Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Straight From the Headlines

... of 1857, that is.

I told you about Ellen Horan's debut, 31 Bond Street, this weekend in my Pre-Pub post and I promised that I would follow-up. So here it is!

I stayed up last night finishing this one and I have to say that I am thoroughly impressed. It begins with the discovery of Harvey Burdell's brutalized corpse. The accused, Emma Cunningham, is a widow who was trying to better her situation by landing a husband with a respectable address and wealth. Unfortunately, when she met Harvey Burdell and agreed to act as housemistress of his home, she hoped that, as he promised, they would be married soon. Now she stands trial for murder and the question is this: is Emma a killer or a victim? Attorney Henry Clinton has vowed to take on her case and her defense in spite of the fact that both his career and his reputation are now on the line.

The majority of Horan's characters come straight from the actual 19th century case. Apparently, the book began as a non-fiction account of the trial before she transformed it into the fictional mystery that it is now. The result is a highly entertaining, page-turner that unfolds for readers much the way I imagine the original case did all those years ago. It's obvious why Horan was inspired to write this book -- the case and the players are utterly fascinating. I think Horan has done a masterful job in weaving fact and fiction and bringing them to life for today's audience.

Quite simply, I loved it! So again, 31 Bond Street hits shelves on March 30. Historical mystery fans take note. This is one people are going to be talking about!

1 comment:

Cheryl said...

I so need to pick up a copy of this book.