“Wonderful… the whodunit plot takes in celebrity chefs, extraordinary cuisine, international diplomacy and and Victorian political shenanigans… a sumptuous treat.”
Shortlisted for Shortlisted for the CWA Historical Dagger
Fig Tree · 400 pp · 2016
London, 1842. A mysterious and horrible death at the Reform, London's newest and grandest gentleman's club, is hushed up. Amateur private inquiry agent Captain William Avery is persuaded to investigate, and soon discovers a web of rivalries and hatreds, both personal and political, simmering behind the club's handsome façade—and in particular surrounding its resident genius, Alexis Soyer, 'the Napoleon of food', a chef whose culinary brilliance is matched only by his talent for self-publicity.
But Avery is distracted, for where is his mentor and partner-in-crime Jeremiah Blake? And what if this first death is only a dress rehearsal for something far more sinister and dangerous?
The keynote to this third Blake & Avery outing is enjoyment – in the sharp, clever plot, the telling detail and the author’s uncanny ability to summon up the inner sanctum of the Victorian male club, a debtor’s prison or Soyer’s extraordinary dishes.
Wonderful… the whodunit plot takes in celebrity chefs, extraordinary cuisine, international diplomacy and and Victorian political shenanigans… a sumptuous treat.