Hello Gemmies! I have a book review to share with you today. I had the pleasure of meeting Jodie Lynn Zdrok last year and getting to discuss her debut novel Spectacle with her. I absolutely loved this murder mystery set in 1800's Paris. It is full of historical accuracies, intrigue, murder and mayhem with supernatural twists.
I love historical fiction mixed with murder and the paranormal, so Spectacle was right up my alley! The mix of history, murder, and supernatural shouldn't work.....but it does! What makes everything come alive for me is the incredibly detailed world building Jodie Lynn Zdrok has created. We get glimpses into 1880's Paris life, from the clothing, a day in the park, work life, food, transit, and even the macabre practice of families going to the morgue to view bodies.
Spectacle is also an extremely well written character driven story. We follow sixteen-year-old Nathalie Baudin, an interesting girl who writes the daily morgue column for Le Petit Journal disguised as a boy. While covering the morgue, Nathalie stumbles upon a secret about herself that can help crack the case of a gruesome string of murders. Nathalie is independent, daring, and relatable...you immediately want to know more about her. There is also a whole cast of engaging characters. I especially enjoyed Nathalie's relationship with her girlfriends. There is a real sense of sisterhood, that lends more weight and meaning as events unfold later on in the book. All of that being said, let us not forget about the murdery goodness and suspense. There are plenty of plot twists to keep you guessing throughout. To put it shortly, Spectacle is a bloody good time!
This gem published by Tor Teen is available for purchase from all major booksellers. I give Spectacle 4 out of 5 gems. If you love historical fiction, murder mysteries, and supernatural intrigue then read this book! I look forward to reading more stories set in this universe. Happy Reading!