Benevolent Society Of Ill-Mannered Ladies

Benevolent Society Of Ill-Mannered Ladies

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A high society amateur detective at the heart of Regency London uses her wits and invisibility as an 'old maid' to protect other women in a new and fiercely feminist historical mystery series from New York Times bestselling author Alison Goodman.

Longlisted for the 2023 ARA Historical Novel Prize

Welcome to the secret life of the Colebrook twins: unnoticed old maids to most, but unseen champions to those in need - society be damned.

Lady Augusta Colebrook, 'Gus', is determinedly unmarried, bored by society life, and tired of being dismissed at the age of forty-two. She and her twin sister, Julia, who is grieving her dead betrothed, need a distraction. One soon presents itself: to rescue their friend's goddaughter, Caroline, from her violent husband.

The sisters set out to Caroline's country estate with a plan, but their carriage is accosted by a highwayman. In the scuffle, Gus accidentally shoots the ruffian, only to discover he is Lord Evan Belford, an acquaintance from their past who was charged with murder and exiled to Australia twenty years ago. With Lord Evan injured and unconscious, the sisters have no choice but to bring him on their mission to save Caroline. What follows is a high adventure full of danger, clever improvisation, heart-racing near misses, and a little help from a revived and rather charming Lord Evan.

And so begin the beguiling adventures of the Colebrook twins ...

'Goodman's ladies are the undercover Regency heroes we've been waiting for! This is sparkling, thrilling, romantic fun.' Toni Jordan

'Witty and poignant, this is a clever twist on historical romance and mystery. The Colebrook twins are the Regency's answer to Holmes and Watson!' Belinda Alexandra

'A joyous romp through Regency England that is equally entertaining, revealing, feminist, heartbreaking and humorous' Books+Publishing

'Heroines can appear out of nowhere and soon become indispensable, and such is the case with Lady Augusta Colebrook, who, with her twin sister Lady Julia, is at the heart of this compelling, enthralling, unforgettable novel. You will be very glad you've let Gus into your life then wonder how you ever did without her.' Sophie Green

'Such an unexpected book. A Regency romp, like a 21st-century Georgette Heyer, with gay characters, people of colour and a feisty and independent heroine in her 40s. Just wonderful and delicious.' Maggie Alderson

'Fresh and fearless, Alison Goodman's exquisitely written, impeccably researched genre-blending novel shines a light in the darkest corners of Regency England. The Benevolent Society of Ill-Mannered Ladies is part heart-racing adventure, part gothic mystery, part tantalizing romance, and wholly wonderful. I can't wait for the next instalment!' Joanna Lowell, author of Artfully Yours

'Fierce, funny, and often dark, this is an eye-opening portrait of a colorful yet misogynistic period in English history. Readers will be eager to return for the duo's next adventure.' Publishers Weekly

'A truly delightful feminist adventure story that will have you cheering on the unconventional Colebrook sisters in all their exploits.' Stephanie Marie Thornton, USA Today bestselling author of Her Lost Words