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Acceptable Loss (William Monk) Hardcover – August 9, 2011
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“[An] engrossing page-turner . . . There’s no one better at using words to paint a scene and then fill it with sounds and smells than Anne Perry.”—The Boston Globe
“Brilliant . . . a page-turning thriller . . . blending compelling plotting with superbly realized human emotion and exquisite period detail.”—Jeffery Deaver, author of Edge
The Shifting Tide
“The mysterious and dangerous waterfront world of London’s ‘longest street,’ the Thames, comes to life.”—South Florida Sun-Sentinel
Death of a Stranger
“[A] tantalizing puzzle . . . At last, in Death of a Stranger, the secrets of Monk’s past are dramatically revealed.”—The New York Times Book Review
Funeral in Blue
“No one writes more elegantly than Perry, nor better conjures up the rich and colorful tapestry of London in the Victorian era. But for all its arcane setting and stylistic eloquence, Funeral in Blue is an old-style private eye novel—and an extremely good one.”—The Plain Dealer
About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
A small-time hoodlum named Mickey Parfitt is found in the river, beaten and strangled. Evidence points to Rupert Cardew, a dissolute young man of means whose long-suffering father has bailed him out of one tight spot after another. Hester is appalled, since she knows and likes Rupert, who has contributed a considerable amount of money to her clinic. Still, she knows that it is Monk's duty to follow the evidence wherever it may lead, and William launches an investigation into Parfitt's and Cardew's activities and associates. Hester and Scuff also do some sleuthing on their own. Eventually, Monk and Hester suspect that someone with a great deal of power and influence may be behind Parfitt's death and other monstrous crimes.
Perry has often touched on the subjects of hypocrisy, social inequality, and the misuse of wealth and authority in Victorian England. It was a time when men and women of integrity and good will faced an uphill battle in their efforts to help the poor and oppressed. Hester and Monk must decide whether to uncover the truth, however damaging it may turn out to be. William could be destroyed were he to unmask a villain who has both the power and authority to strike back.
"Acceptable Loss" takes a while to catch fire, but as the story progresses, the action picks up nicely. The novel has electrifying courtroom scenes, exciting twists and turns, and an explosive and violent conclusion. Once again, Perry captures the cruel underbelly of Victorian London, with its degenerate, depraved, and self-indulgent thrill-seekers who prey on the weak and vulnerable. She describes the streets and ambiance of the city vividly, skillfully delineates her lively cast of characters, and makes effective use of dialect. In addition, she touchingly explores the loving relationship between Hester, Monk, and Scuff, who have formed a tight and cohesive bond. Although justice is ultimately served, this tragic episode will inflict deep psychological scars that may never completely disappear.
This book was so-so, not her worst, but certainly not her best. One thread that Perry continues within in every book is how brilliant Monk is. Sure, he has his moments, but it's usually Hester that discovers the key evidence and forms the correct conclusions. And yes, we all know Hester went to the Crimea to nurse, and yes, she was brave, faced rats, unimaginable horrors, etc, etc, but does the reader have to be beaten over the head with that in every book? Hester should be approaching sainthood by now. I give it a 2 1/2 star, because compared to some of her other Monk books, this one failed to deliver.
This one is especially good. Just when you think you know Anne Perry's characters, they surprise you in a way that real people surprise you -- for good or bad. This book has all of Anne Perry's best qualities: complexity, subtlety, sense of place and atmosphere, and profound moral questions. It also has one of the most intense and surprising final 35 pages of any of her books.
The story is a continuation from "Execution Dock" although it's not really necessary to read that first. This stands on its own.
And be aware, the last part is almost impossible to put down. You may miss work...or dinner.....