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Winner of the CWA 2009 Cartier Diamond Dagger Award.
Andrew Taylor is a prize-winning and competent crime novelist particularly renowned for his lovely Lydmouth mysteries so I approached this winner of the Crime Writers’ Association Historical Dagger award with great joy. He is a beautiful writer and his choice of subject highly intriguing; a murder mystery surrounding the tutor to the young Edgar Allen Poe. Long (400 pages), atmospheric and complex. It conjures up the dirt of Dickensian London beautifully and it has had some astounding reviews.
Interweaving real and fictional elements, The American Boy is a major new literary historical crime novel in the tradition of An Instance of the Fingerpost and Possession. England 1819: Thomas Shield, a new master at a school just outside London, is tutor to a young American boy and the boy's sensitive best friend, Charles Frant. Drawn to Frant's beautiful, unhappy mother, Thomas becomes caught up in her family's twisted intrigues. Then a brutal crime is committed, with consequences that threaten to destroy Thomas and all that he has come to hold dear. Despite his efforts, Shield is caught up in a deadly tangle of sex, money, murder and lies -- a tangle that grips him tighter even as he tries to escape from it. And what of the strange American child, at the heart of these macabre events, yet mysterious -- what is the secret of the boy named Edgar Allen Poe?
Praise for The American Boy:
'Hugely entertaining. Its beguiling story and atmospheric evocation of Regency London and the winter landscapes of Gloucestershire cry out for a wingback chair by a blazing fire' Observer
'In the end, the myriad mysteries of The American Boy are all neatly accounted for, as one would expect from a thriller writer such as Taylor. But he has transcended any limitations of genre in this novel, for it is a wonderful book, richly composed and beautifully written, an enthralling read from start to finish'
'Creates an atmosphere close to Sarah Waters' Fingersmith in the convincing depiction of a sadistic underworld. Taylor 's deeply absorbing and beautifully written book is a fitting tribute to the founding father of crime fiction'
'A most artful and delightful book, that will both amuse and chill, and it will have you desperate to search out a quiet corner to continue your acquaintance with it'
'Taylor spins a magnificent tangential web! The book is full of sharply-etched details evoking Dickensian London and is also a love story, shot through with the pain of a penniless and despised lover. This novel has the literary values which should take it to the top of the lists'
Scotland on Sunday
Publication date: 16/01/2007
Publisher: HarperPerennial an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers
|Publication date:||16th January 2007|
|Publisher:||HarperPerennial an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers|
|Genres:||eBook Favourites, Historical Fiction, Thriller / Suspense,|
|Categories:||Crime & mystery, Historical fiction,|
Andrew Taylor has been a full-time writer since 1981, and has written over twenty books. He has been described by The Times as 'One of Britain's best writers of psychological suspense.'Having decided to become a writer at the age of ten, he claims that it was his newly recognised facility for writing stories, teamed with the idea that a writer's life consisted of not wearing a tie to work, that first attracted him to the career. More recently however he has suggested that 'one of the attractions of writing fiction is that it allows you to create your own little ...More About Andrew Taylor