This month Victoria Thompson's thirteenth installment of her long-running mystery series hits shelves, Murder on Sisters' Row. So we asked the author to give us a special look at the evolution of her series and the world of the Gaslight Mysteries!
When I started writing the Gaslight Mysteries, set 1890’s New York City, I had no idea that I would discover “the more things change, the more they stay the same.” What has surprised me most about the research I do for the series is that the problems people were dealing with back then are the same problems we’re dealing with today. In Murder on St. Mark’s Place, the murder victim is a young woman whose only sin was trying to find Mr. Right. In those days, young women had just started working outside the home for the first time in history and courtship rituals had suddenly changed to allow men and women to go places together, unchaperoned. The women would go to dangerous places to meet prospective husbands, dance houses where they could partner with eligible men who would buy them drinks. Sometimes they found the man of their dreams, and sometimes they ended up raped or murdered. Just like today.