LONG SPOON LANE (Police Proc-England–1800s) – Ex
Perry, Anne – 24th in Pitt series
Ballantine Books, 2005- Hardcover

Thomas Pitt is now a member of the Secret Branch having been forced out of Bow Street when Inspector Wetron became the head of the Inner Circle. When anarchists bomb homes, the head of the anarchists is murdered, and members of Parliament are lobbying for a bill to arm the police and allows ad hoc searches and questioning of servants, Pitt is forced to work with his enemy Sr. Charles Voisey to find out who is behind it all.

I had actually put off reading this book thinking “Oh no, another Inner Circle story,” but am so glad I finally picked it up and then I didn’t stop until I’d finished it. Perry is a masterful writer and an expert at using an historical incident as the nucleus of a compelling and suspenseful story. It is also timely as it deals with some of the issues of government access and privacy that are in today’s news. The plotting is impeccable; the story has several threads and good red herrings all of which are effectively tied up at the end. The usual wonderful characters with strong interconnected relationships are here, but it is the interaction between Pitt and Voisey that is particularly effective. No one creates sense of time and place in Victorian England better than Ms. Perry. She educates, entertains and makes you think. I would read the series in order but feel this book is one of the best.

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