From Charles Finch, the critically acclaimed author of A Beautiful Blue Death and A Burial at Sea, comes A Death in the Small Hours--an intriguing installment in the Charles Lenox Mysteries, deemed "a beguiling series" by The New York Times.
Charles Lenox is at the pinnacle of his political career and is a delighted new father. His days of regularly investigating the crimes of Victorian London now some years behind him, he plans a trip to his uncle's estate, Somerset, in the expectation of a few calm weeks to write an important speech. When he arrives in the quiet village of Plumley, however, what greets him is a series of strange vandalisms upon the local shops: broken windows, minor thefts, threatening scrawls.
Only when a far more serious crime is committed does he begin to understand the great stakes of those events, and the complex and sinister mind that is wreaking fear and suspicion in Plumley. Now, with his protege, John Dallington, at his side, the race is on for Lenox to find the culprit before he strikes again. And this time his victim may be someone that Lenox loves.
Set in 1874, Finch's superb sixth mystery (after 2011's A Burial at Sea) finds former private investigator Charles Lenox now an influential member of Parliament. Lenox accepts the honor of giving the opening speech for the new parliamentary session, which could be the prologue to further government advancement. To prepare, he accepts his uncle's invitation to visit the uncle's estate in the village of Plumbley, which has been afflicted by bizarre acts of vandalism: someone drew a picture of a man hanging from a noose on the doors of two local merchants, and the Roman numeral for 22 was painted on the church door. The stabbing murder of a 19-year-old young man raises the ante. Lenox welcomes the chance to resume detecting, "his truest vocation." Boasting one of Finch's tightest and trickiest plots, this installment further establishes Lenox as a worthy heir to the aristocratic mantle of Lord Peter Wimsey.
Another great read in this series
Thoroughly enjoyed this book, as I have with each of the previous Lenox mysteries. This one is perhaps more involved with the intimate lives of the family but that gave it a more personable angle. I look forward to the next in the series!