Pentecost Alley (Thomas and Charlotte Pitt Series #16)

Pentecost Alley (Thomas and Charlotte Pitt Series #16)

4.8 6
by Anne Perry
     
 

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The murder of a prostitute named Ada McKinley in a bedroom on decrepit Pentecost Alley should occasion no stir in Victoria’s great metropolis, but under the victim’s body, the police find a Hellfire Club badge inscribed with the name “Finlay Fitzjames”—a name that instantly draws Superintendent Thomas Pitt into the case. Finlay’s

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Overview

The murder of a prostitute named Ada McKinley in a bedroom on decrepit Pentecost Alley should occasion no stir in Victoria’s great metropolis, but under the victim’s body, the police find a Hellfire Club badge inscribed with the name “Finlay Fitzjames”—a name that instantly draws Superintendent Thomas Pitt into the case. Finlay’s father—immensely wealthy, powerful, and dangerous—refuses to consider the possibility that his son has been in Ada McKinley’s bed. The implication is clear: Pitt is to arrest someone other than Finlay Fitzjames for Ada’s demise. But Thomas Pitt is not a man to be intimidated, and with the help of his quick-witted wife, Charlotte, he stubbornly pursues his investigation—one that twists and turns like London’s own ancient streets.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“Vibrant . . alluring . . . It is [Perry’s] fine-bladed outrage that draws the blood in this series.”—The New York Times Book Review

“Difficult to put down . . . tricky and beautifully paced.”—The Virginian-Pilot

“Stands as one of her most intricately constructed plots . . . Perry packs a triple wallop into the final pages, one climax following another.”—Chicago Sun-Times
 
“Unfolds in a masterly fashion, sure to satisfy devotees of the classic puzzle.”—Houston Chronicle
 
“Beautifully crafted, filled with the gaslit atmosphere of a bygone world.”—Cosmopolitan

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
The 16th Thomas and Charlotte Pitt mystery demonstrates Perry's trademark skill for enhancing well-designed mystery plots with convincing historical settings and cleverly drawn relationships among characters. In this outing, Pitt, last seen in Traitors Gate, tackles a case that could cost him his career. As it has been only two years since the unsolved Jack the Ripper murders, the Home Office anxiously anticipates the speedy arrest of the person who has murdered a Whitechapel prostitute with her own stocking. Finlay FitzJames, a young diplomat who is the son of a powerful merchant banker, is the prime suspect, even though the evidence against him is circumstantial: an old Hellfire Club badge, inscribed with Finlay's name, was found under the prostitute in bed, and cufflinks with his initials were discovered in the room. While Pitt grapples with this politically sensitive case, his sister-in-law, Emily Radley, makes friends with Finlay's younger sister, a social butterfly named Tallulah. Thanks to Pitt's diligence (and Emily's and Tallulah's meddling), the case is closed. Or so it seems until another very similar murder occurs. Whitechapel residents are terrified anew, Parliament is filled with grumblings, the Queen conveys her displeasure and newspaper reporters are turning the investigation into a case study in police incompetence and corruption. As Perry edges toward her surprise ending, she crafts her tale with elegance, narrative depth and gratifying scope. BOMC main selection. (Mar.)
Library Journal
Thomas and Charlotte Pitt take on Jack the Ripper in this latest in Perry's best-selling Victorian mystery series.
Kirkus Reviews
Superintendent Thomas Pitt's rise to commander of the Bow Street station has carried him above the sordid run of London crime, but when Whitechapel prostitute Ada McKinley is tortured and strangled two years after the reign of Jack the Ripper, a cufflink and a button from the defunct Hellfire Club on the scene make the case sensitive enough to bring in Pitt. Both articles are traced to Finlay FitzJames, a young diplomat whose wealthy, ruthless father Augustus's massive contempt for Pitt and his mission casts his son in an even more suspicious light. Pitt, keenly aware of the pressure to arrest someone else, is relieved when his own wife Charlotte and her sister Emily Radley, insinuating themselves into the confidence of Finlay's sister Tallulah, uncover an alibi Finlay cannot make public—and even more relieved when he extracts a confession from a pimp that seems to close the case. A trial follows, as well as a speedy execution—and then, to Pitt's horror, there's a second murder exactly like the first, linked to Finlay by still another scrap of haberdashery. If Finlay is innocent, who is so determined to incriminate him? And if he's guilty, how can Pitt bring him to book when he's being ridiculed all over town for hanging the wrong man?

Repetitious and yet perfunctory in probing the suspects; and bits of the truth, at least, are obvious from the beginning. Still, the mystification, and the intensity of Pitt's dilemma, are genuine. Altogether, Perry's best book since Defend and Betray

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780345514196
Publisher:
Random House Publishing Group
Publication date:
10/04/2011
Series:
Thomas and Charlotte Pitt Series, #16
Pages:
416
Sales rank:
195,293
Product dimensions:
5.15(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.86(d)

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