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Execution dock
Publication Information:
Waterville, Me. : Thorndike Press, 2009.
Physical Description:
553 pages (large print) ; 23 cm.
Series title(s):
General Note:
"Thorndike Press large print basic"--Title page verso.
When a thirteen-year-old boy is found floating in the river Thames with his throat slit, William Monk, superintendent of the Thames River Police, pursues a child pornographer who runs a sex ring using small boys. Monk's wife Hester and several memorable characters from Dark Assassin return in this richly complex story.
Geographic Term:


Call Number
LP Perry Inspector Monk v.16

On Order


Author Notes

Anne Perry was born Juliet Hume on October 28, 1938 in Blackheath, London.

Sent to Christchurch, New Zealand to recover from a childhood case of severe pneumonia, she became very close friends with another girl, Pauline Parker. When Perry's family abandoned her, she had only Parker to turn to, and when the Parkers planned to move from New Zealand, Parker asked that Perry be allowed to join them. When Parker's mother disagreed, Perry and Parker bludgeoned her to death. Perry eventually served five and a half years in an adult prison for the crime.

Once she was freed, she changed her name and moved to America, where she eventually became a writer. Her first Victorian novel, The Cater Street Hangman, was published in 1979. Although the truth of her past came out when the case of Mrs. Parker's murder was made into a movie (Heavenly Creatures), Perry is still a popular author and continues to write. She has written over 50 books and short story collections including the Thomas Pitt series, the William Monk series, and the Daniel Pitt series. Her story, Heroes, won the 2001 Edgar Award for Best Short Story. Her title's Blind Justice and The Angel Court Affair made The New York Times Best Seller List.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 3

Publisher's Weekly Review

British actor David Colacci has made something of a cottage industry in narrating Perry's William Monk mysteries, and he is at home in the imagined underworld of Victorian London, portraying the tony barrister Sir Oliver Rathbone, the timid waif Scuff and the irascible Monk, now trying to earn respect as the head of the Thames River Police. As Monk chases down the slippery killer Jericho Phillips (whom Rathbone, for mysterious reasons, successfully defended in court), he encounters a wall of accusations and insinuations against his well-respected late boss, Commander Durban. Colacci's narration is sure-footed, whether he is tackling the cockney dialect of London's urchins or the clipped tones of the steely upper-crust matron Lady Rathbone. Nearly a hundred tracks per disc make it easy for listeners to find their exact place if they have to stop and start again. A Ballantine hardcover (Reviews, Jan. 12). (Mar.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Kirkus Review

William Monk, now commander of the Thames River Police's Wapping Station, finally closes his late predecessor's last case. Everyone in Queen Victoria's London knows that Jericho Phillips is the scourge of the Thames. Holed up in a well-guarded craft, he keeps a stable of young boys working to provide an unending stream of photographs for gentlemen with a taste for sodomy and pornography. But knowing isn't proving, as Monk finds to his fury after he chases Phillips down and arrests him. None other than Sir Oliver Rathbone, the former suitor of Monk's wife Hester, is engaged by an anonymous client of Arthur Ballinger, Rathbone's father-in-law, to defend Phillips. Exploiting his insider's knowledge of the passionate hatred of Phillips that Monk inherited from Commander Durban, the mentor who died heroically in his last case (A Christmas Grace, 2008), Rathbone is able to persuade a jury that Monk's arrest was based on prejudice rather than facts. His defeat forces Monk and Hester to start all over again, this time with the knowledge that Phillips is fully aware of their intentions and ready to anticipate each move. Perry offers the usual fare, except that this time the ceremonious speeches decrying human-rights abuses are less facile and more directly relevant, and the courtroom scenes are more plausible. Only readers new to Monk's exploits can doubt the outcome. Perry hammers every point home mercilessly, but fans of this well-upholstered series have surely learned long since to deal with repetition. Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Library Journal Review

Oliver Rathbone is asked by his father-in-law to defend pornographer and pimp Jericho Phillips, charged with the vicious murder of a 13-year-old boy. In court, Rathbone cleverly dismantles the circumstantial evidence and then shreds the reputations of Hester and William Monk (Buckingham Palace Gardens). It is left to William Monk, now commander of the Thames River Police, and his capable wife to find a way to bring Phillips to justice. The prolific Perry's latest mystery includes outstanding descriptions of Victorian London, her usual attention to detail, and her keen understanding of human motivations. Her depictions of the subtleties of interpersonal relationships are exceeded only by her remarkable portrayal of Rathbone, who offers insights into how a trial lawyer guides the testimony of witnesses, plots a strategy, and manipulates the emotions of the jury. Highly recommended. [See Prepub Alert, LJ 11/1/08.] (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.