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The notorious Opium-Eater returns in the sensational climax to David Morrell's acclaimed Victorian mystery trilogy.
1855. The railway has irrevocably altered English society, effectively changing geography and fueling the industrial revolution by shortening distances between cities: a whole day's journey can now be covered in a matter of hours. People marvel at their new freedom.
But train travel brings new dangers as well, with England's first death by train recorded on the very first day of railway operations in 1830. Twenty-five years later, England's first train murder occurs, paralyzing London with the unthinkable when a gentleman is stabbed to death in a safely locked first-class passenger compartment.
In the next compartment, the brilliant opium-eater Thomas De Quincey and his quick-witted daughter, Emily, discover the homicide in a most gruesome manner. Key witnesses and also resourceful sleuths, they join forces with their allies in Scotland Yard, Detective Ryan and his partner-in-training, Becker, to pursue the killer back into the fogbound streets of London, where other baffling murders occur. Ultimately, De Quincey must confront two ruthless adversaries: this terrifying enemy, and his own opium addiction which endangers his life and his tormented soul.
Ruler of the Night is a riveting blend of fact and fiction which, like master storyteller David Morrell's previous De Quincey novels, "evokes Victorian London with such finesse that you'll hear the hooves clattering on cobblestones, the racket of dustmen, and the shrill calls of vendors" (Entertainment Weekly).
About the Author
David Morrell is an Edgar and Anthony Award finalist, a Nero and Macavity winner, and recipient of the prestigious career-achievement ThrillerMaster award from the International Thriller Writers. He has written twenty-nine works of fiction, which have been translated into thirty languages. He is also a former literature professor at the University of Iowa and received his PhD from Pennsylvania State University.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
AudioBook Review: Stars: Overall: 4 Narration: 4 Story: 4 Not knowing what to expect, I had some thoughts that I would find a present and palpable sense of Victorian England, a fast moving technological and invention-laden playground with all of the conflicted feelings and excitement that walks hand in hand with those changes. What I didn’t expect was to be instantly thrust into the story and lives of Thomas and his daughter Emily, as they deal with Thomas’ struggle to focus and limit his opiod use, a new mode of travel (the train) and, of course, the insertion of a murder (the first on England’s railways). Were it not for the demons that Thomas battles with, semi-successfully, and the intervention from his daughter to keep funds in place and Thomas seeking for ‘more’ and ‘better’ for himself, he would be a pitiable creature, brilliant but tortured (similar to Sherlock of modern day era with Cumberbatch as the man himself). She is brilliant, but perhaps a bit subdued by society’s view of her as a woman, although clever and perfectly well-suited to be her father’s keeper. With Ryan and Becker, two London policemen also enamored of Emily, there is plenty happening in this story: all of it intriguing. From murder to sabotage, a fleeing German doctor and the Russians chasing him, and DeQuincey himself, the intersecting elements playing in kept me engaged and involved, wanting more of the twists, turns and clues. Narration for this audiobook is provided by Neil Dickson, and his clear understanding of delivery from a suspense standpoint, his efforts to clearly present each character with a unique tone and cadence, and the subtle change in tone added greatly to the story, presenting moments of ‘pay attention now’ without giving away either major plot points or clues. Well suited to the story, he added a level of veracity that presented the facts, emotions and even far-reaching ‘treatments’ of the day with a flair that intrigues and interests listeners, while keeping the plot, as written, clearly in the forefront. A wonderful book to listen to, I’m curious now about the earlier in th series, to see if I can’t find more about the genesis of DeQuincey’s addiction and demons, and see if this book continues to fit in the mold of a series well-loved by many. I received an AudioBook copy of the title from Hachette Audio for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.
Really nice story. Ties up lose ends in his our two novals based on this interesting character and his daughter. This story is based upon fact and is mainly about a murder on England's first train system. There are plenty of sub stories that tie back to the author's previous two stories and then combine into the main story line. A really nice ending. To bad there won't be a forth book.
Ruler of the Night is the third book by David Morrell in the Thomas De Quincey series. It is a well written and involving mystery that takes advantage of history to produce a fascinating book. It is 1855 and our protagonist and his daughter are staying at the residence of the English Prime Minister. All the while, Mr. De Quincey, an opium addict, is trying to become a reformed devotee, without too much success. His daughter and Thomas De Quincey are on a train when somebody is murdered. The reaction is predictably horrific and most are aghast. Two constables from the previous novels are called in to solve this crime. The police are attracted to Mr. De Quincey’s daughter in part because she does display nor fit the typical Victorian characteristics. David Morrell is a gifted mystery and thriller writer who in this case has written a most involving, liberating, and insightful murder on a train mystery. Buy a ticket and spend some time in Victorian England.