Death in Hyde Park
London, 1902, Coronation Day: a milestone for Edward VII, who finally succeeds to the throne. Spectators fill the streets, including an anarchist whose bomb explodes prematurely, killing him instead of the royal couple. The police immediately arrest his coworkers at the “Anarchist Clarion” to stave off public panic. Enter Charles Sheridan, asked by the authorities to investigate, and his wife, Kate, who is offering shelter to Lottie Conway, the editor who escaped the police sweep.
The investigation focuses on the possible innocence of the plaintiffs vs. the determined CID inspector Ashcraft using his own methods to make an arrest stick. The Achilles of the story is rapacious American writer Jack London, who writes about oppression of the poor while enjoying the opulence and freedom his writing income gives him. Although the womanizing author is attracted to Lottie, he has to make good on his Socialist leanings by helping Lottie and her friends seek justice.
A courtroom scene involving the new science of fingerprinting brings the trial to a startling end, with an ensuing twist to make a social statement about the English view of justice in early Edwardian times. Readers who like their novels gothic as well as historical, with a bit of mystery thrown in, should take a peek at this newest Robin Paige novel, which parallels early 1900s issues with those of today.