A Barker and Llewelyn Mystery by Will Thomas
Review: After a break of nearly 6 years, London Private Enquiry Agent Cyrus Barker and his young assistant Thomas Llewellyn return in Fatal Inquiry, the sixth mystery in this series and a case that will get them involved with a criminal introduced in the first book of this series, Some Danger Involved.
Sebastian Nightwine and Barker are known to have had a long and problematic history including the fact that Barker is sure that his brother was killed by Nightwine. It is now April 1886 and Nightwine has been awarded diplomatic immunity by Her Majesty's government for his past crimes in order to carry out a secret assignment for the good of England. Barker is told by Inspector Terence Poole of Scotland Yard to stay away from Nightwine and by no means interfere with his mission. If he does, he will jailed himself. To Barker, this mandate is unacceptable. Barker suspects that while he is in London, Nightwine's primary objective will be to destroy him while enriching himself. When a man is killed, Nightwine makes sure Barker is accused of the crime. Unable to prove his innocence, Barker — and Llewellyn — immediately go into hiding. But Scotland Yard has put a hold on their money, leaving them with no financial resources. They must use every tactic they know to go underground and disappear. Yet, they must surface long enough to stop Nightwine from accomplishing his goal as they believe Scotland Yard is being deceived, and whatever Nightwine is tasked to do, it is not something that will benefit England.
There is a strong sense of time and place in Fatal Inquiry, from the detailed descriptions of the vividly drawn characters right down to the clothing they wear and the food that they eat. There are interesting references to historical secret organizations — the Knights Templar, the Knights Hospitallers and the Free Masons — as well as some interesting facts of the time (e.g. the introduction of the first ambulance service in London). All this is a solid backdrop to the well-structured and captivating storyline and the engaging characters of Barker and Llewellyn. A most welcome return for this pair.
Special thanks to guest reviewer Betty of The Betz Review for contributing her review of Fatal Enquiry.
Acknowledgment: Minotaur Books provided a copy of Fatal Enquiry for this review.
Review Copyright © 2014 — Hidden Staircase Mystery Books — All Rights Reserved
Selected reviews of other mysteries by this author …
The Black Hand
Touchstone (Trade Paperback), July 2008
ISBN-13: 9781416558958; ISBN-10: 1416558950
Anatomy of Evil
Minotaur Books (Hardcover), May 2015
ISBN-13: 9781250041050; ISBN-10: 1250041058
Location(s) referenced in Fatal Enquiry: London, England
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Fatal Enquiry by Will Thomas — A Barker and Llewelyn Mystery
Publisher: Minotaur Books
Publication Date: May 2014
List Price: $25.99
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Page Author: Lance Wright
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