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Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2013-11-11
- Reviewer: Staff
Harris’s competent debut, the first in a late-Victorian mystery series, introduces Colin Pendragon, an aristocratic gay sleuth who matches Sherlock Holmes in his arrogance. Lady Arnifour seeks Pendragon’s help because she’s dissatisfied with the Scotland Yard investigation into the recent murder of her husband and the near-fatal beating of her niece, Elspeth, both found in a barn on the family estate just outside London. A second case involves the search for a street urchin whose brother has begged for help. That case stirs painful memories for Pendragon’s partner, Ethan Pruitt, a former child thief and opium addict. Pendragon’s housekeeper, the outspoken Mrs. Behmoth, provides some comic relief, but readers may find her too like her sneering employer. Pendragon is rude to Lady Arnifour, insulting to her children, and contemptuous of the police. He is redeemed, in part, by his brains and his gentle treatment of Pruitt. Agent: Kathy Green, Kathy Green Agency. (Feb.)