Gallows Court

Gallows Court

by Martin Edwards


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"Superb—a pitch-perfect blend ofGolden Age charmandsinister modern suspense, with a main character to die for.This is the book Edwards was born to write." —Lee Child, #1 New York Times bestselling author

London, 1930

Sooty, sulphurous, and malign: no woman should be out on a night like this. A spate of violent deaths—the details too foul to print—has horrified the capital and the smog-bound streets are deserted. But Rachel Savernake—the enigmatic daughter of a notorious hanging judge—is no ordinary woman. To Scotland Yard's embarrassment, she solved the Chorus Girl Murder, and now she's on the trail of another killer.

Jacob Flint, a young newspaperman temporarily manning The Clarion's crime desk, is looking for the scoop that will make his name. He's certain there is more to the Miss Savernake's amateur sleuthing than meets the eye. He's not the only one.

Flint's pursuit of Rachel Savernake will draw him ever-deeper into a labyrinth of deception and corruption. Murder-by-murder, he'll be swept ever-closer to its dark heart—an ancient place of execution. Twisted family relationships add to a trust-no-one narrative positively reeking with atmosphere.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781492699286
Publisher: Sourcebooks
Publication date: 09/17/2019
Pages: 368
Sales rank: 170,505
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.25(h) x 2.00(d)

About the Author

Martin Edwards is an award-winning crime writer whose most recent novel, set in 1930, is Gallows Court. His seventh and most recent Lake District Mystery is The Dungeon House. Earlier books in the series are The Coffin Trail (short-listed for the Theakston's prize for best British crime novel of 2006), The Cipher Garden, The Arsenic Labyrinth (short-listed for the Lakeland Book of the Year award in 2008), The Serpent Pool, and The Hanging Wood.

Martin is a well-known crime fiction critic, and series consultant to the British Library's Crime Classics. His ground-breaking study of the genre between the wars, The Golden Age of Murder, was warmly reviewed around the world, and won the Edgar, Agatha, H.R.F. Keating and Macavity awards. His The Story of Classic Crime in 100 Books has been nominated for five awards.

A well-known commentator on crime fiction, he has edited 37 anthologies and published diverse non-fiction books, including a study of homicide investigation, Urge to Kill. An expert on crime fiction history, he is archivist of both the Crime Writers' Association and the Detection Club. He was elected eighth President of the Detection Club in 2015, is current Chair of the CWA, and posts regularly to his blog, 'Do You Write Under Your Own Name?'

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Gallows Court 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Jantine 6 months ago
This is a great piece of historical crime fiction, with a fast pace. The characters are so interesting! Even when they are aloof or not that likeable, Edwards made them in such a way that I as a reader liked them anyway somehow. The whole mystery and structure took some nice turns.
diane92345 7 months ago
Gallows Court is an atmospheric homage to British golden age mysteries. Cub crime reporter Jacob Flint is trying to get an interview with the rich and enigmatic Rachel, who has recently solved the chorus girl murder and is working on a new serial killer case. Rachel is the daughter of a hanging judge. She has a mysterious Irish past involving Juliet. Juliet’s life on the island with her cousin Rachel, while the judge slowly descends into madness, is detailed in her diary entries from years earlier. Juliet is convinced her parents have been murdered by one or both of them. First of all, I love reading the author’s scholarly introductions to, and books about, the British golden age of mysteries. I haven’t read any of his modern mysteries. I respect that Gallows Court is his take on a golden age mystery. However, the book seemed overlong and kind of lost my interest somewhere in the middle. I stuck with it and the conclusion was good. If you don’t mind taking your time reading, this book will reward you with some surprising twists and turns. It feels genuinely like it was written in the 1930s. 3.5 stars rounded up to 4 stars! Thanks to Poisoned Pen Press and NetGalley for a copy in exchange for my honest review.
leylaj 7 months ago
A very tight mystery, nothing is what it seems and the ending is very surprising. A good entertaining read.
Reader4102 7 months ago
Jacob Flint is new to the world of sensational journalism and in London. He is determined to make his journalistic name with a splash. When his mentor at the newspaper is run down by a car, Jacob steps into his shoes. The first person he wants to talk to is Rachel Savernake, very wealthy and beautiful, she is an enigma to everyone, especially Jacob. She meets with him, but warns him off anything to do with herself. He doesn’t listen. Then, he receives a unsigned note he is convinced is from Rachel telling him to go to a certain address. Once there, Flint learns that a banker who caters to the elite of London has shot and killed himself leaving behind a note confessing to being responsible for gruesome murder of a young woman and chopping off her head. Clues are found in the banker’s home that prove his signed confession is true. Jacob’s got his scoop. After his dying mentor gives him two words: “Gallows Court,” he continues to pursue Rachel Savernake and finds himself on dangerous ground. This is a fast-paced complex mystery set in 1930 London. The author is a skilled writer who takes his readers onto the foggy, dirty streets of London and into the depths of corruption, depravity, and horror among a group of powerful men. His characters are well-drawn, and as the reader gets to know them, even likable. The one thing that was off-putting is Edwards’ penchant for over-using clichés – eventually, either he stops using them or the reader is so immersed in the story that she no longer notices they’re there. If you like well-written historical mysteries and love them with non-traditional characters, then you need to read this book. It needs to go to the top of your to-be-read list. My thanks to Poisoned Pen Press and Edelweiss for a free eARC.