City of Darkness (City of Mystery Book 1) by Kim Wright
Publisher: Amazon Digital Services (April 2012)
Formats Available: Kindle, Paperback
Format Read: Kindle
Synopsis from Goodreads: City of Darkness takes place in 1888 London, where Jack the Ripper roams the streets with impunity and Scotland Yard seems helpless to stop him.
The science of forensics is in its infancy but a few detectives – Trevor Welles among them – recognize that they are dealing with a different sort of killer, a “modern criminal” who chooses his victims at random. If Jack is to be caught, he won’t be caught with Scotland Yard’s normal methods of deduction for there is no logic to this madness. The question is no longer “Why was the victim killed?” but rather “How was the victim killed?” For the first time in the history of detection, science is trumping deductive reasoning.
When a twist of fate puts Trevor in charge of the case, he hastily assembles Scotland Yard’s first forensics team: Davy Mabrey, the first bobby on the scene of the grisliest of the murders, whose working class common sense proves an invaluable asset, Rayley Abrams, a cautious intellectual whose future at the Yard is marginalized due to his Jewish heritage, Tom Bainbridge, a medical student with aristocratic connections and a secret drinking problem, and Emma Kelly, sister of the Ripper’s last victim who has a troubled past and a gift for linguistics. The team finds an unlikely ally in the form of Queen Victoria herself, who takes an unusual level of interest in the Ripper case and secretly funds the unit. But will they stop Jack in time to spare Leanna Bainbridge, the young heiress with whom Trevor has fallen madly and improbably in love?
My thoughts: I was first introduced to Kim Wright’s work through her first novel Love in Mid Air which published in March of 2010. City of Darkness is a vastly different work that appealed to me because it is different from everything that I had been reading. It was full of intrigue and suspense. It also has the historical angle that I enjoy so much.
Somewhat gruesome at times the story leads us through Scotland Yard’s attempt at capturing new kind of criminal utilizing cutting edge methods. Wright gives subtle hints throughout the story, allowing you to come to your own conclusions as to who the gruesome murderer might be. I had myself convinced that I knew who it was more than once in the story. I changed my mind several times as once I had decided I had it all figured out, the story would turn and hint at another possible suspect.
Wright even throws in a few life lessons for good measure. One of my favorite quotes from the story was “Don’t sell yourself short, Madley, there are plenty of people willing to do that chore for you.” How true is that?
All in all I thought that City of Darkness was a fantastic read and I am looking for the next installment in the City of Mystery series.
© 2012, Teresa. All rights reserved.