Tag Archives: archie lean

Review: Letters From a Murderer

lettersLetters From a Murderer by John Matthews

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Source: eARC courtesy of Angry Robot Ltd via NetGalley

I love mysteries and seeing that it was on Netgalley under Angry Robot, I got really really and I mean, really excited! At first, I was sort of hoping that it will have some steampunk component to it or something unexpected or a funky element (we’re talking about an Angry Robot publication here, c’mon!) but it was pretty nearly strictly mystery historical fiction albeit with some fact-stretching involved. I have, however, enjoyed the reading fairly well.

This book, however, was similar to the Archie Lean books I’ve read late last year. In fact, Joseph Argenti reminded me a lot of Archie Lean –both detectives of lower/middle-class background with good deductive minds who loved their jobs and are good at it. Their respective partners are both brilliant though world’s apart in temperament. I found Finley Jameson a lot more interesting though, faulty, nutty with some sweetness thrown in.

Whilst I’ve read a lot of mystery, I’ve avoided most Jack the Ripper ones somehow. I’m not sure whether that was on purpose or whether none so far has truly grabbed my interest. Here’s where I confess my ignorance of the historical details of Jack the Ripper so I can’t comment what’s possible or not in this novel but I found the ending (personally) frustrating. Let’s just say that I wanted more than what I got.

The crime was brutal. The case was intriguing. The chase thrilling. The characters appealing. With a great cover and Angry Robot as publisher –this one is a safe bet. If you loved Archie Lean, you’d like this book too and vice versa.

Thanks to Angry Robot Ltd via NetGalley for the privilege of reading & review eGalley

View all my reviews

Review: A Study in Revenge

A Study in Revenge by Kieran Shields
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Source: eARC courtesy of Crown and Edelweiss -get your own copy from The Book Depository

This review is in relation to the second book in the Archie Lean series. Whilst my review will not contain spoilers from the first book, I would recommend that you read the first book (The Truth of All Things) as it will provide much background to this book.

Perceval Grey is the American Sherlock Holmes. Unlike Holmes, however, he needs also work in the face of Society’s prejudice to the colour of his skin (being of Mixed Indian heritage). When he is intrigued, he will commit his all to be able to present the solution, up to the point of it being an obsession. His focus in his work is admirable and yet, he is Not Sherlock Holmes. The presentation of his solutions just isn’t as brilliant as Holmes.

Archie Lean is a dedicated Deputy of the Police. He is not only dedicated in his duty to the State but also to the people. He would pursue to the best of his abilities the mystery presented until such time that the culprit may be apprehended. I really like Archie, he’s an all-round nice guy type. He’s the ‘Watson’ sidekick to Grey and is mostly appreciated for his ‘brilliantly asinine’ comments.

To begin with, the plot / mystery in this book didn’t appear to have any relation whatsoever to the first book (nor is it necessary to know the full extent the mystery of the first book) however, it really wasn’t til the end and just now, that the title clicked into place –A Study in Revenge! The book opens with a gruesome scene of a corpse having been dug up, burnt to crisps, and surrounded with occult markings. It was followed by a missing ‘artefact’ heirloom, alchemical legends, folklore and tragic romance. There are no coincidences in mysteries, of course, all things are related and will, ultimately, reveal the secret within.

I have really enjoyed this historical mystery though you’d have to be patient as threads are being explored until they are woven to form an obvious tapestry in the last pages of the book. If you like Sherlock Holmes or Mistress of the Art of Death, you may enjoy this book / series.

Thank you Crown and Edelweiss for the privilege to read & review eARC

View all my reviews