I read cozy and historical mysteries, a bit of Paranormal/UF, and to mix it up, I read science and gardening books on occasion.
I'm giving this 4 stars but really, it's probably closer to 3.5 but it held my interest in a way few books have recently.
The story takes place in Venice and the author did a fantastic job with setting the scene, but still, for some reason, I was missing something that gave me that sense that I was there. Lady Emily is feeling rather self-important about her role as an investigator in this one too and that rather got on my nerves.
The book used a dual time-line plot between "present" day (Victorian era) and the 1600's, with alternating chapters; I normally detest these and I started reading with a certain amount of hostility about it. By the middle I was reading it with dread but completely immersed in the story and by the end I was looking up at the ceiling blinking rapidly and trying to get the tears to go back where they came from. The Victorian era plot was only just so-so and the big reveal about the murderer relied on hidden knowledge not shared with the reader. It's truly the 17th century story that elevates this book an extra star.