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by Orion books, 11 August 2016. ISBN
978 1 4091 50312
In this sequel to City of Devils Cesare Lombroso and James
Murray are plunged into an investigation involving Satanic rituals, ancient
Egyptian funerary rites and a haunted abbey.
novel, set in 1888, opens in Edinburgh with James, recently returned from
Turin, burying his father.James and his
younger sister Lucy regret his passing as they attend his funeral but their
devout and dour Aunt Agnes has eschewed the ceremony because of a scandal
surrounding the deceased Dr Murray.
period of mourning is interrupted when James receives a letter from Turin, in
which his former lover, Sofia, entreats his help.James, driven by his continued but apparently
hopeless love for Sofia, is determined to go once more to Turin and Aunt Agnes
reluctantly agrees that Lucy may accompany him provided that she is chaperoned
by the middle-aged, and delightfully named, Miss Euphemia Trott.
their arrival, James is reacquainted with, amongst others, his tutor, Professor
Lombroso, a character based on the real life “…father of modern
criminology”.Lombroso is engaged on a
project that he believes, “… will shake the very foundations of criminal
anthropology…”and James agrees to
assist him but must also investigate the disappearance of Sofia’s cousin,
quickly becomes apparent that Chiara is just one of several young women who
have gone missing over the previous months.The discovery of one of the missing girls who appears to have been
ritually slaughtered precedes further gruesome findings as the protagonists,
and the reader, are led and misled through a thrilling narrative.
research that underpins the novel makes the gripping tale even more interesting
and the Author’s Note, at the end of the book, provides a fascinating
description of aspects of the life and work of the real Cesare Lombroso.
heartily recommend this captivating historical mystery and look forward to
reading more of Diana Bretherick’s writing.
Reviewer: Dorothy Marshall-Gent
Diana Bretherick’s was born in Kenilworth, Warwickshire. Her experiences
in working in criminal justice have given her insight into the workings of the
criminal mind. She has honed this in her criminological studies, attaining an
M.A in Criminology in 1999 and a PhD in 2006. She has now turned her attention
to crime fiction, producing her first novel, City of Devils, in 2013, the
result of her MA in Creative Writing. She is currently working on her second
PhD in Creative Writing. Diana also runs
crime writing workshops and regularly performs readings of her work including
short stories with a supernatural element. Her hobbies, when she’s not scaring
people senseless, are eating, drinking and generally having a good time.
Dot Marshall-Gentworked in the
emergency services for twenty years first as a police officer, then as a
paramedic and finally as a fire control officer before graduating from King’s
College, London as a teacher of English in her mid-forties. She completed
a M.A. in Special and Inclusive Education at the Institute of Education, London
and now teaches part-time and writes mainly about educational issues. Dot
sings jazz and country music and plays guitar, banjo and piano as well as being
addicted to reading mystery and crime fiction.