Anatomy of Murder

Written by Imogen Robertson
Review by Mike Ashworth

London 1781. Gentlewoman Harriet Westerman and reclusive anatomist Gabriel Crowther have gained a surprising reputation in the field of criminal investigation. When a body is dragged out of the filthy waters of the Thames they are invited by a member of the government to investigate. Their investigations take them into the glamorous world of opera where the new celebrity castrato singer, Manzerotti, has arrived in the capital to perform. The unlikely duo find themselves dragged into the murky and dangerous world of espionage as the nations’ military secrets are being revealed to the French. Murder stalks the streets, not only among the glamour of the operatic world, but also in the dark, poverty stricken world of London’s underclass, and their search for the truth provides a dangerous link between the two.

This is the second book featuring this unlikely pairing of the strong minded gentlewoman and the standoffish, unforthcoming anatomist. That the characters work so well is testimony to the strength and quality of the writing. The plot moves along briskly, while the characters are well drawn and convincing. Less a crime novel, more a thriller, the story has pace, vivid descriptions and strong characters. I look forward to the next instalment of what I am sure will be a long and fruitful series. Recommended.