A CHRISTMAS RETURN is the 15th novella in the festive series by Anne Perry, the queen of Victorian crime.
As the festive season approaches, Charlotte Pitt’s grandmamma, Mariah Ellison, is facing Christmas alone. When she receives an unexpected gift, memories are sparked of a Christmas in Haslemere long ago, when her beloved friend Cullen Wesley died and a local villager was brutally murdered, with no killer brought to justice.
The unsolved case has resurfaced and Cullen’s grandson, Peter, begs for Mariah’s help to solve the crime that led to his grandfather’s death. Mariah can’t resist a friend in need and she returns to Haslemere to investigate the murder and heal old wounds. But evil still lurks in the picturesque village and she’ll need all her wits about her to see that justice is done.
A Christmas Return is the enthralling new festive tale from the pen of Anne Perry, the master of Victorian crime.
TWENTY-ONE DAYS is the first in an exciting new generation of Pitt novels, featuring Daniel Pitt, by New York Times bestseller and queen of Victorian crime, Anne Perry.
1910. Sir Thomas Pitt’s son, Daniel, is in the middle of his first case as a barrister when he is summoned to the Old Bailey for an important trial. Renowned biographer Russell Graves is charged with the brutal murder of his wife and Daniel must assist in his defence.
When the jury finds the accused guilty, Graves insists he has been framed. He is writing a shocking exposé of a powerful figure, revealing state secrets so damning that someone might well have wanted to silence him. With the reputations of those closest to him at stake, Daniel has twenty-one days to uncover the truth and ensure that an innocent man isn’t sent to the gallows . . .
‘Anne Perry’s Victorian mysteries are marvels of plot construction’ New York Times
DARK TIDE RISING is the 24th compelling mystery in the William Monk series, from the master of Victorian crime, New York Times bestselling author Anne Perry. ‘Anne Perry’s Victorian mysteries are marvels of plot construction…truly remarkable’ New York Times.
When Kate Exeter is kidnapped on the shore of the Thames, Commander William Monk is enlisted by her desperate husband to save her. Kate’s captors are demanding a ransom for her safe return and Monk and his most trusted men must arrange a secret handover in the dark slums of Jacob’s Island. But on the night someone betrays them and a brutal skirmish breaks out, leaving death and destruction in its wake . . .
Who is to blame for what went wrong? Monk senses tensions mount and no one knows who to trust. Then a whistle blower claims that the ransom money was embezzled funds that incriminate Kate’s husband, and the case takes on a whole new meaning…
The master of the Victorian crime, New York Times bestselling author Anne Perry returns with the 23rd novel in the William Monk series, AN ECHO OF MURDER.
London, 1870: The body of a Hungarian immigrant is found dead in what appears to be a ritualistic killing, with a bayonet through his heart, his fingers broken and his body surrounded by seventeen blood-dipped candles. At first, Commander William Monk of the Thames River Police suspects the killer is from within the community, but when another murder takes place, Monk fears the immigrants are being targeted by an outsider…
Meanwhile, Hester is reunited with a doctor who had been left for dead on a Crimean battlefield. Traumatised by his experiences, Fitz has made his way home via Hungary and is now living in the community. Hester is determined to help him and, when he is accused of the killings, she sets out to prove his innocence…
The queen of the Victorian mystery, New York Times bestseller Anne Perry returns with the 32nd novel in the Inspector Pitt series MURDER ON THE SERPENTINE. Pitt is on a secret mission for the Queen, maybe his last…
London, 1899: Head of Special Branch Commander Thomas Pitt is summoned to Buckingham Palace.
In the twilight of her years, Queen Victoria is all too aware that the Prince of Wales will soon inherit her empire and must be beyond reproach. She tells Pitt she tasked her close friend and confidante, John Halberd, with investigating the Prince’s friends, specifically Alan Kendrick, a wealthy playboy and betting man, but before he could report back, Halberd was found dead in a rowing boat on the Serpentine.
The death has been ruled an unfortunate accident and the investigation closed, but the Queen is not convinced that all is as it seems and tasks Pitt with finding the truth.
Forced to act alone in this most sensitive of investigations, Pitt finds himself embroiled in a plot that threatens not only the reputations of men, but also the safety and reputation of the Empire. . .
Mariah Ellison isn’t merely disappointed to learn that she won’t spend Christmas at home with her married granddaughter: she is furious. Instead, Grandmama is being packed off to a house in the Romney Marshes to stay with her ex-daughter-in-law. Never having got on with Caroline, Mariah much disapproves of her new husband: decades younger than her, Joshua, an actor, is scarcely even respectable. There will be nothing to do, no one to visit, and no doubt the terrible weather will make even taking a walk impossible. It is going to be the worst Christmas of Grandmama’s life.
As if that weren’t enough, another visitor is foisted on the household. Then something shocking and quite unexpected happens. Has a crime been committed? Grandmama is surprised to find herself turning detective – another profession she deplores – and proving extremely good at it.
December 1890: Eleven days before Christmas, Clarice and her husband, Reverend Dominic Corde, arrive in the idyllic village of Cottisham to watch over the Reverend Wynter’s flock, whilst he takes a richly deserved holiday.
With its village green and thatched cottages, Cottisham is a far cry from the bleak London parish they’ve left behind. But Clarice can’t shake the feeling that the welcoming smiles of the locals are hiding dark secrets.
When a shocking discovery confirms her suspicions, Clarice can’t resist investigating. Could it be that the Reverend is not all that he seems? Are there black sheep in the fold? One thing is certain: Clarice is determined to uncover the truth. Even if it means putting her own life in danger.
The fifth in Anne Perry’s series of charming Christmas novellas.
For Superintendent Runcorn, Christmas has rarely looked so bleak. Believing that a change of scenery may help him finally forget Melisande Ewart, Runcorn heads for the beautiful, desolate Isle of Anglesey. Any hopes of Christmas passing quietly are dashed, however, when he discovers Melisande is also in Anglesey and, moreover, that she is engaged to another man.
Then the local vicar’s sister is found murdered and Melisande’s brother is implicated in the crime. Determined to assist Melisande in her time of need, Runcorn resolves to find the killer. Is it possible in doing so, that he will also win the heart of his one true love?
In the sixth of Anne Perry’s charming Christmas novellas, a community learns to come to terms with a terrible event from its past.
Emily Radley’s Christmas plans are shattered when she learns that her aunt is dying. Although estranged from her, Emily decides that she must journey to Susannah’s home in Ireland to assist her in her final days. When she reaches Connemara though, it is evident that Susannah has more on her mind than her health.
Then Daniel, the lone survivor of a ship wrecked in a violent storm, seeks refuge in Susannah’s house. Determined to understand why the village is not welcoming its new arrival, Emily discovers strange parallels with the unsolved death of another young man, Connor, many years before. Susannah, desperate to find out what happened to Connor before she dies, urges Emily to investigate. And as she does, Emily learns that some people will do anything to keep their secrets safe.
Young Killian Melville is arguably the most brilliant architect of the age; passionate about his art, he is liked by everyone. So when he visits Sir Oliver Rathbone, in need of a lawyer to represent him over his alleged ‘breach of promise’ to marry the daughter of his patron, Rathbone agrees despite his misgvings.
The case is not an easy one. Zillah is beautiful and even-tempered, heiress to a fortune and a good friend. What more could any man want? And why would Melville risk losing the professional reputation he has worked all his life to build?
Frustrated by his client’s refusal to divulge any further information, and convined he is keeping something from him, Rathbone, his own professional integrity at stake, decides to ask his close friend Hester Latterly for an objective opinion about the case. She, meanwhile, has contacted William Monk to investigate a mysterious family matter from twenty years ago. Little do they realise that the three of them are about to tackle the most baffling and complex case with which they have ever been faced…
Despite Thomas Pitt’s success in the Whitechapel case, the secretive Inner Circle prevent his returning to Bow Street police as Superintendent. Pitt’s next task for Special Branch is to investigate Charles Voisy – the corrupt Inner Circle man Pitt defeated in court – who is standing for election as a Tory MP. Pitt must obtain information to stop Voisy’s climb to political power. Then Pitt is ordered to Southampton Row, scene of the hideous murder of a spiritual medium. As the link between the spiritualist and political figures is revealed, the whispers of scandal grow louder. And with Charlotte in hiding for safety, Pitt must turn to his sister-in-law, Emily, to help him solve one of his most high-profile cases yet…
Every night Hester Monk tends to women of the streets who have been injured as a result of their trade. But the injuries are becoming more serious, and now a body has been discovered in one of the area’s brothels. The dead man is the respected head of a successful railway company, Nolan Baltimore. With calls for the police to clean up the streets, Hester decides she must intervene to protect these women who stand to lose everything. Meanwhile her husband, William Monk, is investigating a possible fraud at Baltimore and Sons. As Monk endeavours to prevent a serious crime from taking place, he faces some staggering revelations, and finds that the time has come to confront his own demons – even if it means losing all he holds dear…
Thomas Pitt is summoned to the offices of Victor Narraway, head of the Imperial Secret Service. An ex-army officer and promising young diplomat has been shot and the prime suspect is the Egyptian mistress of a senior cabinet minister. But some things don’t add up at the scene of the murder. When the Egyptian Ambassador puts in a call to Prime Minister Gladstone, it seems a major diplomatic row is brewing. Thomas is convinced Narraway knows more than he claims, and Pitt’s wife Charlotte fears there could be involvement with the secret organisation that destroyed Pitt’s Metropolitan Police career and nearly cost him his life. Can Pitt tread the tense diplomatic tightrope between protecting justice, the security of his country, and the safety of his family?
When the Maude Idris docks at the Pool of London, laden with ebony, spices and first-grade tusks of ivory collected from her voyage to Zanzibar, Clement Louvain leaves four armed seamen on board to guard the precious cargo. But as soon as the relief for the night watch arrives ready for duty in the morning, he finds the ivory gone and one of the seamen dead. Hindered by his ignorance of the river and its customs, and ashamed of the fact that he so badly requires the huge fees that Louvain is prepared to pay, William Monk nevertheless begins his investigation into the theft and murder. Meanwhile Hester’s work at the refuge at Portpool Lane is encountering acute financial difficulties. Sick prostitutes are arriving daily and the medicines needed to help them are running out. When a man arrives promising to pay a huge amount of money for the care of one particular woman, Hester is astonished to meet him. He is none other than Clement Louvain. So who is the woman he is so generously helping? And why is he offering such a substantial sum? Will Monk discover what Louvain is hiding before it is too late?
In the last idyllic summer of 1914, the battle lines are already drawn. In Cambridge, the golden June days seem timeless. But for Joseph Reavley the summer is shattered by his parents’ deaths in a car accident. Bringing the terrible news, his brother reveals that their father, a retired MP, had been travelling to see him about a sinister plot he had discovered. Matthew’s job in the secret service means that he would understand the mysterious document their father possessed, but now it is nowhere to be found. Returning after the funeral with their two sisters, Joseph and Matthew become convinced that their parents’ house has been searched. As their suspicions grow, they visit the scene of the crash and find subtle evidence that their deaths may not have been accidental after all.
It’s March 1916, and Joseph Reavley is on sick leave and finding recovery slow and hard. His sister Hannah is caring for him at home, and it’s a delight to them both when Shanley Corcoran, an old friend, comes to visit. Corcoran confides in Joseph that he’s come very close to completing an invention that will paralyse the deadly German U-boats. Soon afterwards, however, the leading scientist on that project is found murdered, and it’s clear that someone has been betraying secrets to the enemy. Joseph’s brother Matthew, of the S.I.S., comes down to investigate, and together the two men embark on a search that will solve the crime and lead them to the spy.
It’s July 1917, and as the sun sets over No-man’s-land so Joseph Reavley’s heart sinks with it. As chaplain he must keep up the men’s morale, but as rumours of mutiny grow stronger he is losing any chance of getting through to them. After the death
of an officer, twelve soldiers are arrested, and it falls to Joseph to uncover the truth about their involvement.
Joseph’s brother Matthew, of the S.I.S, is also in pursuit of the truth, whilst struggling to come to terms with his part in the Peacemaker’s death. Approached by a Junior Cabinet Minister who is being blackmailed, Matthew learns of a plot to destroy the only men who can bring about lasting peace. As he embarks on an investigation Matthew knows his own life is in danger but thinks it a small price to pay to secure the future of millions of people.
Attending the party and taking a leading role in the ensuing investigation is one of the most beloved characters from Anne Perry’s Thomas Pitt series: Lady Vespasia Cumming-Gould.
Lady Vespasia’s friend Isobel has made a cruel remark about Gwendolen Kilmuir on the night Gwendolen was meant to have become engaged to the eligible Bertie Rosythe. Gwendolen flees the room, and the next morning her body is found in the lake in the gardens of the estate. It appears she has jumped from the bridge. The host, Omegus Jones and Vespasia decide to find who or what might have led Gwendolen to resort to such an extreme measure. They vow to make the guilty party seek forgiveness and expiation through the task of taking a sealed letter written by Gwendolen before her death to her mother up in the north of Scotland.
The journey will be both physically and emotionally arduous but will bring answers to some unexpected and profound questions.
The two figures had been on the bridge. He had grasped hold of her. To save her, or to push her?
Inspector William Monk is still feeling his way in a new post in the Thames River Police and knows he must solve the mystery to gain the respect of his men. Soon both he and Hester find themselves powerfully involved in the story of the dead woman, Mary Havilland, and her quest to vindicate her father, found dead two months previously. An engineer working for the Argyll Construction Company, James Havilland was convinced a major disaster would happen in the tunnels where London’s desperately needed new sewer system was being built. Maddened by his obsession, he’d apparently shot himself. Mary had never accepted that and now she was dead too. Was it chance or something more sinister?
In the latest compelling book in Anne Perry’s bestselling Pitt series, Inspector Thomas Pitt must navigate the upper echelons of society if he is to find a murderer bold enough to kill in Buckingham Palace.
Early one morning, Inspector Thomas Pitt is awoken by a message from his boss, Narraway. A maid has been murdered. The maid worked at Buckingham Palace and Narraway needs his must trusted man to deal with the investigation.
The suspects are narrowed down to a group of guests, meeting with the Prince of Wales to discuss the funding for a huge project: the Cape to Cairo railway. If the murderer isn’t found, the Queen will veto royal support for the scheme.
It rests with Pitt to solve the murder – in doing so he must reconcile his own concept of justice with those who feel it is within their right to make their own laws, whatever the consequences.
Once again, Inspector William Monk, now of the Thames River Police, must face a dangerous foe.
It’s 1864, and after a game of cat and mouse, Monk has captured Jericho Phillips, the man he suspects of brutally killing a young mudlark and running an evil child prostitution ring. In bringing Phillips to justice, Monk hopes to close down the ring and avenge the memory of Durban, his old commander, who was determined to capture Philips. However at trial justice does not prevail. Oliver Rathbone, Monk’s friend, is hired anonymously to represent the accused and when he proves that vital evidence is missing, Phillips is freed. As Monk begins the investigation again, venturing deeper into London’s murky underworld, he realises that Durban may have had his own reasons for pursuing Phillips, and shockingly, that secret support for Phillips may reach further into civilised society than anyone could ever have imagined…
Henry Rathbone arrives to spend Christmas at the Dreghorn family manor house near Ullswater. He is greeted by the news that the master of the house, Judah Dreghorn has slipped while crossing a stream in the grounds of the estate in the middle of the night, and drowned. Not only this, but Ashton Gower, recently released from prison, is slandering Judah’s name, claiming that his family rightfully owns the estate and that the forged deeds for which he was imprisoned were in fact genuine. To Rathbone and the two remaining Dreghorn brothers, also returning to the Lakes for Christmas, Judah’s mysterious death and Gower’s outrageous claims seem inextricably linked.
It’s 1859 and throughout Europe tremendous upheavals have taken place. Hester Latterly is nurse to the sick son of a German Baron and his family, who have moved to London from one of the many small principalities between Prussia and Bavaria – and the Baroness tells Hester about her kingdom’s famous royal family…
Handsome Prince Friedrich was one of just two heirs to the crown, considered the perfect match by every woman of the land. But during an affair with Countess Zorah Rostova, he meets the alluring and sophisticated Gisela – with whom he falls deeply in love. He can have Gisela or the crown, but not both. He chooses Gisela, marries her in Venice and, after many years, tragically dies in England.
Now, Countess Zorah, having accused the widowed Princess of murdering Friedrich, is being sued in the biggest slander trial of the century – and the only way that she can defend herself is to prove that Gisela is indeed guilty. But in doing so she must sully the greatest love story that the country has ever known, and that is enough to put her lawyer’s career in jeopardy, too. That lawyer is Oliver Rathbone, who calls on Investigator William Monk to help…
In the dead of night in a notorious area of Victorian London’s East End known as St Giles a factory girl stumbles over the bloody bodies of two City gentlemen. When Detective John Evan finally arrives at the scene, he is confronted by a most difficult investigation. First he must identify the men. Then he must find out why men of means and social standing would go to such a sordid area. Most importantly, who are their assailants? And how could they escape unharmed and unnoticed?
Mercifully the younger victim is not quite dead. Having sustained terrible internal injuries, he’s later released home from hospital severely traumatised and unable to speak – to be told that the other victim, his father, is dead, and Hester Latterly has been employed to help nurse him back to full recovery.
With too many obstacles impeding his progress, Evan finally enlists the aid of his old friend, William Monk, who, together with Hester’s help, must unravel one of his most complex and shocking cases yet.