Sutton, William - 'Lawless and the Devil of Euston Square'
London, 1859. The novice detective, Sergeant Campbell Lawless, a fresh Scotsman who has only been in the capital less than one year stumbles onto the trail of Berwick Skelton, an elusive revolutionary, seemingly determined to bring the city to its knees through a series of very strange but dangerous acts of terrorism. Inspector Wardle, his superior at Scotland Yard is often out of the office and does not communicate well what he is doing, so Lawless has to pursue his own agenda.
LAWLESS AND THE DEVIL OF EUSTON SQUARE was originally published as THE WORMS OF EUSTON SQUARE in a shorter format in 2006. The author appears now to have a three-book contract with a new publisher and has renamed and lengthened his 2006 publication. The new book seems to incorporate a lot of new historical research that greatly improves the storyline but of course increases the number of pages but the author writes with such a lightness of touch that makes you want to keep on reading.
After a lot of exciting diversions and some red herrings the story reaches an exciting conclusion.
This was one of the most atmospheric historical novels I've read in years as its brilliantly researched historical background transports you back into the mid-Victorian era when Prince Albert has just died, Queen Victoria is in mourning and the Prince of Wales is doing some rather naughty things. The feel of the times and living conditions is very well described. I found this a highly imaginative and very entertaining plot and I just could not put it down.
This very interesting story also has some romantic diversions as Campbell Lawless is very frustrated in his new post.
This is the first of a series of Victorian thrillers featuring London policeman, Campbell Lawless. Recommended.
Terry Halligan, England
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