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.
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.
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:
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