Book Reviews of The Russian Hill Murders (Sarah Woolson, Bk 2)

The Russian Hill Murders (Sarah Woolson, Bk 2)
The Russian Hill Murders - Sarah Woolson, Bk 2
Author: Shirley Tallman
ISBN-13: 9780312328573
ISBN-10: 0312328575
Publication Date: 7/1/2005
Pages: 288
Rating:
  • Currently 4.2/5 Stars.
 20

4.2 stars, based on 20 ratings
Publisher: St. Martin's Minotaur
Book Type: Hardcover
Reviews: Amazon | Write a Review

5 Book Reviews submitted by our Members...sorted by voted most helpful

reviewed The Russian Hill Murders (Sarah Woolson, Bk 2) on + 121 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 7
The second in the Sarah Woolson Historical Murder Mystery series. If you like this genre, you will really enjoy this book. Set in 1880's San Francisco, all historical facts are accurate. Sarah Woolson, one of the first female lawyers in the U.S., gets into more scrapes and trouble as she plunges into another series of mysteries that must be unravelled. Very entertaining!
reviewed The Russian Hill Murders (Sarah Woolson, Bk 2) on + 8 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
Early San Francisco, and a young woman attorney way ahead of her time. The page by page suspense keeps the reader not wanting to put the book down.
reviewed The Russian Hill Murders (Sarah Woolson, Bk 2) on + 1111 more book reviews
Feisty San Francisco attorney Sarah Woolson is in a pitched battle with the old boy law office where she works. Her boss, horrified that a female could aspire to the law profession constantly finds new busywork, coffee cup cleaning and typing projects for Sarah.

This 27 year-old defies conventional life -- her mom wants her to settle down, Sarah wants action. Sarah gets her wish when Caroline Godfrey, wealthy socialite and supporter of the new Women and Childrens Hospital, drops dead at a charity dinner.

Sarah is troubled by this death; blood tests indicate that Caroline had taken too much of her nitroglycerine for her heart ailment. Sarahs unease grows more serious when other people, related to the new hospital, die.

Theres another plot afoot; a pregnant widow comes to see Sarah, hoping for help. Her husband, along with 4 others, died in a sweatshop fire. She asks Sarah to sue to help her take care of her (soon to be) 3 children. The problem is that building ownership is not easy to discover; the laws (and dangerous thugs) seem to protect the sweatshop owners.

Of course, the prestigious law office where Sarah works decries the very idea of helping the poverty-stricken mother and children. Sarah, along with her pair of wily confederates (Scottish attorney Robert Campbell and young hansom cabdriver Eddie) pursue both problems.

If the law firm was upset about the widows case, they move into high boil over Sarah daring to take a criminal court case. (In Great Britain it could take 15 years for a young male solicitor to get to be first chair in a criminal trial.)

The hospitals Chinese chef is blamed, but Chinatowns most powerful tong lord insists that Sarah personally defend the very-difficult chef. Readers will need to keep a score card to stay abreast of the possible murderers as Sarah, Eddie and Robert try to solve the case.

The action moves at a fast clip and bodies drop like flies. Robert, with his strong Scottish brogue, is a hoot. He constantly reminds Sarah of what she cannot do -- which prods her to prove him wrong. Sarah, Eddie and Robert are delightful.
reviewed The Russian Hill Murders (Sarah Woolson, Bk 2) on + 136 more book reviews
~ ENGAGING HISTORICAL MURDER MYSTERY - OUR STRONG AND OPINIONATED HEROINE IS BACK AND EVEN MORE ENJOYABLE THE SECOND TIME AROUND (4 stars) ~

THE RUSSIAN HILL MURDERS is a great follow-up to the first book in this entertaining series. I obviously found it engaging and enjoyable, since I read it in one day; I immediately put a hold on the next two books at my library, as I am anxious to see what will happen next in Sarah's life ... and I'll admit, I'm also curious to see which romantic relationship develops into something.

Like Murder on Nob Hill (Book 1), the mystery here is well-done and the historical setting of the story feels very authentic. While the first book really kept me guessing, I did have more of a feeling as to what had happened with this story and didn't find it as interesting as the first mystery. However, it held my attention and everything came together very nicely in the end.

Sarah Woolson, our heroine, continues to be a real spitfire and very opinionated, but while I found her to be a little excessive - and therefore sometimes annoying - in the first book, I thought here she appeared more mature, while still having the right amount of "fire in the belly" and spunk. The secondary cast of characters continues to be interesting, with my favorite being ...

Robert Campbell! He gets his own paragraph because I absolutely love him, lol. Robert is a fellow associate attorney at the firm, as well as a big, loud Scot who often verbally spars with Sarah. By this book, it's clear that he does respect her as an attorney and knows she's intelligent, for which as I was glad, because had he continued to have the same slightly supercilious attitude as in the first book, it would have gotten to be annoying instead of amusing.

While Robert and Sarah still often act as opposing forces, they work very well together in this book and seem to have developed a rhythm to their relationship. Sarah is completely clueless that there might be something more to their friendship, and as it's told in first person, for all I know Robert is just as unaware. With the introduction of Pierce Godfrey, however, who is a rival potential suitor, Robert begins to show something of a jealous side and a definite interest in what might develop between Pierce and Sarah. We all know who I'm rooting for, so I'll leave it at that ... I'm keeping my fingers crossed that we will be given some indication over the course of the next two books that my guy will (eventually) win out.

BOTTOM LINE:
Another entertaining and enjoyable read in this lovely mystery series. While the writing is very simple and straightforward, the characters are engaging, the mystery is interesting, and the story is threaded with humor, so all-in-all I would definitely recommend it. I think it can be read as a stand-alone, but would personally advise that the books be read in order, as I think you'll get more out of the experience that way.

THE SARAH WOOLSON MYSTERY SERIES:
Book 1 - Murder on Nob Hill (4 stars)
Book 2 - THE RUSSIAN HILL MURDERS (4 stars)
Book 3 - The Cliff House Strangler
Book 4 - Scandal on Rincon Hill
reviewed The Russian Hill Murders (Sarah Woolson, Bk 2) on + 136 more book reviews
~ ENGAGING HISTORICAL MURDER MYSTERY - OUR STRONG AND OPINIONATED HEROINE IS BACK AND EVEN MORE ENJOYABLE THE SECOND TIME AROUND (4 stars) ~

THE RUSSIAN HILL MURDERS is a great follow-up to the first book in this entertaining series. I obviously found it engaging and enjoyable, since I read it in one day; I immediately put a hold on the next two books at my library, as I am anxious to see what will happen next in Sarah's life ... and I'll admit, I'm also curious to see which romantic relationship develops into something.

Like Murder on Nob Hill (Book 1), the mystery here is well-done and the historical setting of the story feels very authentic. While the first book really kept me guessing, I did have more of a feeling as to what had happened with this story and didn't find it as interesting as the first mystery. However, it held my attention and everything came together very nicely in the end.

Sarah Woolson, our heroine, continues to be a real spitfire and very opinionated, but while I found her to be a little excessive - and therefore sometimes annoying - in the first book, I thought here she appeared more mature, while still having the right amount of "fire in the belly" and spunk. The secondary cast of characters continues to be interesting, with my favorite being ...

Robert Campbell! He gets his own paragraph because I absolutely love him, lol. Robert is a fellow associate attorney at the firm, as well as a big, loud Scot who often verbally spars with Sarah. By this book, it's clear that he does respect her as an attorney and knows she's intelligent, for which as I was glad, because had he continued to have the same slightly supercilious attitude as in the first book, it would have gotten to be annoying instead of amusing.

While Robert and Sarah still often act as opposing forces, they work very well together in this book and seem to have developed a rhythm to their relationship. Sarah is completely clueless that there might be something more to their friendship, and as it's told in first person, for all I know Robert is just as unaware. With the introduction of Pierce Godfrey, however, who is a rival potential suitor, Robert begins to show something of a jealous side and a definite interest in what might develop between Pierce and Sarah. We all know who I'm rooting for, so I'll leave it at that ... I'm keeping my fingers crossed that we will be given some indication over the course of the next two books that my guy will (eventually) win out.

BOTTOM LINE:
Another entertaining and enjoyable read in this lovely mystery series. While the writing is very simple and straightforward, the characters are engaging, the mystery is interesting, and the story is threaded with humor, so all-in-all I would definitely recommend it. I think it can be read as a stand-alone, but would personally advise that the books be read in order, as I think you'll get more out of the experience that way.

THE SARAH WOOLSON MYSTERY SERIES:
Book 1 - Murder on Nob Hill (4 stars)
Book 2 - THE RUSSIAN HILL MURDERS (4 stars)
Book 3 - The Cliff House Strangler
Book 4 - Scandal on Rincon Hill