The Cliff House Strangler by Shirley Tallman

By Shirley Tallman

Nineteenth-century legal professional Sarah Woolson remains to be attempting to get her existence jointly. opposed to her family's needs, she opens her personal San Francisco legislations company, in basic terms to discover that clients---paying consumers, that is---are cautious of permitting a lady to regulate their criminal affairs. simply whilst her endurance, in addition to her cash, are approximately to expire, Sarah and her good friend and previous colleague, Robert Campbell, attend a s?ance at San Francisco's Cliff residence. Making their approach during the worst typhoon of the season, they come at their vacation spot to discover themselves in for a lot greater than, in Robert's phrases, "silly parlor tricks." After a dramatic exhibit of spirit apparitions, flying trumpets, and phantom tune, Madame Olga Karpova---a popular Russian clairvoyant---and her visitors make a grisly discovery: one of many twelve humans seated on the desk has been brutally strangled.Later, while extra s?ance members are discovered slain, Sarah is pressed into protecting the accused assassin. engaged on her client's case, she fast reveals herself on the heart of a classy homicide plot regarding ghosts, gypsies, and town corridor, all of the whereas dealing with off with Robert in a unstable criminal conflict and investigating her brother Frederick's shady political dealings. hardly ever right habit for a nineteenth-century lady, yet Sarah would not have it the other way.Feisty and decided, Sarah keeps to flout the notions of "proper" femininity during this sequence that could be a turn-of-the-century solution to Legally Blonde.

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Her dark eyes captured those of each of us in turn. ” This last bit was said in a voice so pregnant with implications that it precipitated another low, nervous murmur around the table. She quickly squelched the response. “There are some of you in this room who scoff, who doubt not only my powers but the very existence of life beyond the dark portals of death. ” Her voice rose to a crescendo, drowning out even the storm. I felt Robert stiffen beside me, and could not deny my own quick intake of breath.

Tonight, the churning black sea crashed against Seal Rocks, as if determined to crush them into sand. And for once, there was no sign of the sea lions, otters, and seals responsible for naming the famous rocks, even though they commonly cavorted upon the sandstone cliffs at night. Perhaps Robert is right, I thought, looking out at driving sheets of rain; most sensible mammals would not venture out on a night like this. Descending from his perch at the front of the brougham, Eddie Cooper opened the carriage door and handed me an umbrella.

The drama was about to begin, and I felt a brief shiver of anticipation. Looking at the expectant faces watching her from around the table, I was sure I wasn’t the only person eager to see what Madame Karpova had in store for us. While those around the table resettled themselves, some sharing whispered comments with their neighbors, others darting inquisitive looks at Madame Karpova, I, too, took the opportunity to study the psychic. She presented a singular appearance, both in her manner of dress as well as in her demeanor, which, like her brother’s, was decidedly theatrical.

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