I had never read any of Lisa Karon Richardson's books before, but The Peacock Throne sounded so interesting, that I just had to read it. Miss Lydia Garrett is an orphan, living with her uncle's family. When her uncle is murdered, she is determined to solve the crime that the authorities dismissed as a random burglary. Her investigation leads her to the Earl of Danbury, except he was murdered on the same night as her uncle - both with an ornate, peacock knife.
Lydia and Anthony (the new Lord Danbury) decide to work together to solve the crime and locate the mysterious Peacock Throne of India that seems to be at the center of the crime. They weren't expecting Marcus Harting to force himself into their investigation, but together the three of them embark on a journey to find the throne, catch a spy, and thwart Napoleon's attempts to find the Peacock Throne himself.
I can't help myself. I enjoy historical fiction, especially if it includes some intrigue and a bit of romance. The Peacock Throne contains all of that. I enjoyed watching Lydia emerge as a more confident woman. Gentry by birth, raised with a good education as a simple vicar's daughter, and then reduced to servanthood, Lydia is an unknown entity to the two men she's working with. Both Harting and Danbury find her intelligence, independence, and beauty alluring. A love triangle of sorts develops as both men seem to be falling for her, and her own feelings seem to be unclear.
If you're looking for a simple, wrapped-up conclusion, you don't get it. They do find the throne and the spy. However, it still isn't clear which man Lydia will end up with. What is assured is another adventure as both Lydia and Danbury are drafted by Harting for a new mission. I'll be looking forward to the next book, for more adventure and romance with Miss Lydia Garrett - a most unusual woman for her time.