A Walking Shadow (Backstage Mystery Book 1) by Elizabeth Ireland

May 7, 2019 - 1:58 pm No Comments

I am on the blog tour for A Walking Shadow by Elizabeth Ireland. A historical fiction, murder mystery.  

A Walking Shadow

In 1871, Lillian Nolan accepts a small role in Macbeth, and finally fulfills her dream of becoming an actress. That is until the renowned, but venomous, female star of the production is murdered onstage opening night. When her enraged spirit haunts the theater, Lillian is shocked to discover she can communicate with her. Offered a Faustian bargain in which she will be given talent and expertise way beyond her ability in exchange for uncovering the killer, Lillian can’t resist.

Her quest for the truth causes her to descend into the Underworld, the den of inequity below the streets of Chicago. What Lillian finds soon embroils her in a battle between her passion for performing and control over her own body as it all plays out in a supernatural game of good and evil.

Here is my review.

A Walking Shadow (Backstage Mystery Book 1) by Elizabeth Ireland

Published on 13th February 2019

189 pages

Written like a memoir for her great grandniece Agnes, Lillian Nolan tells the story of her first performance on stage when the famous Irene Davenport dies on stage. One thing I quickly realised was when Lillian was 17 years old, the life of an actress was not a respected trade and they were treated like 2nd rate citizens. You had to be brave to choose that career and have to have a thick thin, to ignore all the snide comments. Lillian was one such girl, not afraid to get what she wanted, she was very headstrong, but even though her life choice was not what her family wanted, she did have a fan in her Grandma.  As you read this story; you realise how alike they both are.

The story opens with the tragic death of Irene Davenport and as Lillian tells her story, the involvement that Lillian plays in solving her murder. Set in Chicago in the 1870’s, the descriptive scenes enable you to get a feel for what it was like at the times and as you follow Lillian down memory lane, you have the feeling that you are there. The supernatural element adds another layer to the story as Lillian has enough trying to perform on stage without the haunting of a diva actress. As Lillian finds more about Irene’s life she gets dragged into the seedy part of Chicago and comes face to face with the criminal aspect and you understand how sheltered her upbringing one.

This was a gentle mystery which draws you in. You can tell that the author has a passion for the theatre and her extensive knowledge helps make the story authentic. If you like historical mysteries with a touch of supernatural than this is a series for you. With two more in the series I cannot wait to see where this series takes me.    

Purchase Links

UK – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Walking-Shadow-Backstage-Mystery-Book-ebook/dp/B07NQM27YG/

US – https://www.amazon.com/walking-shadow-backstage-mystery-book-ebook/dp/B07NQM27YG/

More about the Series


Tagline: Life upon the wicked stage can be deadly.

Set against the backdrop of the Gilded Age, the Backstage Mystery Series stars Lillian Nolan, an unconventional member of Chicago’s upper class who dreams of a career of fortune and fame in the theater. Talented and ambitious, she possesses a hidden skill which she is extremely reluctant to use—the ability to communicate with those who have died and now live in the world of “The Beyond.” 

The series chronicles her adventures in which she continually becomes enmeshed in solving mysteries which often require her accessing the realm of the paranormal. Filled with an incredible cast of characters—factual, fictional, and sometimes non-physical—who either help or hinder her quest for the truth, the stories take place during a a period considered to be the golden age of both acting and spiritualism in America.

Author Bio –

Elizabeth Ireland discovered her passion for theater early. After receiving undergraduate and graduate degrees in Theater, she accepted a teaching position in a vibrant performing arts department at a college in northern Illinois. For ten years, she taught, directed and ran front-of-house operations. American Theater History—particularly that of the 19th century—has always been of particular interest to her.

She has been a quarter-finalist and a semi-finalist for the Don and Gee Nicholl Fellowship in screenwriting sponsored by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Two of her screenplays have been optioned, but remain unproduced. Her nonfiction work, Women of Vision: Ordinary Women, Extraordinary Lives, was published in 2008. Her work has also been published in a collection of paranormal short stories, Paramourtal: Tales of Undying Love and Loving the Undead. She lives in metro Atlanta with her ever-patient husband, and two quirky dachshunds.

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