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A Tincture of Murder (A Lord Danvers Mystery) (The Lord Danvers Mysteries Book 4) [Kindle Edition]

Donna Fletcher Crow
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)

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Book Description


Lord and Lady Danvers—everyone’s favorite Victorian sleuths— accept an extraordinary new challenge that combines murder, madness, and a famed 19th century murder trial that British and American lawyers still talk about today.

The case begins when several of the destitute women who took refuge at The Magdalen House—an “Asylum for Poor, Degraded Females”—die under mysterious circumstances.

The Magdalen House—located in a notorious slum of the City of York—was established by Frederick Danvers, Lord Charles’s younger brother, who shocked the family by taking Holy Orders, and then by choosing to live near his church in one of the poorest neighborhoods in England.

But the cleric’s saintly works may come to a scandalous end when news of the women’s deaths spreads. The young Danvers is in trouble and Danvers family honor is at stake.

At first, Lord Danvers is reluctant to get involved in a criminal matter that seems so sordid. But when a devastating fire ravages Norwood Park, the Danver’s ancestral home, Charles and Antonia are forced to seek temporary residence elsewhere. Freddie’s plea for assistance includes an invitation to stay at elegant Wandseley Hall. Charles reconsiders—and soon finds himself struggling to answer two overarching questions: Are the unexplained deaths the result of natural causes? Or is an insane poisoner at large in York—perhaps a madman among Charles and Antonia’s own acquaintances?

While Charles investigates, Lady Antonia is drawn into helping feed the impoverished women and children living in the asylum.

And death is closer to home than anyone suspected. Was a servant’s untimely death an accident as first believed? Or something more sinister? And who set the fire that nearly destroyed Norwood Park?

"A Tincture of Murder" is the fourth Lord Danvers Victorian True-Crime Mystery—a riveting thriller built around actual events. Along with the entire city of York, Charles and Antonia are swept into the incredible disclosures at the trial of William Dove. The legal principles that were debated during the case still affect contemporary murder trials a century and a half later.

Product Details

  • File Size: 614 KB
  • Print Length: 164 pages
  • Publisher: Greenbrier Book Company (November 30, 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #400,946 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It's all in the details . . . December 10, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
When you pick up a period mystery you do so because you want to experience all that period has to offer. Donna Fletcher Crow delivers on that expected promise, weaving details about clothing, decorative style, and odors - so many odors! Add taste and touch, and you have an idea of how thorough this author is when it comes to her ability to weave the threads of the mystery together. She writes with such attention to detail that you're constantly analyzing new evidence and never certain that you're on the right track. The surprise ending is truly that.

Several times while reading I experienced the sensation that I was getting a bonus. Most authors do well to tie up all the loose ends, or remember to weave plot elements together so that there are little clues along the way. Mrs. Crow has the heart of a teacher, imparting knowledge in such a way that it becomes a natural part of the life of the novel; at the same time, leaving the reader wanting more.

I gave it five stars because of the intricacy of the storytelling, and the fact that this is a mystery that makes you think even after you've read the last word.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars VICTORIAN TRUE-CRIME MYSTERY.A MUST READ! January 27, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition
This was Donna Fletcher Crows fourth Lord Danvers Victorian True-Crime Mystery. I found it interesting and well written. Ms. Crow did a lot of research and there was much detail as to how things were at the time this case took place.

I found the book invigorating which made me want to know who the murderer was and why they were doing it. I personally was surprised by who and why they committed the crime. Believe me it was the last person you would suspect. You will ask yourself, what do a fire , deaths of a maid and poor women at Magdalen House, and a soup kitchen have in common. You will find out what at the very end of this must read book. I know it had me wanting to read more.

Rating: 5

Heat Rating: Sweet

Reveiwed By: Susan Faatz,My Book Addiction Reviews
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars complex story, a gripping read January 26, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition
This is the newest installment in the Lord Danvers mystery series. Freddie, Lord Danvers younger brother, has taken the cloth, and is now ministering to the poor at the Magdalen house. It isn't unusual in this neighborhood to see women and children in poor health, and death is everywhere, but when Freddie tells Charles and Antonia that he suspects that more women are dying at the women's shelter than usual, this couple immediately try to help ascertain the reason. Poison soon becomes suspected, but try as she might Tonia can't uncover the culprit. Overlaid in the story, is a sensational trial of a man who poisons his wife, which only reinforces Tonia's suspicions that poison is the reason why all these women are dying.
The suffering of the poor in 19th century England--or for any country for that matter--is as gritty and real in this book as any true crime you can read. England in on the cusp of change, and though Tonia is chomping at the bit to resolve the murder, and change the laws of men, this will be her toughest case yet.
Thoroughly enjoyable read. Highly recommended.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition
It's interesting to read this novel at the same time as watching Downton Abbey on TV. Both recreate the divided society of England's recent past convincingly, with pleasing characters and mysterious plots. And both are high on my list of favorites.

Donna Fletcher Crow's A Tincture of Murder starts with a terrifying scene that shocked and startled me, not having read any reviews before starting the book. But life goes on, successfully, and a deeper, more shocking darkness awaits, not in the halls and luxury of a rich man's home, but on the dirty streets of York, within sight of the famous York Minster.

Dickens would approve the author's depiction of orphan homes and miserable poverty. Modern England would approve the generous spirit that declares even society's rejects should be given food and hope. And common sense agrees that wide crinoline skirts might suffer as their wearers walk through the muck and murk of a downtrodden street.

The blend of well-researched history and intriguing mystery goes well with this mix of rich world poor world sensibilities. Take a balloon ride over the English countryside. Enjoy the waters at Harrogate. Then ponder the ingredients of precious home-brewed medicines. But most of all, enjoy this fast-flowing novel with pleasing characters, convincing locations, and thought-provoking social order. In the end all will be resolved, lives saved, and hope restored.

Disclosure: I was lucky enough to be given a free ecopy of this novel and I thoroughly enjoyed reading it. Now I need to find more Lord Danvers tales.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very cute mystery! January 12, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition
A Tincture of Murder is a very cute mystery set in England during the mid 1800's. Though this is the first Lord Danvers mystery I have read, I did not feel that I was missing too much by hopping in on the fourth book. I could still appreciate the characters and the mystery.

Fredrick, Lord Davers brother, is a reverend in the very poor section of London and has set up a house to help women of ill repute who have become pregnant. The women start dying and Freddie believes foul play is involved. Since Lord Danvers has the reputation of an amateur dective, Freddie begs him to come help him find the perpetrator of these crimes.

Due to circumstances beyond control, Lord and Lady Danvers travel to London to help Freddie in spite of the fact that Lord Danvers would rather not go, thinking Freddie has gotten himself in trouble with a woman. Little do they know, that they will not only help solve the murders, but also help improve the conditions of the women they are helping.

I loved the charitable work that was described in this book. You can tell that Ms. Crow must have a heart for helping those in need, due to all the focus she put on that in this book.

The historical aspect of this book was very interesting. I enjoyed seeing the case of William Dove played out. His was one of the first in which insanity was used as an actual cause for his murdering his wife. And the case of the children's home was certainly more disturbing when I found out that it actually happened.

I appreciate all of the research that went into this book and will be looking forward to reading more of this series! I would recommend it to anyone who loves mysteries set in this time period.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Another Good Read from Donna Fletcher crow
I have all Ms. Crow's mysteries except the one that is available only in digital form. They are most entertaining.
Published 16 months ago by TLMS
4.0 out of 5 stars A Tincture of Murder
New favorite author. I love this genre of mystery and she does a great job portraying her characters in every book.
Published 20 months ago by Scribe
5.0 out of 5 stars Most enjoyable
Another great story from Donna Fletcher Crow. In her mystery stories she has the knack of holding one attention and interest right to the end of the story.
Published 21 months ago by Eunice Smith
5.0 out of 5 stars Novel of Novels
Donna Fletcher Crow's deliciously mysterious setting, subtle yet charming characters and beautiful word flow makes A Tincture of Murder yet another winner for this talented, highly... Read more
Published on April 5, 2013 by Amateur
4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable light read
Good story. Not too heavy and gave the clues as it went along so that the reader could solve the mystery with the heroine.
Published on February 28, 2013 by Snows Acre
5.0 out of 5 stars Mystery Maven
Continues to be a nice read. Excellent settings, interesting plot and I love the characters. Probably time for another child in their lives. Read more
Published on February 21, 2013 by Mystery Maven
4.0 out of 5 stars A Tincture of Murder
Donna Fletcher Crow doesn't disappoint in the latest Lord Danvers mystery. The story takes place mostly set in the Magdalen House, a charitable home for "wayward women". Read more
Published on January 31, 2013 by lighthouse88
4.0 out of 5 stars A Story about Poisons
In this book poisons were used to kill people and abort babies and sometimes to kill the mother, too. Danvers brother works as part of his calling in a home for unwed mothers. Read more
Published on January 23, 2013 by Ulla
4.0 out of 5 stars Women's rights, or the lack of them
I felt like there were gaps in the story line, from one location, or an idea, to another. Other than that, I liked the book and the historical setting that made clear the... Read more
Published on January 20, 2013 by dmriverview
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More About the Author

Donna Fletcher Crow, who lives in Idaho with her husband of 46 years, is the mother of four adult children, grandmother of 10 and author of thirty-some books, mostly novels dealing with British history. Her best known book is the epic historical novel Glastonbury, The Novel of Christian England, which was awarded First Place, Historical Fiction, by the National Federation of Press Women.

After almost 10 years in the publishing wilderness Donna is reentering the fray with The Monastery Murders, a series of ecclesiastical mysteries featuring Felicity Howard, an American woman studying for the Anglican priesthood in a monastery in remote Yorkshire. When Felicity's favorite monk is bludgeoned to death she finds herself learning about a lot more than theoretical theology. A Very Private Grave, the first in the series will be released by Monarch Books (Lion Hudson) in May 2010 in the UK and next Sept. in the US by Kregel Books.

She says, "I write historical novels and contemporaries that draw heavily on historical background, because I believe it is vitally important that we not loose touch with our rich historical heritage. Those who have gone before us have worked too hard and suffered too much to preserve the privileges we enjoy for us to forget their stories. Reading of the triumphs of the faithful in ages past can inspire and strengthen us for our own challenging times."

Donna is an enthusiastic gardener, enjoying the challenge of growing an English cottage garden in the Idaho desert. You can visit her garden at
She also enjoys drinking tea with family and friends and hearing from her readers. You can write to her at


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