Genre: Historical Mystery
What a great find! Inspector of the Dead is a well-structured plot, a beautiful delivery of narration and tone, with strong characters imbued with personality and motivation. Progressing moments are well transitioned, and each segment cleanly and cleverly flows from one beat to the next. Liberal sprinkles of British history and intricate relationships between Emily, Becker, Ryan and DeQuincey are rolled up into a hugely entertaining read. I particularly enjoyed that the author did not blatantly provide character exposition and intention. Morrell skillfully guided me along to discover character intent on my own. This story is so absorbing that it will be difficult to bookmark a page if you have an interruption. Don’t miss a sentence because Lord Palmerston tosses in lines that are completely in character, really funny, yet darkly representative of the times. This author is now up on my historical fiction favorites right along with Anna Lee Huber, R. Michael Phillips, Susanna Calkins and Anne Perry.
David Morrell’s MURDER AS A FINE ART was a publishing event. Acclaimed by critics, it made readers feel that they were actually on the fogbound streets of Victorian London. Now the harrowing journey continues in INSPECTOR OF THE DEAD. Thomas De Quincey, infamous for his Confessions of an Opium-Eater,confronts London’s harrowing streets to thwart the assassination of Queen Victoria.
The year is 1855. The Crimean War is raging. The incompetence of British commanders causes the fall of the English government. The Empire teeters. Amid this crisis comes opium-eater Thomas De Quincey, one of the most notorious and brilliant personalities of Victorian England. Along with his irrepressible daughter, Emily, and their Scotland Yard companions, Ryan and Becker, De Quincey finds himself confronted by an adversary who threatens the heart of the nation. This killer targets members of the upper echelons of British society, leaving with each corpse the name of someone who previously attempted to kill Queen Victoria. The evidence indicates that the ultimate victim will be Victoria herself. As De Quincey and Emily race to protect the queen, they uncover long-buried secrets and the heartbreaking past of a man whose lust for revenge has destroyed his soul.
Brilliantly merging historical fact with fiction, Inspector of the Dead is based on actual attempts to assassinate Queen Victoria.