Mogul (The Knickerbocker Club #3)
Zebra / January 31, 2017 / $7.99 print, $4.99 digital
With an opening line like “She never expected to find her former husband in an opium den,” one might think that Mogul, the third installment of Joanna Shupe’s Knickerbocker Club series, might not be the sort of historical romance novel one comes across every day. One would be right. Why is that, one might ask? One asks a good question. Let’s break that down.
First, the titular mogul in question is Calvin Cabot, owner of three different newspapers, passionately dedicated to spreading the truth, even when, maybe especially when that truth is uncomfortable. Knickerbocker fans may feel like the wait has been forever for Calvin to get his own book, and, now that he’s in the spotlight, he does not disappoint. What’s the worst thing that could happen to a man with a reputation for valuing the truth? Toss up, one says, between having a secret of his own and that one lapse in judgement, where he didn’t investigate, and thus, lost everything that mattered? In Mogul, Shupe gives Calvin both.
Second, every Knickerbocker hero meets his match, and Calvin meets his in smart and beautiful Lily Davies, daughter of a wealthy mine owner. While the slender brunette on the cover of this book is lovely, one wonders if it’s not Lily’s cousin, Cora, standing in while Lily, a smart as a whip, curvy blonde, is busy running her late father’s mining company. When Lily and Calvin first met, Lily had yet to take the reins of Davis Mining, purportedly to hold the position until her brother, Tom, comes of age (sure, Lily, you’re holding it for your brother. We believe that. Not like you actually like all that corporate derring-do for yourself.)