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Murder as a Fine Art

by David Morrell

Other authors: Peggy Leith Anderson (Proofreader), William Drennan (Copy editor)

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Thomas De Quincey (1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
6424831,839 (3.95)54
"Thomas De Quincey, infamous for his memoir, 'Confessions of an English Opium-Eater', is the major suspect in a series of ferocious mass murders identical to ones that terrorized London forty-three years earlier...Desperate to clearl his name but crippled by opium addiction, De Quincey is aided by his devoted daughter Emily and a pair of determined Scotland Yard detectives." --inside front cover.… (more)
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» See also 54 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 48 (next | show all)
1854 and London is again hit with a spate of murders that seem to be a copycat of the Ratcliffe Highway murders of 1811. Thomas De Quincey, famed for his 'Confessions of an English Opium-Eater', is decreed to be the main suspect. Can the De Quinceys with the help of D.I. Ryan and Constable Becker find the murderer and determine his motives.
Really enjoyed this story, like the characters and got involved in the telling. I look forward to reading the next in the series. ( )
  Vesper1931 | Jul 29, 2021 |
This is one of those fully realized books that worked for me on pretty much every level. The attention to detail is incredible but it is not obtained at the cost of plot or action. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book and felt as if I had been transported back to 1850s London. ( )
  MarkMad | Jul 14, 2021 |
Oh my, what an awesome book this is.

And it all started when I read about the follow up book on the web and that this author wrote the original Rambo novel. I was like, there was a novel to this movie? Oh well, that must be trash literature then (thought the first Rambo movie was great).

Anyway, so I bought this book, because you can't judge without having read and I am glad I read it because I absolutely enjoyed it from the first to the last page. My fear that this will be some steampunk crap was luckily extinguished early on. It is a classic detective story, playing during the Victorian time in London.

I am now really looking forward to the next book in this series and I am also intrigued by De Quincey "Confessions of an English Opium-Eater" and want to read that too. ( )
  gullevek | Dec 15, 2020 |
Murder as a Fine Art is exactly the kind of book I love. An historical mystery/thriller with just the right elements for it to have one leg in the horror genre. The opening chapter of the book is so shocking, it's like reading about a murder committed in our modern times. Hard to believe that it occurred in Victorian times. From the moment I started reading, I knew this was the book for me.

What I found most interesting was the criminology aspect of the book. The action takes place just ten years after the newly established detective bureau of the Scotland Yard had its detectives educated in France by the father of modern criminology, Eugene Francois Vidocq. There is a reason that all of these television shows, such as CSI and the new Hannibal, are so popular. We are fascinated by the solving of crimes. Morrell fills the bill with his meticulous investigator, Sean Ryan and his assistant, Constable Becker.

It is also the allure of Victorian times with the gaslight and the fog that make for great storytelling. Conjuring images of a dark figure intent on malicious acts walking the streets of London gives the reader a feeling of dread in the pit of the stomach. The palpable fear of the public as they live in fear that they might possibly be the next victim. This is edge-of-the-seat reading!

Morrell has impressed me previously with his thriller, Creepers--a book that has stuck with me since the day I finished reading it. There is no doubt that he is a masterful storyteller and this new foray into historical mysteries is something I hope he plans to continue. If you are fascinated by Victorian London with all its dark underbelly, then I highly recommend that you read this book...now!

Check out more of my reviews at http://thetruebookaddict.blogspot.com/ ( )
  TheTrueBookAddict | Mar 22, 2020 |
Extremely well researched and for the most part, well written. While I loved the era and the main characters, this author’s style was just a bit too graphic for me. Also, after the killer’s reveal about 60% of the way in, the chase to catch him went on a bit long. That said, the story has merit and I will likely read the next Instalment. ( )
  Zumbanista | Jan 8, 2020 |
Showing 1-5 of 48 (next | show all)
This novel has touches of an historical police procedural, a bit of Sherlock Holmesian-detecting, plenty of gore, and literary style. It’s hard to believe it’s the same author who gave us Rambo, although after reading this delightful mystery it’s only natural to assume that the book is better than the movie.
added by KelMunger | editLit/Rant, Kel Munger (Jul 19, 2013)
 

» Add other authors (10 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
David Morrellprimary authorall editionscalculated
Anderson, Peggy LeithProofreadersecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Drennan, WilliamCopy editorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Tanner, MattCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wellman, IlonaCover photographsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wolf, MatthewNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Yankus, MarcCover photo-illustrationsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
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Epigraph
It is long since we read Thomas De Quincey, but his bloody horrors are still fresh and, to this day, terrible in their power. For long after we read him, every night brought a renewal of the most real shuddering, the palsying dread, and the nightmares with which our first reading of him cursed us.
British Quarterly Review, 1863
Dedication
To Robert Morrison and Grevel Lindop

For guiding my journey into all things Thomas De Quincey
First words
Titian, Reubens, and Van Dyke, it is said, always practiced their art in full dress.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Information from the German Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
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Wikipedia in English (1)

"Thomas De Quincey, infamous for his memoir, 'Confessions of an English Opium-Eater', is the major suspect in a series of ferocious mass murders identical to ones that terrorized London forty-three years earlier...Desperate to clearl his name but crippled by opium addiction, De Quincey is aided by his devoted daughter Emily and a pair of determined Scotland Yard detectives." --inside front cover.

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Book description
Thomas De Quincey, best known for his memoir Confessions of an Opium Eater, is the prime suspect in a series of ferocious London murders. The blueprint for the crimes seems to be De Quincey's satire "On Murder Considered to be One of the Fine Arts." Desperate to clear his name but crippled by opium addiction, De Quincey is aided by his brilliant and devoted daughter Emily and a pair of tenacious Scotland Yard detectives.
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