The Pleasures of Men by Kate Williams
(Voice)

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...a disjointed narrative style which slows the pace and teeters dangerously on confusion at times...
-Guardian

Synopsis

July 1840: The young Queen Victoria has just entered her third year on the throne when a major recession brings London's desperate and destitute into its sweltering streets. While the city crackles with tension, orphaned Catherine Sorgeiul stays locked away in her uncle's home, a peculiar place where death masks adorn the walls and certain rooms are strictly forbidden. Nineteen years old and haunted by a dark past, Catherine becomes obsessed with a series of terrible murders of young girls sweeping the city. Details of the crimes are especially gruesome--the victims' hair has been newly plaited and thrust into their mouths, and their limbs are grotesquely folded behind them, like wounded birds--and the serial killer is soon nicknamed the Man of Crows.

Catherine begins writing stories about the victims--women on their own and vulnerable in the big city--and gradually the story of the murderer as well. But she soon realizes that she has involved herself in a web of betrayal, deceit, and terror that threatens her and all those around her. A remarkable fiction debut, The Pleasures of Men is a gripping and spine-tingling thriller.
 

About Kate Williams

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Kate Williams earned her BA at Somerville College, Oxford, where she was a College Scholar; she received her MA from Queen Mary, University of London, and her DPhil at Oxford. Her debut book, England's Mistress: The Infamous Life of Emma Hamilton (Ballantine, 2006), was shortlisted for the Marsh Prize for Biography and her second book, Becoming Queen (Ballantine, 2010), about the passionate youth of Queen Victoria and Princess Charlotte was a Book of the Year in the Tatler and Spectator. She is currently writing a biography of Josephine Bonaparte, Mistress of Empires, for publication in Spring 2012 by Ballantine. She teaches creative writing at London University. The Pleasures of Men is her first novel. She lives in London, England.
 
Published August 7, 2012 by Hachette Books. 380 pages
Genres: History, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Literature & Fiction, Romance. Fiction
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Critic reviews for The Pleasures of Men
All: 2 | Positive: 1 | Negative: 1

Guardian

Good
Reviewed by Mark Ravenhill on Jan 27 2012

Williams sets a steady pace with a series of killings matched by her heroine's mounting fascination and terror. She is exploring a substantial theme...

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Guardian

Below average
Reviewed by Pam Norfolk on Jan 16 2012

...a disjointed narrative style which slows the pace and teeters dangerously on confusion at times...

Read Full Review of The Pleasures of Men (Voice) | See more reviews from Guardian

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