Cain His Brother (William Monk Series #6)

Cain His Brother (William Monk Series #6)

by Anne Perry

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780345514028
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 01/26/2010
Series: William Monk Series , #6
Pages: 432
Sales rank: 258,184
Product dimensions: 5.10(w) x 7.90(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

Anne Perry is the bestselling author of two acclaimed series set in Victorian England: the William Monk novels, including Blind Justice and A Sunless Sea, the Charlotte and Thomas Pitt novels, including Death on Blackheath and Midnight at Marble Arch. She is also the author of a series of five World War I novels, as well as eleven holiday novels, most recently A New York Christmas, and a historical novel, The Sheen on the Silk, set in the Ottoman Empire. Anne Perry lives in Scotland and Los Angeles.

Hometown:

Portmahomack, Ross-shire, U.K

Date of Birth:

October 28, 1938

Place of Birth:

Blackheath, London England

Read an Excerpt

“MR. MONK?” she said, then took a deep breath. “Mr. William Monk?”
 
He turned from the desk where he had been sitting, and rose to his feet. The landlady must have let her through the outer chamber. “Yes ma’am?” he said inquiringly.
 
She took another step into the room, ignoring her huge crinoline skirts as they touched against the table. Her clothes were well cut and fashionable without ostentation, but she seemed to have donned them in some haste and without attention to detail. The bodice did not quite match the skirt, and the wide bow of her bonnet was knotted rather than tied. Her face with its short strong nose and brave mouth betrayed considerable nervousness.
 
But Monk was used to that. People who sought the services of an agent of inquiry were almost always in some predicament which was too serious, or too embarrassing, to have dealt with through the more ordinary channels.
 
“My name is Genevieve Stonefield,” she began. Her voice quivered a little. “Mrs. Angus Stonefield,” she amended. “It is about my husband that I must consult you.”
 
With a woman of her age, which he placed between thirty and thirty-five, it most usually was; or else a minor theft, an unsatisfactory household servant, occasionally a debt. With older women it was an errant child or an unsuitable match in prospect. But Genevieve Stonefield was a most attractive woman, not only in her warm coloring and dignified deportment, but in the frankness and humor suggested in her face. He imagined most men would find her greatly appealing. Indeed, his first instinct was to do so himself. He squashed it, knowing bitterly the cost of past misjudgments.
 
“Yes, Mrs. Stonefield,” he replied, moving from the desk into the middle of the room, which he had designed to make people feel at ease—or more accurately, Hester Latterly had persuaded him to do so. “Please sit down.” He indicated one of the large, padded armchairs across the red-and-blue Turkey rug from his own. It was a bitter January, and there was a fire burning briskly in the hearth, not only for warmth but for the sense of comfort it produced. “Tell me what disturbs you, and how you believe I may help.” He sat in the other chair opposite her as soon as courtesy permitted.
 
She did not bother to rearrange her skirts; they billowed around her in exactly the way they had chanced to fall, hoops awry and showing one slender, high-booted ankle.
 
Having steeled herself to take the plunge, she had no need of further invitation, but began straightaway, leaning forward a little, staring at him gravely.
 
“Mr. Monk, in order for you to understand my anxiety, I must tell you something of my husband and his circumstances. I apologize for taking up your time in this manner, but without this knowledge, what I tell you will make little sense.”
 
Monk made an effort to appear as if he listened. It was tedious, and in all probability quite unnecessary, but he had learned, through error, to allow people to say what they wished before reaching the purpose of their visit. If nothing else, it permitted them a certain element of self-respect in a circumstance where they found themselves obliged to ask for help in an acutely private matter, and of someone most of them regarded as socially inferior by dint of the very fact that he earned his living. Their reasons were usually painful, and they would have preferred to have kept the secret.
 
When he had been a policeman such delicacy would have been irrelevant, but now he had no authority, and he would be paid only according to his client’s estimate of his success.
 
Mrs. Stonefield began in a low voice. “My husband and I have been married for fourteen years, Mr. Monk, and I knew him for a year before that. He was always the gentlest and most considerate of men, without giving the impression of being easily swayed. No one has ever found him less than honorable in all his dealings, both personal and professional, and he has never sought to take advantage of others or gain by their misfortune.” She stopped, realizing—perhaps from Monk’s face—that she was speaking too much. His features had never concealed his feelings, especially those of impatience, anger or scorn. It had served him ill at times.
 
“Do you suspect him of some breach in his otherwise excellent character, Mrs. Stonefield?” he asked with as much concern as he was able to pretend. It was beginning to appear that her interesting face covered a most uninteresting mind.
 
“No, Mr. Monk,” she said a little more sharply, but the fear was dark in her eyes. “I am afraid he has been done to death. I wish you to find out for me.” In spite of her desperate words, she did not look up at him. “Nothing you can do will help Angus now,” she continued quietly. “But since he has disappeared, and there is no trace of him, he is presumed by the law simply to have deserted us. I have five children, Mr. Monk, and without Angus, his business will very rapidly cease to provide for us.”
 
Suddenly the matter became real, and genuinely urgent. He no longer saw her as an overwordy woman fussing over some fancied offense, but one with a profound cause for the fear in her eyes.
 
“Have you reported his absence to the police?” he asked.
 
Her eyes flickered up to his. “Oh yes. I spoke to a Sergeant Evan. He was most kind, but he could do nothing to help me, because I have no proof that Angus did not go of his own will. It was Sergeant Evan who gave me your name.”
 
“I see.” John Evan had been Monk’s most loyal friend at the time of his own trouble, and would not have dismissed this woman could he have helped her. “How long since you saw or heard from your husband, Mrs. Stonefield?” he asked gravely.
 
The shadow of a smile crossed her features and was gone. Perhaps it was a reflection in the change in his own expression.
 
“Three days, Mr. Monk,” she said quietly. “I know that is not long, and he has been away from home often before, and for longer, sometimes up to a week. But this is different. Always before he has informed me, and left provision for us, and of course he left instructions for Mr. Arbuthnot at his place of business. Never before has he missed an appointment, or failed to leave authority and direction so Mr. Arbuthnot might act in his absence.” She leaned forward, almost unaware of the charming tilting of the hoops of her skirt. “He did not expect to be gone, Mr. Monk, and he has contacted no one!”
 
He felt a considerable sympathy for her, but the most practical way he could help was to learn as many of the facts as she was able to give him.
 
“At what time of the day did you last see him?” he asked.
 
“At breakfast, about eight o’clock in the morning,” she replied. “That was January the eighteenth.”
 
It was now the twenty-first.
 
“Did he say where he intended going, Mrs. Stonefield?”
 
She took a deep breath, and he saw her folded hands in her lap clasp each other more firmly in their neat white gloves. “Yes, Mr. Monk. He went from home to his place of business. From there he told Mr. Arbuthnot that he was going to see his brother.”
 
“Did he call upon his brother often?” he asked. It seemed an unremarkable occurrence.
 
“He was in the habit of visiting him at irregular intervals,” she replied. She looked up, staring at him intently, as if the meaning of this were so vital to her she could not believe it would not have the same impact on him. “As long as I have known him,” she added, her voice dropping and becoming husky. “You see, they are twins.”
 
“It is not uncommon for brothers to visit each other, Mrs. Stonefield.” He remarked it only because he could see no reason for her white face, or her tense body as she sat uncomfortably on the edge of her chair. “Of course, you have been in touch with the other Mr. Stonefield and asked if your husband arrived safely, at what time, and in what circumstances he left?” It was barely a question. He had already assumed the answer.
 
“No …” The word was no more than a whisper.
 
“What?”
 
“No,” she repeated with despair, her eyes wide, blue-gray and burningly direct. “Angus’s brother Caleb is everything he is not—violent, brutal, dangerous, an outcast even among the underworld along the river beyond Limehouse, where he lives.” She gave a shuddering sigh. “I used to beg Angus not to keep seeing him, but in spite of everything Caleb did, he felt that he could not abandon him.” A shadow crossed her face. “There is something very special about being a twin, I suppose. I confess, it is not something I understand.” She shook her head a little, as if denying her own anguish. “Please, Mr. Monk, will you find out what happened to my husband for me? I …” She bit her lip, but her eyes did not waver. “I shall need to know your terms in advance. My resources are limited.”
 
“I will make inquiries, Mrs. Stonefield.” He spoke before he considered the implications for his own financial status. “Then when I report their results to you, we can make arrangements accordingly. I shall need certain information from you in order to begin.”
 

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Cain His Brother (William Monk Series #6) 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 12 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I suspected the answer from the start , but it's still one of the best mysteries I've ever read. Wish author had tied up loose ends redrusilllahowever .
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is simply amazing. I read it in a weekend, and I had to force myself to sleep from saturday to sunday, Because i wanted to stay all night reading it. The book captivate me from the very beginning. Monk and Hester are incredible characters fulls of mysteries and secrets, and I simply love Oliver Rathbone, he is brilliant. The twins tragedy is also very well writen. Very good novel, y really recomend it
delphimo on LibraryThing 5 months ago
Anne Perry's William Monk series set in England after the Crimean War follows the investigations by William Monk. Many of the characters appear in each of the books: Hester and Lady Callandra. In this episode, Monk tries to find a missing husband. The man, Angus Stonefield, is the picture of an ideal man. Angus is kind and loving and loyal and honest. His twin brother, Caleb Stone, is the exact opposite. The two men resemble Dr. Jekyl and Mr. Hyde. Everyone believes that Caleb has murdered Angus, and Caleb is arrested and brought to trial. In the background, Hester and Lady Callandra fight a typhoid epidemic. Perry weaves the two story lines in a presentation of the woes of the poor. The surprise ending is foreshadowed throughout the story.
corglacier7 on LibraryThing 5 months ago
Another good entry in the Monk series, although one of the lesser books in my opinion. The plot twist is a little awkwardly implemented and sudden, although the issues it raises about the sheer lack of knowledge, understanding, and treatment of mental illness in the mid-Victorian era are definitely worth considering, and might explain some of it.Hester and Monk are almost excessively touchy after the sudden moment of vulnerability and honesty they shared during the events of "Sins of the Wolf". It's a slightly odd note, but not entirely unthinkable based on their personalities and where they are in their evolution as people, but the response seems a just a touch too vehement. However, Monk suffers for his attempt to return to his old ways and preconceptions regarding women in the subplot that also deftly brings up some further issues from his past, so that's a nice touch to kick off the next level of his evolution as a character. "Cain" isn't the best entry in the series, and especially falls a little flat coming right after the wonderful "Wolf", but it's still a pretty decent read.
Kirconnell on LibraryThing 5 months ago
Don't you love it when you finish a book that makes you feel good? One that makes you feel satisfied like eating a meal with all your favorite foods. Well, this book did that for me. I walked around all day smiling and thinking what a good book it was. Ms. Perry has a gift for recreating Victorian London for her readers. She does just that in Cain His Brother, but there is more. In her William Monk series it isn't always the plot that I look for. I love watching Monk's evolution as he seeks to rediscover his past and his personality. Monk inhabits a grittier London than Thomas and Charlotte Pitt. Although both series involve murders the Monk books expose just a little more of the darker underside of human nature. In Cain His Brother Monk faces two mysteries, one professional and one personal. You can feel his frustration as he seeks answers to both because failure isn't an option that William considers acceptable. Check this series out. I don't think that you will be disappointed. Recommended.
dallenbaugh on LibraryThing 5 months ago
Another William Monk and Hester Latterly novel. Perry seems to change back and forth between the characters as to how much trouble they run into in their lives with the other character often set up to bail them out of the situation. In this story, William Monk runs into trouble with Hester helping him out if it. There are several other story lines going on with the main one being the interesting situation involving the twin brothers,Angus and Caleb. The resolution does not happen until the last few pages. Memory, or lack thereof, always plays an important part in this series, which I find fascinating in light of my reading [Moonwalking with Einstein] by Joshua Foer, an excellent non fiction book about memory. A criticism of this and other Anne Perry books is their tendency to go on just a little too long. I also agree the conflict between Hester and Monk seems forced this time out.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Suspenseful to the end. I like the way the author develops her characters. I'm sure I'll enjoy the book even more the next time I read it.
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pbg More than 1 year ago
Loved it. I hope Anne Perry keeps writing the Monk series for a long time.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Linda43 More than 1 year ago
This may be her best one ever. Couldn't put it down.