ask? Well, friends, I ONLY HAD ONE BOOK LEFT. I couldn’t simply read three books, no, I must read four to truly feel like my time had been properly wasted. Also, I needed a topaz colored book for the Reading Rush* so I picked this. And read it in one day. ALL OF THIS IS SO OFF-BRAND FOR ME**.
*yeah…i’ve had this review sitting in my drafts since like august lol bye-
**minus me randomly deciding to do the rereading rush w/o telling anyone. now that is most certainly on-brand
Okay first of all…WHAT THE MINT CHOCOLATE CHIP HAPPENED TO THE MYSTERY IN THIS SERIES. Like okay, the first book had potential. The second expanded a bit upon said potential, and the third was like “lol there’s only potential for stupidity here.” Capturing the Devil shouldn’t even be called a mystery in my opinion. For half of the book, the focus is on the romance and then finally things pick up in the second half and BAM. We get a sloppy, half-witted attempt at creating a mystery full of suspense, throwing in a few clues and suspects. However, not only is there zero thrills but if you know any serial killers at all, you could literally guess this one with your eyes closed. Actually, you don’t even need to know serial killers. You just need to be able to read words* to figure out that the one hint about the killer is mentioned MULTIPLE times for a certain suspect.
*”be able to rEAd wORdS” no kidding what else are y’all going to read, animal crackers?
I truly do adore Thomas. Audrey Rose has reluctantly made her way back into my good graces. What can I say, I love a good romance! Although, she did make some extremely questionable decisions in this one. Good old Audrey Rose*. Again, I technically enjoyed the romance. I mean, some stupid stuff did happen. There was a lot of unnecessary drama surrounding the couple, which made me want to eat ice cream to drown my disappointed reader sorrows. It is absolutely mind-boggling to me how this series went from an okay mystery to absolutely none whatsoever. I wouldn’t mind the romance if this were a romance book. But it’s not. Therefore, I’m extraordinarily salty.
*the sarcasm is strong with this post
Audrey Rose is…a case and a half. I appreciated her character development in certain areas, like how she realized that marriage didn’t make her trapped. But there’s always a price! Her maturity came at the cost of her deductive prowess and common sense. Seriously, the way she handles confronting the killer is basically the #1 Forbidden Rule. LIKE SIS. YOU ALREADY WENT THROUGH THIS THREE TIMES. Why she’s so thick-headed, the world may never know.
Thomas is Thomas. He’s hilarious and romantic. I loved getting to see both the sweet, vulnerable side of him and the sarcastically charming side. However, apparently Audrey Rose didn’t just manage to ruin her own deductive skills, but Thomas’s as well. I’m 89% sure if the killer handed them a teacup and inside the teacup was written “I did it” they’d run around in circles yelping “WHAT DOES THIS MEAN” until crashing into each other and kissing for a while. LIKE WHAT THE HECK HAPPENED HERE.
I did enjoy getting to see several characters from previous books!! I thought that was a brilliant addition and I’m grateful for it. On the other hand, I think the author was trying to stretch too far with the whole Jack the Ripper reveal and tying it to this book. It made this feel…extremely contrived. Like more than average.
That’s basically it! See, I really adored the premise of this series. But it just continually got more disappointing over time. On the other hand, I loved the romance, and Maniscalco is a very talented writer! I definitely am excited to read Kingdom of the Wicked. Tell me:
Have you read this series?