A Treacherous Likeness by Lynn Shepherd

Lynn Shepherd is a British author who studied English in Oxford and worked as a freelance copywriter for more than a decade.

A Treacherous Likeness is the third book in Image of book A Treacherous Likenessthe Charles Maddox series. I have not read the first (Murder at Mansfield Park) but read the second (Tom-All-Alone’s) over six years ago. I enjoyed it so much that I borrowed A Treacherous Likeness from a friend shortly after, unfortunately I have only just got round to reading it (thankfully my friend is patient).

(Note: Outside of the UK, Tom-All-Alone’s is called A Solitary House, and A Treacherous Likeness is called A Fatal Likeness)

A Treacherous Likeness follows Charles Maddox, an investigator in the mid-19th century, as he works to unravel the mysteries surround the life of poet Percy Shelley and his wife, author Mary Shelley.

Throughout the book I found myself changing my opinions of the main characters continuously, in fact I’m still not 100% sure what I think of them. There is a lot of history, London in the 19th century, the class system etc. There is also a lot of interesting information about the Shelleys. This is of course combined with fictitious characters and events. The author’s note at the end is very helpful in separating fact from fiction and speculation.

I found this book to be an enjoyable read. I like Shepherd’s way of writing, she occasionally talks to you separate from the story, discussing how a behaviour would result in a medical diagnosis nowadays etc. Although it takes you out of the period the story is based in, it seems to somehow bring you closer to the characters.

This book has raised a lot of questions for me about the Shelleys and even about Byron. I’m leaving it with lots of curiosity and will be doing some research about them all to sate it.

I really enjoyed reading this and am pleased to see that there has been a fourth book released in the series, although it does seem to be only on the Kindle that I can find it. Regardless, I hope it’s not another six years before I read it. I would also like to go back and read the first in the series.

Which books are you grateful for?

A friend introduced me to an interesting Instagram account today, it’s @gratefulness_org and is called A Network for Grateful Living. The most recent daily question that had been posted was “For which books am I truly grateful?”

I’ve thought about this all afternoon and I have come up with the following: Photo of Instagram post

A long walk in the woods by Bill Bryson – This was my introduction to Bill Bryson and I now love his books, this one is my favourite though.  The journey and the experiences had whilst walking the Appalachian Trail were so well described that I don’t feel the need to watch the film, I can picture it in my head.  Definitely a book that I dip in and out of when I want to escape and imagine going on an adventure.

A Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood – I’m not sure why it took me so long to get round to reading this, but I finally read it last year.  It was absorbing and disturbing in equal measure.  It’s a book that is still so relevant now and it brought my inner feminist to life. One to re-read regularly.

1984 by George Orwell – I read this for the first time a few years ago and it is one of my favourites of all the books I have read.  It amazes me that something written in the 1940s is still so relevant now and opened up different viewpoints to me with regards to politics and ways of looking at the world.

Which books are you most grateful for?