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From Barnes & NobleThe Barnes & Noble Review
The Whitechapel Conspiracy is bestselling author Anne Perry's 21st novel featuring the beloved husband-and-wife team Thomas and Charlotte Pitt. Fans of Victorian England will find Perry in top form as she richly details the period and populates it with wholly believable characters. Here her concerns are wonderfully balanced between showing the vast differences in social classes and plotting an involving mystery that explodes into full-blown political conspiracy.
In 1892, Thomas Pitt, superintendent of the Bow Street police station, is caught up in the trial of John Adinet, a soldier who has allegedly murdered a close friend, antiquarian Martin Fetters. Although no motive can be established and the evidence is entirely circumstantial, Pitt’s testimony is a strong indictment, and Adinet is found guilty and sentenced to be executed in three weeks. Shortly thereafter, Pitt finds that he has made powerful enemies in London’s high society. He is discharged from his command and sent to the slums of the East End on an undercover assignment to seek out anarchists who may not even exist.
Adinet was a member of an “Inner Circle” made up of prominent men dedicated to their own gains. Soon they use all their influence to wreak vengeance on Pitt, separating him from his wife, Charlotte, who decides that she will take matters into her own hands until Pitt’s reputation is restored. Following their own investigations, Thomas and Charlotte delve into the secrets and lies behind Whitechapel’s recent Ripper case, where several murders might be connected to the Prince of Wales himself.
Perry's protagonists and villains are all credible in their own fashion, and they are often placed in situations that are exciting and outrageous while still remaining plausible. Perry’s unique outlook on the Ripper case and its effect on English society is an intriguing one, especially since it is only one engaging subplot among many. Each thread of the story works to the advantage of the greater whole as the separate investigations lead into a head-on collision marked by violence and mayhem. Perry’s stylish delivery adds new texture to the Victorian scenery, and as the past comes alive in this fast-paced thriller, the reader should be ready for a genuinely diverting and entertaining experience. The Whitechapel Conspiracy is a must-read, don't-miss extravaganza that mystery fans will be talking about for quite a while to come.
Tom Piccirilli is the author of eight novels, including Hexes and Shards, and his Felicity Grove mystery series, consisting of The Dead Past and Sorrow's Crown. He has sold more than 100 stories to the anthologies Future Crimes, Bad News, The Conspiracy Files, and Best of the American West II. An omnibus collection of 40 stories titled Deep into That Darkness Peering is also available. Tom divides his time between New York City and Estes Park, Colorado.