Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Pg. 99: "A Journeyman to Grief"

The current feature at the Page 99 Test: Maureen Jennings's A Journeyman to Grief.

About the book, from the author's website:

In 1858, a young woman on her honeymoon is forcibly abducted accross the Canadian border into United States and is sold into slavery. Thirty-eight years later, Detective Murdoch's latest case is a murder that it will take all of his resourcefulness to solve. The owner of one of Toronto's livery stables has been found dead. He has been horsewhipped and left hanging from his wrists in his tack room, and his wife claims that a considerable sum of money has been stolen. Then a second man is also murdered, his body strangely tied as if he were a rebellious slave. Murdoch has to find out whether Toronto's small "coloured" community has a vicious murderer in its midst – an investigation that puts his own life in danger.
Among the praise for the novel:

“When it comes to evoking a bygone era of dim gas lighting, ill-heated homes, the shenanigans of the criminal underclass and the corrupt hypocrisy of our ‘betters,’ Jennings has [Anne] Perry beat hands down.”
Calgary Herald

Jennings brings to life a violent but vital society of astonishing contradictions.”
New York Times Book Review

Jennings has always had a fine eye for telling details and good characters.”
Globe and Mail

A Journeyman to Grief is the seventh Detective Murdoch novel: others include Except the Dying, shortlisted for both the Anthony and the Arthur Ellis Best First Novel Awards, Under the Dragon’s Tale, Poor Tom Is Cold, Let Loose the Dogs, shortlisted for the Anthony Best Historical Mystery Award, and Night’s Child, shortlisted for the Arthur Ellis Award, the Bruce Alexander Historical Mystery Award, the Barry Award, and the Macavity Historical Mystery Award, and Vices of My Blood.

Three of Jennings’s novels have been made into TV movies under the title Murder 19C: The Murdoch Mysteries. Bravo/CHUM is currently developing a series based on the character of Detective William Murdoch for broadcast in 2007.

Visit Maureen Jennings's website.

The Page 99 Test: A Journeyman to Grief.

--Marshal Zeringue