THE LIMEHOUSE TEXT (Licensed Investigators-England-Victorian) – VG+
Thomas, Will - 3rd in series
Touchstone, 2006 – US Hardcover – ISBN: 9780743273343

Private enquiry agent Cyrus Barker and his assistant Thomas Llewelyn discover a pawn ticket in the suit of Thomas’ predecessor, Quong, who had been murdered. The ticket leads to a rare book on forbidden martial arts techniques, stolen from a Chinese monastery. Many people want this book and many die, nearly including Barker himself, as he and Thomas try to protect themselves, save the book and discover who killed Quong.

It is always a delight to read the newest book in this series. Will Thomas paints a vivid picture of turn-of-the-19th Century London and the characters in it. Barker is delightfully enigmatic; we learn only bits of him with each book. Llewelyn is an impatient young man who has already seen much of the harsher side of life and yet is still somewhat naïve. The supporting characters, including Ham the pug, are fully drawn and add great dimension to the story. The plot is entertaining and even with the “gather the suspects” scene at the end, I was intrigued to learn how Barker determined the killer. I hope this series continues for a long time to come. If you’ve not as yet discovered Will Thomas and enjoy a Holmes-style investigator, I highly recommend these.

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