Styled after Dickens and other writers from that period, Lynn Shepherd's newest murder mystery The Solitary House is creepy, dark and intoxicating. While literary lovers may recognize some characters and themes from Victorian-era classics, it has been a long while since I've read Dickens. Therefore, my review will be based only on the stand-alone literary success of The Solitary House.
Young Charles Maddox is a private detective who received training from his uncle, one of the greats. Recently, removed from the police force, Maddox has just one case when he is contacted by the famous and powerful attorney Tulkinghorn and hired to investigate some threatening letters received by a client. The investigation soon proves complicated and deadly as Maddox's contacts are viciously murdered. Violently warned against further inquiry, Maddox will risk his own life to uncover the crimes and the truth.
The Solitary House is just what you want from a mystery. Filled with ominous characters and atrocious crimes, the seedy underbelly of Dicken's London is revived in Shepherd's newest novel. Charles Maddox is a likable and sympathetic protagonist, just flawed enough to be believable. Those he seeks are perfectly depraved and the secret they attempt to conceal is horrifying. Well paced, the plot is thrilling and frightening and just what one wants from a murder mystery.
** I received a complimentary copy of The Solitary House in exchange for my honest review. No other compensation was received. **