Brilliant historical crime novel

Mid 1880s

is the time in which the book The Gods of Gotham, written by Lyndsey Fay, takes place. Europeans are fleeing poverty for a better life in the “New World” First stop is New York City (Gotham City). The book is the first in a planned series.

 

Timothy Wilde – an involuntary Police officer

Timothy Wilde works as a bartender in New York. When a major fire destroys the bar he works in, the home he lives in and all of his savings, he is forced to change course in life. His morally untrustworthy brother gets a job for him as a police officer, a profession that is brand new and very dangerous. One night on patrol he encounters a girl covered in blood who tells an unlikely story.  Someone is brutally and systematicaly killing children … Tim reluctantly takes lead on the case.

 

Characters

Lyndsay Faye has certainly succeeded with the characters. Timothy Wilde is an obvious hero figure and his brother, a charming thug on a destructive path. Mercy, the subject of Timothy’s  love, seemed at first to be a stereotype, but turned out to be surprisingly complex. Adding a dangerous brothel mother, an eccentric doctor, cunning Journal boys and two clergymen, one Catholic and one Protestant, plus a few more, you get a perfect gallery of characters.

 

Race and religion

The case and the characters are certainly interesting in itself, but the big theme in Lyndsay Faye books is the conflicts between race and religion that characterized the country during that time. Black, white, Protestants and Catholics all came together in a very small space with lynching mobs and fights as a result.

 

A successful historical detective story …

… Must get to the settings right in a credible manner. A successful author will draw you into the book in a way that makes you see the clothes, houses and people clearly as it was present time. Then you want to google for more information about the time, places, and events that took place. Lyndsay Faye met all my expectations and more and I can not wait for the next book!

 

At last

I just had to show you this beautiful map that was in the book. There is something special about maps in mysteries. Don´t you think?

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