Vices of My Blood
By Maureen Jennings
(McClelland & Stewart, Paperback, 9780771043321, 472pp.)
Publication Date: May 18, 2010
Other Editions of This Title: Paperback
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The compelling new novel by Canada’s answer to Anne Perry.
In his forties, the Reverend Charles Howard still cut an impressive figure. A married Presbyterian minister in Toronto’s east end, Howard was popular with the congregation that elected him, especially with the ladies, and most particularly with Miss Sarah Dignam. Respected in the community, Howard, as Visitor for the House of Industry, sat in judgment on the poor, assessing their applications for the workhouse.
But now Howard is dead, stabbed and brutally beaten by someone he invited into his office. His watch and boots are missing. Has some poor beggar he turned down taken his vengeance?
Murdoch’s investigation takes him into the arcane Victorian world of queer plungers — men who fake injury all the better to beg — and the destitute who had nowhere left to turn when they knocked on the Reverend Howard’s door.
Maureen Jennings’s Detective Murdoch series has been a hit from the start. Published to rave reviews, the first novel, Except the Dying, was shortlisted for both the Arthur Ellis and the Anthony first novel awards. The influential Drood Review picked Poor Tom Is Cold as one of its favourite mysteries of 2001. And Let Loose the Dogs was shortlisted for the 2004 Anthony Award for best historical mystery.
Three of the novels have been adapted for television, and four seasons of a television series, The Murdoch Mysteries, based on the characters from the novels, have been produced by Shaftesbury Films for CITY TV/Rogers, UKTV in Britain and distributed internationally by ITV/Granada international.
Born in the U.K., Jennings immigrated to Canada at age seventeen. She now lives in Toronto.
“Jennings brings to life a violent but vital society of astonishing contradictions.”
— New York Times Book Review
“Jennings has always had a fine eye for telling details and good characters.”
— Globe and Mail
“[Night’s Child is] a well-written, tightly plotted mystery. . . . We feel the chill of the poorly heated rooms.”
— Quill & Quire