Murder as a Fine Art by David Morrell

83%

15 Critic Reviews

Everything works—the horrifying depiction of the murders, the asides explaining the impact of train travel on English society, nail-biting action sequences—making this book an epitome of the intelligent page-turner.
-Publishers Weekly

Synopsis

ALA Reading List Award for Best Mystery
GASLIT LONDON IS BROUGHT TO ITS KNEES IN DAVID MORRELL'S BRILLIANT HISTORICAL THRILLER.

Thomas De Quincey, infamous for his memoir Confessions of an English Opium-Eater, is the major suspect in a series of ferocious mass murders identical to ones that terrorized London forty-three years earlier.

The blueprint for the killings seems to be De Quincey's essay "On Murder Considered as One of the Fine Arts." Desperate to clear his name but crippled by opium addiction, De Quincey is aided by his devoted daughter Emily and a pair of determined Scotland Yard detectives.

In Murder as a Fine Art, David Morrell plucks De Quincey, Victorian London, and the Ratcliffe Highway murders from history. Fogbound streets become a battleground between a literary star and a brilliant murderer, whose lives are linked by secrets long buried but never forgotten.
 

About David Morrell

See more books from this Author
David Morrell is the award-winning author of First Blood, co-founder of the International Thriller Writersorganization, and is considered by many to be the father of the modern action novel.Hank Wagner is a prolific and respected critic and interviewer. His work regularly appears in such publications as Mystery Scene, Cemetery Dance, Nova Express, and The New York Review of Science Fiction.
 
Published May 7, 2013 by Mulholland Books. 374 pages
Genres: History, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Literature & Fiction, Horror, Crime. Fiction
Bestseller Status:
icon25
Peak Rank on Sep 15 2013
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Weeks as Bestseller
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Critic reviews for Murder as a Fine Art
All: 15 | Positive: 15 | Negative: 0

Kirkus

Above average
Reviewed by Kirkus Reviews on Apr 30 2013

Fans of Victorian and/or quirky mysteries will find much to enjoy and will likely be willing to forgive the book's substantial flaws.

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Publishers Weekly

Excellent
Reviewed by Publisher's Weekly on Mar 04 2013

Everything works—the horrifying depiction of the murders, the asides explaining the impact of train travel on English society, nail-biting action sequences—making this book an epitome of the intelligent page-turner.

Read Full Review of Murder as a Fine Art | See more reviews from Publishers Weekly

RT Book Reviews

Good
Reviewed by Jeff Ayers on Sep 09 2012

Using actual history and real people to weave his tale of murder and mayhem, he has drafted his best thriller in years. This is art at its finest.

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Historical Novel Society

Good
Reviewed by Kristen Hannum on Sep 04 2013

This book is fastidiously researched and plotted as well as being pleasingly compelling, despite its dark subject matter.

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TCPalm / AP

Good
Reviewed by TCPalm on May 12 2013

Morrell’s thorough and erudite research of the people and culture of the British Empire’s heyday informs every page of the novel.

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That's What She Read

Above average
Reviewed by Michelle on Sep 13 2013

Mr. Morrell manages to infuse his mystery with a cautionary tale that adds depth and interest to what would otherwise be a fairly one-dimensional, traditional murder mystery.

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Literate Housewife

Above average
Reviewed by Jennifer on May 14 2013

Murder As a Fine Art is a smart mystery that makes the landscape of Victorian era London seem as vivid to me as crisp color picture.

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Peeking Between the Pages

Excellent
Reviewed by Darlene on May 22 2013

Murder as a Fine Art by David Morrell is a historical thriller that had me flipping pages faster than I thought possible. This book was fantastic!

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Read Me Deadly

Good
Reviewed by Della Streetwise on Aug 06 2013

I was fascinated by the rich description of Morrell's Victorian London. Sewage flows into the Thames, livestock roam the streets, Dr. John Snow only recently proved that cholera is caused not by breathing foul air but by drinking contaminated water.

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So Many Books, So Little Time

Excellent
Reviewed by Denise F. on May 07 2013

Murder as a Fine Art was such a fast-paced story; once I got pulled in, I had to keep reading. The descriptions of London's darker side added to the creepy factor and it was just a great story overall.

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Broken Teepee

Above average
Reviewed by Patty Woodland on Jun 03 2013

The historical tidbits dropped throughout the book were downright fascinating and were added in seamlessly so that the reader was educated but not preached to. I'm rather glad I was not living in London at this time period.

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Unabridged Chick

Excellent
Reviewed by Audra on May 20 2013

I had such a flippin' great time with this book. From the first page, I was sucked in, and the only reason I didn't finish this one in a day is that I made myself slow down and enjoy the journey -- I could have taken another 300 pages and been only slightly satisfied.

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Mystery Maven Blog

Above average
Reviewed by Liz Nichols on Sep 05 2013

As Morrell cautions, those with fundamentalist view and values that do not allow looking so deeply into early drug trafficking will not be able to stomach this book. Those who enjoy looking at the seamier side of Victorian life will find “Murder as a Fine Art” quite enlightening.

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Violin in a Void

Good
Reviewed by Melinda Petersen on May 21 2013

It’s a quick fun read, but with substance. Recommended, if you’re looking for a strong crime thriller.

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The Maiden's Court

Excellent
Reviewed by Heather on May 21 2013

This was one powerful novel. At every turn the reader is taken by surprise and the suspense keeps you moving on to that next page.

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Reader Rating for Murder as a Fine Art
85%

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