A Beautiful Blue Death by Charles Finch
(Charles Lenox Mysteries)

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Synopsis

On any given day in London, all Charles Lenox, Victorian gentleman and armchair explorer, wants to do is relax in his private study with a cup of tea, a roaring fire and a good book. But when his lifelong friend Lady Jane asks for his help, Lenox cannot resist another chance to unravel a mystery, even if it means trudging through the snow to her townhouse next door.

One of Jane's former servants, Prudence Smith, is dead – an apparent suicide. But Lenox suspects something far more sinister: murder, by a rare and deadly poison. The house where the girl worked is full of suspects, and though Prudence dabbled with the hearts of more than a few men, Lenox is baffled by an elusive lack of motive in the girl's death.

When another body turns up during the London season's most fashionable ball, Lenox must untangle a web of loyalties and animosities. Was it jealousy that killed Prudence? Or was it something else entirely, something that Lenox alone can uncover before the killer strikes again – disturbingly close to home?

 

About Charles Finch

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Charles Finch is a graduate of Yale and Oxford. He is the author of the Charles Lenox mysteries, including The Fleet Street Murders, The September Society, A Stranger in Mayfair, and A Burial at Sea. His first novel, A Beautiful Blue Death, was nominated for an Agatha Award and was named one of Library Journal's Best Books of 2007, one of only five mystery novels on the list. He lives in Oxford, England.
 
Published June 26, 2007 by Minotaur Books. 332 pages
Genres: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Literature & Fiction, History. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for A Beautiful Blue Death

Kirkus Reviews

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Searching the gel’s digs at the Barnard household, Lenox discovers several clues: a bottle of rare and expensive blue indigo poison, a forged suicide note, a leaf, a candle and diverse suspicious guests in residence, including two politicians, two nephews, one financier, Prue’s footman fiancé and...

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Publishers Weekly

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This installment in Finch’s mystery series about Victorian gentleman and amateur detective Charles Lenox is devoted to the sleuth’s first case, in which—at the request of neighbor Lady Jane Grey—Lenox looks into the presumed suicide of a maid.

Jan 02 2012 | Read Full Review of A Beautiful Blue Death (Charl...

Pajiba

Here, he is called in by long-time friend Lady Jane Grey (oh how I snickered when I read that) to investigate the purported suicide of one of her ex-maids.

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Kittling: Books

better to read 1/3 of marvelous than to read none of it at all.

Feb 05 2015 | Read Full Review of A Beautiful Blue Death (Charl...

Bundaberg Regional Libraries

Author Charles Finch has created a sleuth who is refined, intelligent and very clever, and brings Victorian England alive for readers.

Sep 15 2011 | Read Full Review of A Beautiful Blue Death (Charl...

Shine from Yahoo

However, this is the first Lenoxian case to make print, in author Charles Finch's debut mystery novel, in which the "aged 40, or thereabouts" Lenox is asked to look into the death of one of his dear friend's (Lady Jane Grey's) former maids, one Prudence Smith.

Aug 07 2009 | Read Full Review of A Beautiful Blue Death (Charl...

Curtis Brown

Charles Lenox, Victorian gentleman and armchair explorer, likes nothing more than to relax in his private study with a cup of tea, a roaring fire and a good book.

| Read Full Review of A Beautiful Blue Death (Charl...

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Leiah Cooper 26 Sep 2015

1865. While the US is enjoying the end of the Civil War, in London the Liberals take over Parliament in the form of Lord Palmerston, who died that same year leaving Lord John Russell as Prime Minis...

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