The VV has recently read a copy of Devoured by D E Meredith, a Victorian 'forensic' mystery to be published by Allison and Busby.
Devoured is the first in a series of ‘Hatton and Roumande’ mysteries. It begins in London in 1856, a time of great industry and invention - but also of exploration, with scientists travelling abroad and discovering the untamed jungles where entirely new species of life are found; whether they be plant or animal.
African Tribal masks
Back home in ‘civilised’ England, where there is a growing obsession with the collection of specimens, the glamorous Lady Bessingham is found murdered in her bedroom, surrounded by an exotic array of fossils and African tribal masks. At this point, Professor Adolphus Hatton and his morgue assistant, Albert Roumande, are called in to examine the scene of the crime as well as the state of the corpse, employing new forensic skills to ascertain the cause of death.
Victorian fossil collection
But Lady Bessingham’s murder is not to be a single event. All too soon our medical ‘detectives’ will join forces with Scotland Yard’s Inspector Adams, to follow a trail of murders which will all prove to be connected via a series of letters that, if published, might threaten the very faith upon which society is based. For some, that risk to the status quo is simply too awful to contemplate.
For more on the author, D E Meredith, along with samples from Devoured and information on the facts that inspired the writing of the book, please see this link.