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Wonderful! This has been on my library list almost from the moment I first heard about it. I may just have to move it up on the priority list.


You know I am longing to read this - it may have to be my next non-fiction book! It sounds fantastic.


I found all the detail fascinating. It's an excellent book.

Bride of the Book God

Got this as Christmas present, just waiting for the right mment to dive in.


Mr Whicher was quite an intuitive detective in such early days of the profession wasn't he. Charles Dickens interviewed him several times, in fact, he was slightly obsessed with him!


As you know I loved this book - fancy anyone criticising it for the attention to detail!

I've neglected Wilkie Collins for too long - I don't own but I expect the library does, so he's on my list to look out for at my next visit. Mary Elizabeth Braddon, too.

Dorothy W.

How fascinating to look at the intersection between real life and fiction -- the way the two influenced each other and fed into each other. This makes a good argument for the value of understanding the historical and social context that lies behind literature -- without it, you miss so much.


I don't know why but I thought this was a fiction book! It sounds absolutely fascinating and I've got it on my list... along with Wilkie Collins. I'm really hoping to read one of his books this year!


Sounds like quite the intriguing book, and although I'm not usually a huge fan of crime novels the whole non-fiction aspect of things does make the book even more tempting to pick up!


I almost picked this one up last week, but it had a hideous sticker on it saying "Richard & Judy recommended". If you're outside the UK then you won't know them, but they're monumentally hideous daytime TV morons. I'll have to get someone to nip in, whip the sticker off, and then I'll go and get it :)


Teresa--It's one I moved up my pile and was so glad I did! :)
Litlove--It is a fast and interesting read, too, so I am sure you could fly through it.
Cornflower--I thought she did an excellent job with it all--nicely planned out. I can't wait to see what else she writes.
Bride of the Book God--I hope you enjoy it when you get to it!
Darlene--I thought the whole Dickens angle was really interesting. It seems some people thought he was a little too enamored by Mr Whicher and the detective phenomenon!
BooksPlease--I would love to reread some Wilkie Collins, though I have several unread ones on my shelves. I will certainly read something by him this year, for sure! I would love to reread Lady Audley's Secret, too, though again I have two others of her books to read!
Dorothy--It is fascinating to see the context that so many of these books were written. I love the Victorian period--so many great books. I only mentioned a few of the literary references, there are more in the book--actually lots of good stuff in the book if you get to it anytime soon.
Iliana--It reads like fiction, so I'm not surprised you thought it was at first. It has a great narrative drive. You'll love this and Wilkie Collins when you get to them.
Chelsea--I am a great fan of crime novels, but the crime aspect was only one part of the story. If you are at all interested in the Victorian period, I think you might find other things in the book to make reading it worthwhile.
Zoe--I hate those stickers publishers put on books, too. I am in the US, but whenever Oprah picks a book, they plaster stickers on those. Some publishers just print the logo directly on the cover, which I really hate. Hopefully it only has a sticker you can peel off!

Carl V.

I can certainly understand being gripped by 'detective fever'! There are generally a couple of times a year where all I want to do is read detective/spy/crime books. I'm getting quite the pile built up for when that mood strikes.


My husband recently heard about this and suggested it to me - good choice since I already have it! It sounds really great, and your review is of course, great.


Carl--I often find myself in the mood for a good detective story. I also have a few bins (not just a pile anymore...LOL) that I can choose books from. And I usually have a nice long mental list going...
Tara--I think you'll like it when you get to it. It's nice your husband knows what books you like!

Jackie (Farm Lane Books)

I finished this book last week - it has to be my book of the year so far!

I've just started reading The Moonstone by Wilkie Collins, and am interested to see all the similarities!


I did go and read this based on your review. I do agree with you that Summerscale covered a lot of ground - with so many themes.
I liked it

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