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Cain His Brother: A William Monk Novel Paperback – January 26, 2010


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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Continuation of the Henry Monk series set in Victorian London, in which the detective is hired by a woman who thinks her missing husband may have been murdered by his brother.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Booklist

Perry's lingering fame from the murder she committed as an adolescent won't hurt her latest book's popularity, but there's no doubt that her historical mysteries would be critical and popular successes no matter what her background. Victorian detective William Monk returns, this time in one of the most challenging cases he's ever faced. Genevieve Stonefield begs Monk to find her missing husband, Angus, whom she fears has been killed by his twin brother, Caleb. Angus, a respected businessman, loyal husband and father, and pillar of the community, has disappeared after a visit to Caleb, who's as different from Angus as it's possible to be; he's a violent thief, ruffian, and blackguard who lives in one of London's most dangerous slums. Genevieve's fears that Angus is dead at Caleb's hand seem well founded; all Monk has to do is find the means, the motive, the opportunity--and the body. But the more he investigates, the more bizarre twists and frustrating dead ends he encounters, until his persistence finally breaks the case wide open in a stunning climax that surprises even the unflappable Monk. This one deserves high marks for superb plotting, fine writing, intriguing characters, and outstanding historical detail. Buy multiple copies. Emily Melton --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Series: William Monk (Book 6)
  • Paperback: 432 pages
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books; Reprint edition (January 26, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0345514025
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345514028
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.9 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (69 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #138,768 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Anne Perry is the bestselling author of two acclaimed series set in Victorian England: the William Monk novels, including Dark Assassin and The Shifting Tide, and the Charlotte and Thomas Pitt novels, including The Cater Street Hangman, Calandar Square, Buckingham Palace Gardens and Long Spoon Lane. She is also the author of the World War I novels No Graves As Yet, Shoulder the Sky, Angels in the Gloom, At Some Disputed Barricade, and We Shall Not Sleep, as well as six holiday novels, most recently A Christmas Grace. Anne Perry lives in Scotland.

Customer Reviews

I always finish these books with great anticipation of the next.
joneslkr
This time I actually 'guessed' the plot quite early, but had to read to the end to find out if I was right and the reason.
Penelopedot
I especially enjoy her character development and the geographic and historical background as well as the plot.
Reese E. Otts

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

19 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Ann E. Nichols on March 31, 2001
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Today I read a used first edition that I bought, so part of my review is my memory of the first time I read it. Unlike some other mysteries I'd reread lately, I had no difficulty remembering the main points -- they made too strong an impression.
I thought I knew what was going on by page five. I was correct in one supposition, but the truth was far stranger than I'd imagined.
For a time it may seem that the typhoid epidemic in evil twin Caleb's stomping grounds is irrelevant, although interesting in itself if you care about medical history. I liked learning about Hester's version of oral rehydration therapy and blanched when I read about burning tobacco leaves for fumigation. Do not allow yourself to become impatient. It's all relevant and that will be revealed in due time.
Is Angus' wife, Genevieve, a cold-hearted accessory to his murder? Did Caleb murder Angus? Is Angus still alive? Why did the author give him the same name as one of the Pitts' cats? (You may ask, but you won't get an answer.) Since we have another Angus, will an Archie show up?
What about Lord Ravensbrook, who was guardian to the Stonefield brothers? What's his role in this tragedy? Mr. Niven was unwittingly ruined by his friend, Angus. Does he really hold no grudge?
Who is the lovely Drusilla and why is she seeking out William Monk? She's a member of Society, as he isn't. Certainly her many charms give Monk the opportunity to unfavorably compare Hester to her in his mind. Will he live to regret this or does Hester have a rival? Does Hester even care?
If you're a fan of Oliver Rathbone, don't worry. He'll have plenty to do during the trial scene. Hester isn't neglected, either. I thoroughly enjoyed her solution to one person's nasty little trap for our hero.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 7, 2002
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This is the best book by this author that I have read so far.
Perry's writing style is unobtrusive, somewhat given to unclear pronouns, but generally solid.
I found it interesting that nothing seemed to differ between this setting, in 1859, and the setting of the author's Pitt novels, in the late 19th century, except that the Pitts have telephones. I wonder how authentic that is. I found no obvious errors, except that, in keeping with the rest of Perry's books, the women seem very independent for the period.
Perry has come up with what must be one of the best characterization hooks ever invented. William Monk suffers from amnesia. He has reason to think he was an unpleasant person, a person capable of wronging others, in the past. But... he can never know what, exactly, he did. I would have liked to see a few more original touches in his *current* character, but it's still a fascinating idea.
The plot of Cain his Brother is outstanding. A minor consistency error here and there does not detract from its drama. A man has murdered his twin brother -- or has he? I thought I had the secret figured out several times, but I was wrong. But when the answer was revealed, it made perfect sense. Perry sometimes has surprise twists out of nowhere at the end of her books, but this time she got it exactly right. I remained unclear on one thing --Ravenstone's motivation -- but that may be my oversight.
This is a very entertaining historical mystery which I strongly recommend.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Lynn Harnett VINE VOICE on February 2, 2004
Format: Hardcover
Perry's Victorian London mystery, featuring the amnesiac ex-Inspector William Monk and the Florence Nightingale-trained nurse Hester Latterly, revolves around the disappearance of a model husband and father of five with a successful business.
Angus Stonefield disappears on a visit to his vicious and violent twin brother in the slums and Angus' lovely wife is convinced that this time Caleb - the twin - has murdered her husband. While investigating, Monk runs into Hester Latterly setting up a make-shift hospital to deal with a serious outbreak of typhoid in the filthy and overcrowded slums.
Hester and Monk's relationship remains tensely ambivalent and Monk's bitter interior monologues become tediously repetitious. This is a heavily padded novel with an overworked plot device but Perry's fans will enjoy her gritty depiction of hopeless poverty and stark class divisions.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Cheryl Farley on April 27, 2002
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I love Anne Perry's ability to twist and wind through a story and keep you hanging until the last pages. I also love her well researched novels that offer such exsquisite detail about Victorian London, especially the class differences (particularly in this book). Unfortunately I found the conclusion of this novel truly unoriginal and disappointing. The result it ended with was a thought that had ocurred to me earlier in the novel, but I doubted it just because of the lack of inspiration it required. I am more fond of the Monk/Latterly series than the Pitts series, and "Cain..." is one of the better stories among the Perry novels, but I would definitely read it knowing in advance that the ending doesn't compare with the rest of the story. If you want a truly excellent Anne Perry book, read "The Face of a Stranger" (the first Monk/Latterly novel). A great read.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By jan the babe on November 27, 2012
Format: Paperback
Stupidest ending ever. The writing was repetitive. If I had to read a 'well-cut coat' (he had wealth) more than 20 times and "she had a face that showed intelligence" a few dozen times, I was ready to give up. The plot meandered - it took forever to get to the next point. Just don't bother. Find a good book. Go do something fun. Absolutely don't have this as your only read on an airplane. Really.
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