The Darwin Affair: A Novel (Hardcover)
Title: The Darwin Affair
Comments: I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I expect it to be the first in a series dealing with Chief Detective Inspector Charles Field. This is Dickensian England at its best and worst. Pre Jack the Ripper, but a pretty bloody series of murders take place. The main character and his family are well defined so that you have an affinity toward them. I am sure we will see more of them. A lot of the ancillary characters are well drawn and there is an interesting take on real historical characters. Darwin, in particular. Dickens makes an appearance and is important to the Detective. If you are a fan of historic detective stories I am sure you will enjoy this. Make a note of the author and expect to see more in the future by him.— From Book Club Picks
Get ready for one of the most inventive and entertaining novels of 2019—an edge-of-your-seat Victorian-era thriller, where the controversial publication On the Origin of Species sets off a string of unspeakable crimes.
London, June 1860: When an assassination attempt is made on Queen Victoria, and a petty thief is gruesomely murdered moments later—and only a block away—Chief Detective Inspector Charles Field quickly surmises that these crimes are connected to an even more sinister plot. Was Victoria really the assassin’s target? Are those closest to the Crown hiding something? And who is the shadowy figure witnesses describe as having lifeless, coal-black eyes?
Soon, Field’s investigation exposes a shocking conspiracy in which the publication of Charles Darwin’s controversial On the Origin of Species sets off a string of murders, arson, kidnapping, and the pursuit of a madman named the Chorister. As the investigation takes Field from the dangerous alleyways of London to the hallowed halls of Oxford, the list of possible conspirators grows, and the body count escalates. And as he edges closer to the Chorister, he uncovers dark secrets that were meant to remain forever hidden.
About the Author
“London in 1860 is the principal setting of Tim Mason’s The Darwin Affair, which evokes the pleasures of such period authors as Wilkie Collins, Arthur Conan Doyle and Charles Dickens. [A] memorable page-turner. Intellectually stimulating and viscerally exciting, The Darwin Affair is breathtaking from start to stop.”
—The Wall Street Journal
“A perfect addition to your summer reading list. Fast-paced and lively, this page-turner would appeal to fans of Charles Dickens and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.”
“An audacious historical thriller . . . The intelligent plot features prominent figures of the time, including Karl Marx . . . and Charles Darwin, whose heretical theory of evolution has unsettled some very powerful men. Wry prose and vivid period detail help make Mason’s speculations feel plausible.”
—Publishers Weekly, starred review
“Readers of historical fiction, murder mysteries, action/adventure and thrillers will be equally entertained and perhaps edified: beneath the excitement lie thought-provoking questions about class and order, the interplay of science and religion and intellectual curiosity. The Darwin Affair has it all: thrills, engrossing characters, taut pacing and historical interest.”
“Mason’s Dickensian London, layered with gritty, horror-tinged period details and the imaginative interweaving of Typhoid Mary and the underworld’s grave-robbing industry, provides a rare time-traveling experience for historical-mystery readers. The novel shares the edgy appeal of Caleb Carr’s The Alienist and Louis Bayard’s Mr. Timothy.”
—Booklist, starred review
“While readers cheer for Inspector Field, a true-life detective and friend of Charles Dickens, they will inadvertently learn a smattering of history—and enjoy every second of it. Author Tim Mason makes it fun. He writes with authenticity and knows precisely how to keep his audience on the edge of their seats. Oh, and just when you believe he’s about to wrap it up, get comfortable, because he has a whole lot more action in store.”
“With many grisly murders and many shocking surprises along the way, the book rockets toward a last dark twist. Careful research, a driving plot, wry wit, and compelling characters make this a most entertaining read.”
“Set in Victorian era London, Tim Mason’s The Darwin Affair is a fantastic and original historical thriller. In fact, this is one of the best thrillers I’ve read in years.”
“The Darwin Affair by Tim Mason . . . set in Victorian England of the 1860s . . . grabs the reader and tosses him or her into the middle of an assassination attempt of the Royals—Queen Victoria and Prince Albert . . . [T]he plot unfolds in an exciting dash to save Prince Albert, and bring Decimus Cobb . . . easily the most frightening antagonist since Hannibal Lecter . . . to justice.”
—New York Journal of Books
“This clever, yeasty detective yarn is like a runaway hansom cab that pauses just long enough to take on passengers ranging from Darwin to Dickens before hurtling onward. It's a grand ride, a serious education and a delightful addiction.”
—Louis Bayard, author of Courting Mr. Lincoln
“An engaging historic mystery.”
“It’s London 1860, and an assassination attempt has been made on Queen Vict