Thursday, November 30, 2017

Throw Back Thursday: Favorites from My Past Reading

Today's Throw-Back Thursday selection is from author Matthew Pearl.  I've been a fan of this author since his debut novel, The Dante Club, published in 2003.  He has been referred to as a master of the popular literary historical thriller.  I would add mystery onto that, as in thriller/mystery.  His other fiction books include The Poe Shadow, The Last Dickens, The Technologists, and The Last Bookaneer.  He has also written some non-fiction books, and lots of short non-fiction and short fiction.  His next novel will be out the summer of 2018 and is entitled The Dante Chamber, a sequel or connected story to his first novel, The Dante Club.  Today I'm featuring Pearl's The Last Dickens.  So, here's look back at a favorite book of mine some readers might have missed.

Jacket Description:
Boston, 1870. When news of Charles Dickens’s untimely death reaches the office of his struggling American publisher, Fields & Osgood, partner James Osgood sends his trusted clerk Daniel Sand to await the arrival of Dickens’s unfinished novel. But when Daniel’s body is discovered by the docks and the manuscript is nowhere to be found, Osgood must embark on a transatlantic quest to unearth the novel that he hopes will save his venerable business and reveal Daniel’s killer.

Danger and intrigue abound on the journey to England, for which Osgood has chosen Rebecca Sand, Daniel’s older sister, to assist him. As they attempt to uncover Dickens’s final mystery, Osgood and Rebecca find themselves racing the clock through a dangerous web of literary lions and drug dealers, sadistic thugs and blue bloods, and competing members of Dickens’s inner circle. They soon realize that understanding Dickens’s lost ending is a matter of life and death, and the hidden key to stopping a murderous mastermind.

Reading Room Short Review:
The Last Dickens is a mystery that revolves around the last half of Charles Dickens' last book, The Mystery of Edward Drood. Dickens died of a stroke at age 58 having only submitted the first half of his last book for serial publication. Matthew Pearl creates a mystery of his own, with good vs. evil forces in pursuit of the missing last half of Edwin Drood. The facts about and insights into Dickens as an author and a person are interspersed into Pearl's novel with a marvelous even handedness. The world of publishing in the late 1800's, especially in America, adds to the intrigue and interest of this fascinating novel. The Last Dickens may well be Matthew Pearl's best to date of his literary fiction offerings


  1. Thanks so much Kathy! Really appreciate your kind words for The Last Dickens and spreading the word!

    1. Matthew, it's a pleasure to feature you on my blog. Thank you for taking the time to comment. It's something that means a lot to bloggers. I do want to apologize for my short review of The Last Dickens. I was not doing the lengthier reviews I do these days, and so I know I didn't do it justice. I'd love to do a short interview with you when your new book comes out, if you can find the time. I would send you the questions. Again, I'm so happy that you stopped by the blog.