By Deanna Raybourn
Release Date: March 12, 2019
Series or Standalone: Veronica Speedwell #4
Links: Amazon – Barnes & Noble – Goodreads
If you haven’t been able to tell yet, I love the Veronica Speedwell series with a passion! I feel like its a series that doesn’t get much hype, but it’s so good and I think everyone should read it! A Dangerous Collaboration is our fourth installment in the series and it is the one were all my dreams come true! Just kidding – but seriously this one finally, finally delivers on the slowburn romance hovering under the surface between Stoker and Veronica.
So I’ve read this book 5 times and am clearly going to be biased in my review. I freaking love this one. In our fourth adventure, Stoker’s older brother Tiberius ropes Veronica into playing his fiancée, much to Stoker’s displeasure, at a house party of an old friend, Malcolm Romilly. Little do Veronica, Stoker and Tiberius realize that this house party isn’t as innocent as it seems as each attendee, with the except of Veronica and Stoker, have a connection to Malcom’s missing bride Rosamund.
This book gives me all the gothic mystery vibes. It’s really the first one in the series where we take Stoker and Veronica out of London and place them out on a secluded estate on a small island out near Cornwall. It really gave me murder mystery vibes a la Agatha Christie. The mystery in this one is so fun as well. We don’t really know what happened to Rosamund – all we know is she disappeared on her wedding day years ago and no one has seen from her since. The secluded island is the perfect setting for this – there is something mystical and magical about the place that makes you think Rosamund could have just up and vanished or turned into a ghost. I also loved surprise of Malcolm springing the notion that he’s going to uncover what happened to Rosamund on everyone at the house party – it all feels like such a classic mystery plot. Once again, I feel like I had no idea where the story would take me and I loved finding out what happened and who the murderer was.
As always, Stoker and Veronica seem to unintentionally stumble into this mystery and adventure. More so than in other books, there is a lot of tension between the two of them at the start. I feel like it’s the first we’ve really seen their relationship a bit off kilter. The book opens with Veronica taking a trip to Madeira with Lady Cordelia for a few months, during which time Stoker and Veronica don’t communicate at all. There is strain between them as Veronica won’t say why she took off to Madeira with little notice, and she’s struggling to come to terms with the fact she has feelings for Stoker which she almost blurted out at the end of the last book. The tension between them adds such a fun element to this book – it feels like we’re at a turning point for the slowburn that has been building and building between them over the last few books. It doesn’t help that Tiberius has to needle his brother with Veronica playing his fiancée and flirting with her all the time. The tension between Stoker and Veronica in this book is so worth it though as we finally, finally get the two of them acting on their feelings! I swear, the first time I read this I read the scene where Stoker admits his feelings out loud the first time like 5 times as it was so amazing and I was so excited! It’s also a gut punch of a scene as its one where Veronica, Stoker and Tiberius are in peril and you’re not sure what the outcome will be.
Outside of the progression in Stoker and Veronica’s relationship, I loved how we also got to learn more about Tiberius! I loved when he first appeared in A Perilous Undertaking. He presents such a carefree front, but underneath there is so much more. I also love seeing him and Stoker go to head to head. As much as Stoker claims to loathe his brother, there still is a connection and bond between them, even if he doesn’t want to admit it.
Honestly, this book is so much fun and hit me in the feels with the progression of Stoker and Veronica’s relationship. The cast of characters at the house party is a treat and we get everything from a seance to a poisonous garden to secret hideouts in a huge castle. This is another great addition to the Veronica Speedwell series, and possibly the one that gives me the most emotions.
I truly love the Veronica Speedwell series so much and I’m so glad there are more books coming out. I feel like this series doesn’t get as much recognition as it deserves, but it’s such a fun lady detective mystery series with a great cast of characters, an AMAZING slowburn romance and clever, engaging adventures that there is bound to be something for every reader to like in it. I cannot recommend this series enough so please check it out if you haven’t already.