The Silent Cry (William Monk Series #8)

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Overview

Deep in London's filthy, dangerous slums, Victorians transacted their most secret and shameful business. For a price, a man could procure whatever he wanted, but it happened now and then that the price he paid was his life. Now, in sunless Water Lane, respected solicitor Leighton Duff lies dead, kicked and beaten to death. Beside him lies the barely living body of his son, Rhys. The police cannot fathom these brutal assaults, until shrewd investigator William Monk uncovers a connection between them and a series ...
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Westminister, Maryland, U.S.A. 1997 H Hard Cover New in J New jacket 1st ed/1st printing, SIGNED on title page by the author. This book is square, solid, and unread with ... unblemished boards. The dustjacket is shart as a tack in a protective archival Brodart cover. When this book arrives you'll be so happy you'll don your cloak and deerstalker, and with meerschaum (not heroin) pipe in hand, you'll bound the door crying, "The game's afoot! " Read more Show Less

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The Silent Cry (William Monk Series #8)

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Overview

Deep in London's filthy, dangerous slums, Victorians transacted their most secret and shameful business. For a price, a man could procure whatever he wanted, but it happened now and then that the price he paid was his life. Now, in sunless Water Lane, respected solicitor Leighton Duff lies dead, kicked and beaten to death. Beside him lies the barely living body of his son, Rhys. The police cannot fathom these brutal assaults, until shrewd investigator William Monk uncovers a connection between them and a series of rapes and beatings of local prostitutes. Then it begins to seem shockingly clear that young Rhys Duff must have killed his own father. In a heartstopping courtroom drama, the Crown's case against Rhys Duff, accused of patricide, begins its inexorable unfolding.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Although lacking the panache of last year's Weighted in the Balance, William Monk's eighth outing adds to Perry's convincing yet disturbing picture of early Victorian London. Hired to find men whose evening entertainment runs to raping and beating prostitutes in the slum of St. Giles, Monk soon brushes up against murder: Leighton Duff, a respectable solicitor, was found beaten to death in St. Giles, with his son, Rhys Duff, nearby, barely alive. Despite his receiving excellent care from Hester Latterly, the nurse with whom Monk shares a volatile relationship, physical and emotional injuries have reduced Rhys to virtual silence: he can't speak and his hands are broken. Inquiries conducted by Monk and by the police suggest that Rhys was in the right place to beat the women (which interests police not at all) and murder Leighton (which interests them greatly). But, as in other Perry mysteries, it takes more than one perspective to reveal the truth, and Latterly maintains that Rhys, despite his displays of inarticulate rage, is innocent. When Latterly recruits barrister Sir Oliver Rathbone to Rhys's cause, and Sir Oliver naturally hires Monk to gather evidence, the investigator must question what he thinks he knows. Although the young man's silence and the suspicions surrounding him are ultimately resolved and tied neatly into the plot, readers may feel they are bearing the weight of this contrivance like so much overpacked luggage. (Oct.)
Library Journal
Prolific murder-mystery writer Perry has evaded the scientific precision of modern forensic fact-finding by weaving current-day issues and characters into a richly detailed Victorian-era milieu. One man is found murdered and another on the edge of death in the notorious London slum called St. Giles. Although it looks as if they may have engaged in a mortal fight, they are in fact father and son from a well-to-do family. Later, links develop between these men and a series of violent rapes of prostitutes. Hester Latterly, nurse and protector of the surviving son, Rhys, counterbalances detective William Monk in their mutual pursuit of the truth. By the novel's end, revelations of corruption and depravity break through the severe conventions of upper-class Victorian prudery in a dramatic courtroom scene. Perry followers and others will enjoy this new addition. Highly recommended.Michelle Foyt, Fairfield P.L., Ct.
Washington Post
"The brainy, passionate Latterly is good company, as ever."
Cleveland Plain Dealer
"Monk is a marvelously dark, brooding creation, driven by his own priate demons."
Los Angeles Times
"The action careers between the low-and high-born in Victorian society. The denouncement is shocking, and the characters are so richly drawn that you'll miss them when they're gone."
NY Times Book Review
"Monk and Hester...keep us enthralled with their bold intellectual assaults on the hypocrisy of Victorian moral standards. With her grimly detailed descriptions of the match factories, sweatshops, paupers' hospitals, and tenement 'rookeries' crowded into these slums, Perry brings a rank sense of reality to the wretched living conditions of the working poor... Her early-Victorian series...has deepened and darkened its insights into the social evils that burdened London's underclasses."
Cincinnati Post
"Reads like a firsthand account of the life and customs of that distant time."
Kirkus Reviews
It's a long way from sheltered Ebury Street to the disreputable neighborhood of St. Giles, but solicitor Leighton Duff and his son Rhys must have had their reasons for making the journey—though those reasons may never be known, since Duff has been beaten to death in Water Lane, and Rhys, beaten nearly to death himself, can't gesture or speak. What brought the two men to St. Giles? Who beat them so savagely? And what do they have to do with a series of equally brutal rapes of neighborhood factory women moonlighting as prostitutes? Having posed these tantalizing questions and having set Crimean veteran Hester Latterly to nursing Rhys and inquiry agent William Monk on the trail of the rapists, Perry switches gears to mellifluous outrage, railing inertly against the hypocrisies of Victorian gentlemen who insist on proper wives while taking their pleasures wherever they find them, and fuming about the impossibility of winning a prosecution for rape. When the rapes and murder converge with Monk's mounting evidence—evidence indicating that Rhys was one of the rapists and that he killed the father who was trying to stop him—the stage is set for one of Perry's uniquely unconvincing trial scenes. But Hester manages to spring a climactic surprise as stunning as it is unlikely. As overblown as any of Perry's recent historical forays (Weighed in the Balance, 1996, etc.), but fueled by the painful intensity of Rhys Duff's silent cry.
From the Publisher
“[Perry’s] early-Victorian series . . . has deepened and darkened its insights into the social evils that burdened London’s underclasses.”—The New York Times Book Review

“The action careers between the low- and high-born in Victorian society. The denouement is shocking, and the characters are so richly drawn that you’ll miss them when they’re gone.”—Los Angeles Times

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780449908488
  • Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 10/7/1997
  • Series: William Monk Series , #8
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 361
  • Product dimensions: 6.64 (w) x 9.55 (h) x 1.25 (d)

Meet the Author

Anne Perry
ANNE PERRY is the bestselling author of the World War I novels No Graves as Yet, Shoulder the Sky, Angels in the Gloom, At Some Disputed Barricade, and We Shall Not Sleep; as well as five holiday novels: A Christmas Journey, A Christmas Visitor, A Christmas Guest, A Christmas Secret, and A Christmas Beginning. She is also the creator of two acclaimed series set in Victorian England. Her William Monk novels include Dark Assassin, The Shifting Tide, and Death of a Stranger. The popular novels featuring Thomas and Charlotte Pitt include Long Spoon Lane, Seven Dials, and Southampton Row. Her short story "Heroes" won an Edgar Award. Anne Perry lives in Scotland. Visit her website at anneperry.net.

Biography

Born in London in October 1938, Anne Perry was plagued with health problems as a young child. So severe were her illnesses that at age eight she was sent to the Bahamas to live with family friends in the hopes that the warmer climate would improve her health. She returned to her family as a young teenager, but sickness and frequent moves had interrupted her formal education to the extent that she was finally forced to leave school altogether. With the encouragement of her supportive parents, she was able to "fill in the gaps" with voracious reading, and her lack of formal schooling has never held her back.

Although Perry held down many jobs—working at various times as a retail clerk, stewardess, limousine dispatcher, and insurance underwriter—the only thing she ever seriously wanted to do in life was to write. (In her '20s, she started putting together the first draft of Tathea, a fantasy that would not see print until 1999.) At the suggestion of her stepfather, she began writing mysteries set in Victorian London; and in 1979, one of her manuscripts was accepted for publication. The book was The Cater Street Hangman, an ingenious crime novel that introduced a clever, extremely untidy police inspector named Thomas Pitt. In this way an intriguing mystery series was born…along with a successful writing career.

In addition to the Thomas and Charlotte Pitt novels, Perry crafts darker, more layered Victorian mysteries around the character of London police detective William Monk, whose memory has been impaired by a coach accident. (Monk debuted in 1990's The Face of a Stranger.) She also writes historical novels set during the First World War (No Graves as Yet, Shoulder the Sky, etc.) and holiday-themed mysteries (A Christmas Journey, A Christmas Secret, etc), and her short stories have been included in several anthologies.

Good To Know

Some fun and fascinating outtakes from our interview with Anne Perry:

The first time I made any money telling a story I was four and a half years old—golden hair, blue eyes, a pink smocked dress, and neat little socks and shoes. I walked home from school (it was safe then) with my lunchtime sixpence unspent. A large boy, perhaps 12 or 13, stopped me. He was carrying a stick and threatened to hit me if I didn't give him my sixpence. I told him a long, sad story about how poor we were—no food at home, not even enough money for shoes! He gave me his half crown—five times sixpence! It's appalling! I didn't think of it as lying, just escaping with my sixpence. How on earth he could have believed me I have no idea. Perhaps that is the knack of a good story—let your imagination go wild, pile on the emotions—believe it yourself, evidence to the contrary be damned. I am not really proud of that particular example!

I used to live next door to people who had a tame dove. They had rescued it when it broke its wing. The wing healed, but it never learned to fly again. I used to walk a mile or so around the village with the dove. Its little legs were only an inch or two long, so it got tired, then it would ride on my head. Naturally I talked to it. It was a very nice bird. I got some funny looks. Strangers even asked me if I knew there was a bird on my head! Who the heck did they think I was talking to? Of course I knew there was a bird on my head. I'm not stupid—just a writer, and entitled to be a little different. I'm also English, so that gives me a second excuse!

On the other hand I'm not totally scatty. I like maths, and I used to love quadratic equations. One of the most exciting things that happened to me was when someone explained non-Euclidean geometry to me, and I suddenly saw the infinite possibilities in lateral thinking! How could I have been so blind before?

Here are some things I like—and one thing I don't:

  • I love wild places, beech trees, bluebell woods, light on water—whether the light is sunlight, moonlight, or lamplight; and whether the water is ocean, rain, snow, river, mist, or even a puddle.

  • I love the setting sun in autumn over the cornstooks.

  • I love to eat raspberries, pink grapefruit, crusty bread dipped in olive oil.

  • I love gardens where you seem to walk from "room to room," with rambling roses and vines climbing into the trees and sudden vistas when you turn corners.

  • I love white swans and the wild geese flying overhead.

  • I dislike rigidity, prejudice, ill-temper, and perhaps above all, self-righteousness.

  • I love laughter, mercy, courage, hope. I think that probably makes me pretty much like most people. But that isn't bad.
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      1. Also Known As:
        Juliet Hulme
      2. Hometown:
        Portmahomack, Ross-shire, U.K
      1. Date of Birth:
        October 28, 1938
      2. Place of Birth:
        Blackheath, London England

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    Customer Reviews

    Average Rating 4.5
    ( 10 )
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    Sort by: Showing all of 10 Customer Reviews
    • Posted October 15, 2011

      Silent Cry

      I recommend reading everything Anne Perry writes. I have read all of her books.
      MaggieMN

      1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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    • Anonymous

      Posted February 21, 2000

      Entertaining but flawed

      Quite entertaining, as usual, for those who enjoy a Victorian novel. But the ending is seriously flawed - think about it when you finish.

      1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
    • Posted September 19, 2011

      USUAL ENTERTAINMENT

      Enjoyed the book, but previous reviewer was right. Ending was a disappointment. Like she said, "Oh, heck, I'm tired of messing about. Let's get this one over with! Let the clues fall where they may."

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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      Posted April 17, 2011

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      Posted October 12, 2009

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