After years of reading fictional gothic horrors, it's kind of a weird delight to discover that there are even stranger things going on in real life. As mentioned in my review of Black Diamonds, I loved it so much I immediately had to get a hold of this, which was her first book.
Baily is an historian who is granted access to the Duke of Rutland's private archive. She's going through these beautifully stored and catalogued collections of letters (so many letters), and there are three gaps. The rest of the book is the painstaking collection of evidence to fill in those gaps and solve those mysteries. It's like watching Sherlock at work, as Bailey describes what she has to find next, and how, only she reveals what she discovers as it comes to light. The process is fascinating, as are the things those people got up to a century ago, not least because where did they find the time to plot and write all those letters?
The most entertaining sort of history. It's amazing, really, how quickly family history can be hidden. Props to the current Duke and Duchess of Rutland, for giving Bailey such access and assistance.