The Angel Makers

Written by Tessa Harris

1888. The Ripper is still out there, beyond the fog. The women of London are fearful and wary of being alone on the streets, something that few respectable women would think to do, but the unfortunate poor have little choice. Constance Piper is a flower seller with an uncanny ability to see the unseen, as-yet-to-happen events of her day. She is watched over by the spirit of her late teacher and friend, Emily Tindall, who guides Constance into her second foray as an investigator.

In the underbelly of Victorian London options for unmarried women, especially unwed mothers-to-be, are few. Many find themselves abandoned, starving, and willing to do almost anything for their next meal, or a sheltered place to sleep. Mother Delaney’s house on Poplar Street offers a place to give birth and a place to house the babies until an appropriate family is found for them. For women in unfortunate circumstances, it is an answer to a prayer. Or perhaps not. Jack is not the only one with blood on his hands.

This novel is psychologically disturbing, and the subject is immensely sad, and yet the author paints the words/pictures with the skill of a master. The use of two very different protagonists is inspired, and her remarkable cast of characters kept me turning pages until the end. I look forward to the next book in the series.