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Cover image for Buckingham Palace gardens : a novel
Format:
Title:
Buckingham Palace gardens : a novel
Author:
ISBN:
9780345469311

9780345523693

9780345469328
Edition:
1st ed.
Publication Information:
New York : Ballantine Books, ©2008.
Physical Description:
312 pages ; 24 cm.
Number in series:
25.
Contents:
Introduction; 1. Before the Revolution; 2. The New Cinemas; 3. Movements; 4. Authors; 5. End of an Era; Conclusion; Filmography; Bibliography; Index.
Summary:
Pitt investigates the murder of a maid at Buckingham Palace, narrowing his group of suspects down to several house guests who are meeting with the Prince of Wales to discuss the funding of a huge project: the Cape to Cairo railway. While the Prince might overlook the unfortunate loss of a maid, the Queen, who is due back soon, will likely veto any Royal support in the scheme if she finds out.
Holds:

Available:*

Library
Call Number
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Perry Thomas and Charlotte Pitt v.25
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MYSTERY - PERRY
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PERRY, A.
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Perry
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FIC (M) PERRY 2008
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PERRY
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MYSTERY PERRY
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MYSTERY Perry, A.
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FIC PERRY
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MYSTERY Perry, A.
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MYS PERRY
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Perry
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On Order

Summary

Summary

From New York Times-bestselling author Anne Perry comes the first Thomas Pitt novel since Long Spoon Lane and features an inside view of Buckingham Palace in the aftermath of a bloody murder. Ballantine Books


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 4

Publisher's Weekly Review

The detecting and diplomatic skills of Thomas Pitt, now assigned to the Special Branch, are tested as never before in bestseller Perry's solid 25th novel to feature the Victorian sleuth (after 2005's Long Spoon Lane). In 1893, the discovery of a prostitute's mutilated corpse in a Buckingham Palace cupboard after a stag party presided over by the prince of Wales could spell political disaster for the monarchy. Pitt soon eliminates the members of the sizable household staff as suspects, narrowing his focus to the prince himself and his close friends, who, it turns out, have been planning a major construction project in Africa-a railway that would run from South Africa to Egypt. Though the sensitive nature of Pitt's assignment precludes any active involvement by Charlotte, his wife and partner in earlier cases, he's able to place her maid, Gracie Phipps, on the palace staff to assist him. Perry does a nice job with some plot twists, even if most readers will quickly discount the heir to the throne of England as a viable suspect. (Mar.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved


Booklist Review

The venerable Queen Victoria remains on the British throne. Her son, the middlle-aged Prince of Wales, awaits the time to come for his occupancy of the throne. In the meantime, he fills his days and nights with wine, women, and song. One such evening explodes when, the next morning, in a linen closet in Buckingham Palace (the queen, fortunately, not in residence at the time) is discovered the bloody body of a prostitute who had been part of the previous evening's entertainment, when the Prince of Wales hosted a gathering of businessmen to discuss a certain engineering project in which he was interested. Called in to quickly and discreetly get to the bottom of the murder is Inspector Pitt (a recurring Perry character), whose strategy includes installing the maid from his own household as an undercover employee in the palace. In a mystery novel, or any novel, with such a setting, it would have been easy for the author to trip over titles and protocol, but Perry has done her homework and does not stumble.--Hooper, Brad Copyright 2008 Booklist


New York Review of Books Review

BUCKINGHAM PALACE GARDENS (Ballantine, $26) is Anne Perry's 25th novel featuring her 19thcentury police inspector, Thomas Pitt. But unlike so many detective series gliding on cruise control, this mature work provides a fine introduction to Perry's alluring world of Victorian crime and intrigue. Ever the master of her milieu, she delivers sumptuous descriptions of life among the gentry when England still basked in its imperial glory. And in an intricate plot about a murder at the palace while the Prince and Princess of Wales are in residence, she also marshals the series's major themes: the way crime reverberates throughout the social classes; the precarious status of women of every rank; and the need for honorable heroes to preserve and protect the Empire, sometimes from itself. The glittering centerpiece of Pitt's latest adventure is a formal dinner party attended by the royal couple and their guests, including four entrepreneurs intent on building a railway from Cape Town to Cairo. By the time Perry is finished with the menu, the wives' gowns and the barbed conversations, we've been given subtle insights into every character. The one we care about most is Elsa Dunkeid, the abused but loyal spouse of the most ruthless of the master builders who are seeking the prince's support. Elsa has an independent mind, but because she's no rebel and keeps her intelligence to herself, her views on palace politics seem more authentic than those of the extraordinary protofeminists who tend to dominate Perry's novels. To make her point that the most insignificant life matters, even in the most classbound society, Perry employs an irresistibly appealing "Upstairs, Downstairs" perspective. While the prince and his guests try to explain to Inspector Pitt how the naked body of a prostitute got into a linen closet and bled all over Queen Victoria's own bedclothes, Pitt's clever housemaid, Gracie Phipps, infiltrates the servants' hall, alert to clues that her social superiors might miss. But it isn't young Gracie who is most changed by all this exposure to the powerful elite. It's the idealistic Pitt: "He had still imagined in them a love of the same values as the best of their subjects." Disillusioned by royal reality, he's wiser now, but still committed to restoring order to his imperfect world. The emotional stakes must be high, excruciatingly so, for a suspense novel to maintain its tension, a point obviously understood by David Levien when he wrote CITY OF THE SUN (Doubleday, $24.95). While it deals with the practical mechanics of how a private detective tracks down a boy who has been missing for more than a year, this relentless novel is really about how parents suffer the loss of a child. As such, the story conveys a piercing sense of honesty, even when the investigation itself seems implausibly free of complications. Twelveyearold Jamie Gabriel was snatched off his bike while delivering newspapers in suburban Indianapolis. But after more than a year the trail is "iceage cold," and besides, the police always figured him for a runaway. That leaves his parents, Carol and Paul Gabriel, frozen in a state of grief that begins to thaw only when they hire a former cop, Frank Behr, who lost his own young son in a tragic accident. Scenes are brief and sharp, and there are no stalls in the easy flow of the investigation, which ends with Frank and Paul on a grim road trip to Mexico that also proceeds with remarkably few hitches. But despite all the holes in the plot, the truth of the characters and the intensity of their pain is as unbearably real as it gets. Certain books come to mind whenever that little voice whispers in your ear, "Oh, lighten up!" The mysteries of manners that M. C. Beaton sets in the Cotswolds and laces with the acerbic wit of her village sleuth, Agatha Raisin, are always good for a nasty laugh. Somewhat sweeter, but also restorative, are the "Morgue Mama" whodunits of C. R. Corwin, whose smalltown snoop, the longtime librarian at a Midwestern newspaper, has yet to miss a dirty trick. Louise Penny's series about the eccentric residents of a postcardperfect town in Canada can also be pretty funny. Two relatively new series are putting twists on this impulse to laugh in the face of death. "The Spellman Files" was Lisa Lutz's quirky introduction to Isabel (Izzy) Spellman, dragooned into the family firm by parents who run investigations from their San Francisco home. Izzy returns in CURSE OF THE SPELLMANS (Simon & Schuster, $25) with another breathless tale of comic woe, related through intelligence reports ("Subject Is Observed Digging a Hole"), tape transcripts ("The Stone and Spellman Show Episode 48") and annotated accounts of everything from Izzy's exboyfriends to her arrest history. It's nice to hear such an original voice. AVALANCHE (Simon & Schuster, paper, $14) is Patrick F. McManus's second shaggy dog tale (after "The Blight Way") about Bo Tully, sheriff of Blight County, Idaho, and a good man to have around if you're hunting elk. Bo's current case, tracking down the missing owner of a fancy ski resort, gets tricky when an avalanche traps him inside the resort's lodge with his crazyoldcoot father, an assortment of rowdy guests and maybe a murderer. McManus is a columnist for Outdoor Life and Field & Stream, so it's not surprising to find him setting a pretty nature scene. But his idiosyncratic characters and their lunatic ways are what make this folksy whodunit such fun to curl up with. In Anne Perry's latest Victorian crime novel, a murdered prostitute is found in a linen closet at Buckingham Palace.


Library Journal Review

Thomas Pitt must be discreet as he investigates murder at an out-of-control party; the host was the Prince of Wales. With a ten-city tour by request. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.