London Society takes their problems to Sherlock Holmes. Everyone else goes to Arrowood.
‘Finlay depicts a seedy, desperate London and vivid characters with considerable skill’ The Times
Nowhere to hide.
London, 1896. As winter grips the city, a group of African travellers seek sanctuary inside the walls of the Quaker Meeting House. They are being hunted by a ruthless showman, who is forcing them to perform in his ethnic exhibition in the London Aquarium.
Nowhere to turn.
Private investigator William Arrowood and his assistant Barnett agree to help the travellers avoid capture. But when they arrive at the Meeting House, they find a scene of devastation. Two people have been murdered and the others have fled into the night.
Nowhere to run.
The hunt for the real killer leads Arrowood into the dark heart of Victorian London. A shadowy world of freak shows, violence and betrayal, where there are no good choices and only the slimmest chance of survival…
Mick Finlay was born in Glasgow and grew up in Canada and England. He now divides his time between Brighton and Cambridge. He teaches in a Psychology Department, and has published social psychological research on political violence, persuasion, and verbal and non-verbal behaviour. Before becoming an academic he worked as a tent-hand in a travelling circus, a butcher’s boy, a hotel porter, and in various psychology-related roles in the NHS and social services. He reads widely in history, psychology, and enjoys a variety of fiction genres (including crime, of course!).
I’ve not read any of the other books in this series, so I came to the books ignorant of any history between characters. It was made clear who the characters were at the beginning, so I never felt like I’d missed out by not having read them. That said it’s piqued my curiosity to remedy that at some point!
I felt that the author gave enough reference to racism that existed without using the most offensive terms. I know they were used, but I don’t feel reading them in print is necessary. I could be wrong on this. I can only say I may have got too angry to carry on reading the story.
The plot is full of brilliant twists and turns that weave their way all over the globe and back again. The characters were believable and fully rounded and the physical violence people were threatened with was explored properly. The historical elements were also fully formed and believable.
Overall this was a great novel that I thoroughly enjoyed from start to finish. I look forward to reading more from this author who writes cleverly and intelligently while keeping the balance with a really good story.
With thanks to HQ stories and Mick Finlay for the advanced reading copy of this book.