Thursday 8 October 2015

Review ~The Fatal Flame by Lyndsay Faye

Headline Review
May 2015

New York,  in 1848, was a place of little charm and scant employment. The Bowery girls who worked in downtown Manhattan eked out a slender living in the manufacturies of the notorious Five Points district. Some were employed as seamstresses in appalling conditions, whilst others were loured into equally dreadful and degrading roles as prostitutes, and as supplicant servants to unscrupulous individuals who exploited them to their full extent. Timothy Wilde is one of the original NYPD coppers, who along with with his brother and associate, Valentine, attempt to bring law and order to this swirling hotchpotch of survival.

In Fatal Flame, a series of mysterious building fires threatens one of the city's corrupt political leaders, and it becomes a race against time for Wilde to discover both the perpetrator and the raison d'etre behind these horrific crimes.

Overall, I thought that the murder mystery at the heart of the story was nicely done and conveyed the right amount of gritty realism. Timothy Wilde appears a worthy protagonist and manages to move the story along with energy and enthusiasm. However, having not read either of the first two books in the series, I did feel a little lost at times, and didn’t always appreciate the references to a back story I didn’t fully understand. That said, I am sure that the followers of this series from the beginning will find much to enjoy, and will find the story beautifully written with a fine eye for historical detail. 

My thanks to the team at Headline Review for my copy of this book


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