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They were the most horrific crimes of a new century: the murders of newborn innocents for which two British women were hanged at Holloway Prison in1903. Decades later, mystery writer Josephine Tey has decided to write a novel based on Amelia Sach and Annie Walters, the notorious Finchley baby farmers, unaware that her research will entangle her in the desperate hunt for a modern-day killer.
A young seamstressan ex-convict determined to reformhas been found brutally slain in the studio of Teys friends, the Motley sisters, amid preparations for a star-studded charity gala. Despite initial appearances, Inspector Archie Penrose is not convinced this murder is the result of a long-standing domestic feudand a horrific accident involving a second young woman soon after supports his convictions. Now he and his friend Josephine must unmask a sadistic killer before more blood flowsas the repercussions of unthinkable crimes of the past reach out to destroy those left behind long after justice has been served.
Nicola Upson has written for a variety of publications, including the New Statesman, where she was a crime fiction critic. She also regularly contributes to BBC radio and has worked in the theater for ten years. She divides her time between Cambridge and Cornwall.
“This excellent entry in this highly recommended series provides all the classic detective components with a contemporary kick. The case is intricate and surprisingly intimate, weaving in and out of two historical periods and featuring that Upstairs Downstairs class element.”
-Library Journal (starred review)
“Excellent. . . . Upson upsets readers’ expectations with a surprise that keeps the suspense high to the satisfying conclusion. Puzzle fans as well as admirers of psychologically rich crime authors such as Ruth Rendell will find a lot to savor.”
-Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“Upson illustrates the ripple effects of misdeeds here and her smoothly flowing dialogue and deftly handled plot mark this worthy addition to the series.”