Wednesday, March 15, 2023

Sophia Rose Reviews: Murder at Half Moon Gate by Andrea Penrose


Today Sophia Rose shares her review of Murder at Half Moon Gate by Andrea Penrose #2 in her Wrexford and Sloane historical mystery series.

Murder at Half Moon Gate by Andrea Penrose

#2 Wrexford and Sloane

Historical Mystery

Publisher: Kensington

Published:  3.27.18

Pages:  370

Rating: 5 stars

Format: ebook

Source: Purchased

Sellers: Amazon

ADD TO: GoodReads


GoodReads Blurb:

A wealthy lord who happens to be a brilliant scientist . . . an enigmatic young widow who secretly pens satirical cartoons . . . a violent killing disguised as a robbery . . . Nothing is as it seems in Regency London, especially when the Earl of Wrexford and Charlotte Sloane join forces to solve a shocking murder.
When Lord Wrexford discovers the body of a gifted inventor in a dark London alley, he promptly alerts the watchman and lets the authorities handle the matter. But Wrexford soon finds himself drawn into the murder investigation when the inventor’s widow begs for his assistance, claiming the crime was not a random robbery. It seems her husband’s designs for a revolutionary steam-powered engine went missing the night of his death. The plans could be worth a fortune . . . and very dangerous in the wrong hands.
Joining Wrexford in his investigation is Charlotte Sloane, who uses the pseudonym A. J. Quill to publish her scathing political cartoons. Her extensive network of informants is critical for her work, but she doesn’t mind tapping that same web of spies to track down an elusive killer. Each suspect—from ambitious assistants to rich investors, and even the inventor’s widow—is entwined in a maze of secrets and lies that leads Wrexford and Sloane down London’s most perilous stews and darkest alleyways.
With danger lurking at every turn, the potent combination of Wrexford’s analytical mind and Sloane’s exacting intuition begins to unravel the twisted motivations behind the inventor’s death. But they are up against a cunning and deadly foe—a killer ready to strike again before they can recover the inventor’s priceless designs . . .


Sophia Rose's review:

I dove right back into the second book in the series and was swept up once again into Wrexford and Sloane’s fascinating, gritty Regency London world for a new grisly murder.  Murder at Half Moon Gate shows the first book was no fluke and I eagerly devoured it once I started reading.


Murder at Half Moon Gate is book two in the Wrexford and Sloane series which presents a new murder mystery for them to solve, but continues with the equally intriguing and complex personal relationships begun in book one so they are best read in series order.


Mere weeks after the events in Murder on Black Swan Lane, Wrexford and Sheffield stumble across a fresh murder in an East End back alley.  The victim is someone Wrexford knows- a leading engineer in the field of steam engines.  He might have let it go as a random act of violence and thieving, but the widow insists it’s not and he feels compelled to follow the bloody trail of clues to the truth.  He taps Sheffield for his familiarity with the aristocratic clubs and gaming hells and hesitantly pulls in Mrs. Sloane for her chain of informants.  Turns out Charlotte has her own ties to the murder victim and wants to get at the truth even if it means more of her secrets are drawn out and danger returns to her world.


I really enjoy the way Andrea Penrose sketches in her Regency London world from the sparkling wealth of Mayfair to the grime and shadows of the East End poor districts and does an even better job with cast of characters from all spectrums of life.  Lord Wrexford and Mrs. Sloane have a chemistry that is at the center of the investigation and an unorthodox friendship they tentatively form.  They bring out the best (and the flaws) in each other.  The Weasels, Sheffield, Henning, Tyler, and Griffin return to help solve the murder.  I appreciate seeing good development in the series plot, but also following the cunning and twisting trail to the solution of their latest case.  Another breath-catching climax and satisfying ending with a fascinating secret of Charlotte’s revealed. 


Again, I was left wanting more.  This historical mystery series caught me up from the beginning and is fast rising to my favorite’s list.  Definitely a recommend.


Author’s Bio:
Andrea Penrose is the USA Today bestselling author of Regency-era historical fiction, including the acclaimed Wrexford & Sloane mystery series, as well as Regency romances written under the names Cara Elliott and Andrea Pickens. Published internationally in ten languages, she is a three-time RITA Award finalist and the recipient of numerous writing awards, including two Daphne Du Maurier Awards for Historical Mystery and two Gold Leaf Awards.

A graduate of Yale University with a B.A. in Art and an M.F.A. in Graphic Design, Andrea fell in love with Regency England after reading Pride and Prejudice and has maintained a fascination with the era’s swirling silks and radical new ideas throughout her writing career. She lives in Connecticut and blogs with a community of historical fiction authors at She also can be found at and on Instagram @AndreaPenroseBooks.


Sophia’s Bio:

Sophia is a quiet though curious gal who dabbles in cooking, book reviewing, piano-playing, and gardening. Road trips and campouts, museums and monuments, restaurants and theaters are her jam. Encouraged and supported by an incredible man and loving family. A Northern Californian transplant to the Great Lakes Region of the US. Lover of Jane Austen, Baseball, Cats, Scooby Doo, and Chocolate.

As a lifelong reader, it was inevitable that Sophia would discover book blogs and the joy of blog reviewing. Sophia is a prolific reader and audiobook listener which allows her to experience so many wonderful books, authors, and narrators. Few genres are outside her reading tastes, but her true love is fiction particularly history, mystery, sci-fi, and romance. Though, sorry, no horror or she will run like Shaggy and Scooby.





  1. I LOVE these so much! I like the STEM aspects also. The Weasels!

    Anne - Books of My Heart

    1. Yes, it was a brilliant move to make him a chemistry buff and her and artist. Those Weasels get my heart each time. :) Getting ready to start the next book.

  2. Well, I am very excited as these books are part of Audible Plus catalog. I am going to dive in Sophia!

    1. Yay! I think you'll love this detecting pair, Kimberly!

  3. Ooh, this sounds great! I just saw Kimberly's comment and plan to check them out in Audible Plus.

    1. I'm so glad Anne put me onto these and happy to pass on the book goodness to you, Carole. :)

  4. You know have a winner when a book leaves you wanting more.

  5. Oh, just saw Kimberly's comment. Happy to know they're part of Audible Plus catalog. Glad you enjoyed the 2nd book in the series.