Anatomy of Evil

Written by Will Thomas
Review by Jeff Westerhoff

Private enquiry agent Cyrus Barker, along with his assistant Thomas Llewelyn, returns to pursue the notorious serial killer Jack the Ripper in 1888. Asked to become part of Scotland Yard’s Criminal Investigation Department, they not only are faced with finding the elusive killer, but they also have to deal with the political infighting between the various law enforcement agencies operating in London. The Whitechapel Killer, as the murderer is soon called, operates in London’s Jewish sector, creating concerns of a Jewish uprising caused by related newspaper articles detailing the location of the crimes.

The author mixes his fictional characters and actual historical characters with great success. Descriptions of the protagonists’ idiosyncrasies are well defined, while the remaining characters in the story are fully fleshed out, the products of late 19th-century life in London. The author does an excellent job describing the segregated Jewish population and the underground criminal elements that haunt the nights. A by-product of the story is the continued concern for the hapless “unfortunates” or prostitutes, the target of these mass killings.

A haunting mystery novel with an excellent cast of characters. Highly recommended.