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Murder on Lexington Avenue (Gaslight Mystery) Hardcover – Bargain Price, June 1, 2010

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Product Details

  • Series: Gaslight Mystery
  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Berkley Hardcover (June 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0425234371
  • ASIN: B0043RT8DQ
  • Product Dimensions: 8.1 x 5.6 x 1.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (50 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,140,188 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

In Thompson's fine 12th mystery set in turn-of-the-20th-century New York City (after 2009's Murder on Waverly Place), Det. Sgt. Frank Malloy investigates the murder of Nehemiah Wooten, who was bludgeoned with a loving cup Wooten won for sculling at Harvard more than 30 years earlier. A follower of Alexander Graham Bell's views on eugenics, Wooten was opposed to two deaf people getting married on the grounds that such unions would produce only deaf offspring, an attitude that earned him an enemy within his own home. Wooten's attractive 16-year-old daughter, Electra, who could not hear, was hoping to marry a deaf teacher. When Malloy visits Wooten's pregnant widow and her water breaks, he calls in midwife Sarah Brandt. Thanks to her access to the victim's household, Sarah proves invaluable in helping him uncover the killer. While the psychology of the crime is less complicated than some might prefer, Thompson does a solid job bringing the past to life. (June)
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From Booklist

Thompson's latest Gaslight Mystery finds police detective Frank Malloy investigating the murder of a wealthy businessman whose only daughter is deaf, just like Frank's son. Midwife Sarah Brandt becomes involved in the investigation when the wife of the victim goes into unexpected labor after hearing the news of her husband's death. The politics of deaf education play an important role in the story, as the daughter, educated only to read lips, was secretly learning sign language from an instructor at the New York Institution for the Deaf and Dumb, the same school attended by Malloy's young son. Thompson expertly weaves in details about the history of the era and the educational system without detracting from the well-paced and suspenseful story. Despite a potentially confusing plot with too many suspects, Frank and Sarah's investigation makes for a compelling and quick read with believable twists and a satisfying conclusion. Series fans will be thrilled with this latest entry; recommend to fans of the Molly Murphy mysteries. --Jessica Moyer

More About the Author

Edgar® Nominated author Victoria Thompson writes the Gaslight Mystery Series, set in turn-of-the-century New York City and featuring midwife Sarah Brandt. Her latest is MURDER ON FIFTH AVENUE. She also contributed to the award winning writing textbook MANY GENRES/ONE CRAFT. A popular speaker, Victoria teaches in the Seton Hill University master's program in writing popular fiction. She lives in Central PA with her husband and a very spoiled little dog.

Customer Reviews

Well Written and keeps you guessing till the end.
Amazon Customer
Everyone should read them: Fine writing, fabulous stories, good characters and a talented author who make their lives reading rich.
My Three Cents
I began reading this series when they first began in paperback.
Amazon Customer

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

26 of 26 people found the following review helpful By jenniferk66 on June 4, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The series seemed to stumble a bit with the last release, Murder on Waverly Place. This time, the murder mystery is constructed much better, the witty interaction between Frank Malloy and Sarah Brandt (that seemed to be lacking in the last book) is there, and the requisite historical facts-of-the-time are vital parts of the plot(Princeton's re-naming, the eugenics movement, etc.).

Unlike the recent books, which involved more of Sarah's world, this book's mystery is related to something involving Malloy (schools for the deaf- and their varying methods). This book gets to balance the mystery with insights into Malloy--We get to know how grateful he is for Sarah's interference in his life- which has in turn improved his son's quality of life. Since he is no longer hesitant to include and share details of the case with Sarah, and they both get to play key roles in solving the mystery.

There is a delightful scene when Sarah recreates for Frank a bit of sign language for him (which she doesn't know the meaning), but for those longing for Malloy and Sarah to finally acknowledge their feelings, well, the progress remains slow.

It's a breeze of a read, and it will be hard to wait so long for the next installment (the author seems to be setting up the mystery surrounding what happened to Catherine before she came to live with Sarah).
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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Janlynn on June 3, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I am a huge fan of Victoria Thompson and this is one of the best books in the Gaslight Mysteries. The reader learns much more about Detective Sergeant Frank Malloy, in fact he is a more prominent character than Sarah herself. We begin to see that the relationship between Sarah and Frank might be able to overcome obstacles to their growing romance. Is there a softening, however slight, by Sarah's father toward Frank. Frank's mother is starting to take on a more human personality. As Sarah states at the end, could the differences between be slipping away? This reader hopes so!
The mystery in the novel is solid and well conceived, with a surprise at the end. Excellent addition to this wonderful series.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Harriet Klausner #1 HALL OF FAME on June 1, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Mr. Edward Higginbotham of the Institution for the Improved Instruction of Deaf Mutes visits businessman and school patron Nehemiah Wooten at the latter's office. He plans to discuss with Wooten the desires of the man's pretty sixteen year old daughter Electra, a student at the school; she wants to marry a New York Institute for the Deaf and Dumb teacher Adam Oldham. Higginbotham finds Wooten dead.

Because NYPD Detective Sergeant Frank Malloy has a son who attends the "Lexington School" that Higginbotham runs and the witness asks for him, he is assigned the lead as the brass believes he brings insider information. This proves true as he understands the deep philosophical divide between the rival two schools teaching deaf children. The DS quickly knows the murder weapon is a brass loving cup and learns the deceased is a believer in eugenics as lectured recently by Alexander Graham Bell; as such Wooten opposed two deaf people marrying out of fear they will pass on the hearing flaw to their offspring. However, Malloy makes little progress so when a second homicide in the Wooten family occurs, he hesitantly asks midwife Sarah Brandt, who has helped him on previous Manhattan murder mysteries, to provide him advice.

The latest Gaslight Era murder mystery is a terrific entry that uses the background like references to Bell to set the era while also providing insight into the two predominate education theories of teaching deaf students. The whodunit is complex as Malloy works his investigation assisted by Sarah, but has too many suspects from family, business and school to rule out. Readers will appreciate the latest Victoria Thompson's historical investigate tale.

Harriet Klausner
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18 of 23 people found the following review helpful By B. K. Walker on June 17, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I waited two days after I had finished Murder on Lexington Avenue to write this review hoping the book would have grown on me, but I was deluding myself.

After reading Ms. Thompson's previous book last year, Murder on Waverly Place, I gave a positive review with the caveat that we needed to see some character development with Sarah, Frank, and all the supporting characters. I was not alone. In looking at the 20 reviews that were written about Waverly Place, the common thread was the same: Character development was lacking; it was too talky; and the relationship between Sarah and Frank was flat and please fix that in the next installment.

Waiting patiently the ensuing year for Murder on Lexington Avenue, I was sure she would have listened to her readers and would surely provide the character/romance development her readers have been asking for. I was wrong. In fact, I could not find any redeeming qualities about any literary aspect of this book.

There was no scene setting - they may as well have been on a plain, sceneless stage and the story could have taken place at any point in time. The sentences were stunted, with a noun, verb, preposition and a period. It felt as if this were the author's first attempt at writing. The dialogue was wooden and felt contrived. The story line was pointless and there was absolutely no character development in any of the characters. Nobody progressed. I felt as if I know less about all the characters now than I did two or three books ago. Frank and Sarah may as well have been total strangers and if they were, there would probably be more spark than what we see in this book. To call their relationship tepid would be an overstatement. A more accurate word to describe them would be, indifferent.
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