From School Library Journal
Gr 7 Up–Lucy Sexton lives a charmed, but relatively boring, life in Victorian London. Her writer father provides her with books to read and money to spend while her mother, a true lady, dotes on her only daughter with love and affection. Then a knock comes at the door that changes her life forever. Standing on the other side is a woman who is the spitting image of her mother. Helen Smythe is her name, and she is the long-lost twin of Lucy's mother, Aliese. After being separated at birth, the sisters grew up in totally different situations. Aliese was raised by a family with wealth and promise while Helen lived in an orphanage and was forced to work. After the initial shock wears off, Aliese welcomes Helen into her family. After months of coaching, training, eating, and tailoring, Helen truly becomes Aliese's double. All seems well until one cold winter day when Lucy comes home to find Helen and her mother in a bloody room–one dead and one alive. Lucy is sure it is her mother who has been spared, but as years pass, her certainty wanes. This suspense-filled story starts out as a basic mystery but quickly turns into a fast-paced thriller filled with murder and intrigue. Readers will also enjoy a love story as Lucy falls for Kit, her new neighbor. This riveting story will keep readers guessing until the very end.–Traci Glass, Eugene Public Library, OR. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Thirteen-year-old Lucy Sexton is the beloved only child of a wealthy London family circa WWI. When her mother’s identical twin sister appears on their doorstep, the family is shocked but immediately accepts Aunt Helen as one of their own. Separated at birth from her more fortunate sister, Helen blossoms as she receives new clothes, tutelage, and etiquette lessons until it’s hard to tell her apart from Lucy’s mother. Tragedy strikes when Lucy comes home one day to find her mother and aunt tied to chairs and covered in blood, one dead and the other traumatized. Who’s behind the killing, and who is the survivor? Baratz-Logsted’s gothic murder mystery is rife with twists and moves swiftly and elegantly. Lucy is a spunky young woman who frequently challenges societal expectations yet remains in character as a member of upper-class English society. Despite a predictable romance with the boy next door, the many surprises that comprise the ending will intrigue and delight readers, as will the satisfying epilogue, which follows Lucy into adulthood as she raises her own daughter. Grades 7-11. --Debbie Carton