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The Dublin Railway Murder by Thomas Morris

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The Dublin Railway Murder by Thomas Morris
UK Publication: November 2021
Reviewed by: Book Worm
Rating: [★★★★]

This ARC was provided by Random House UK (via NetGalley) in exchange for an honest review.

One word review – Fascinating

Synopsis from Goodreads: An astonishing real-life locked-room murder mystery set in Victorian Dublin, packed with gripping, perplexing twists. This meticulously researched true-crime tale reads like a quintessential Victorian thriller and is perfect for fans of The Suspicions of Mr Whicher.

One morning in November 1856 George Little, the chief cashier of the Broadstone railway terminus in Dublin, was found dead, lying in a pool of blood beneath his desk. His head had been almost severed; a knife lay nearby, but strangely the office door was locked, apparently from the inside. This was a deed of almost unheard-of brutality for the peaceful Irish capital: while violent crime was commonplace in Victorian London, the courts of Dublin had not convicted a single murderer in more than thirty years.

From the first day of the police investigation it was apparent that this was no ordinary case. Detectives struggled to understand how the killer could have entered and then escaped from a locked room, and why thousands of pounds in gold and silver had been left untouched at the scene of the crime. Three of Scotland Yard’s most celebrated sleuths were summoned to assist the enquiry, but all returned to London baffled. It was left to Superintendent Augustus Guy, the head of Ireland’s first detective force, to unravel the mystery.

Five suspects were arrested and released, with every step of the salacious case followed by the press, clamouring for answers. Under intense public scrutiny, Superintendent Guy found himself blocked at almost every turn. But then a local woman came forward, claiming to know the murderer….

My Thoughts: Wow – this book is so detailed it almost feels like you are right there at the scene of the crime.

As this is a true crime story I will not saying anything about the actual case for those who like me are unfamiliar with the details. What I will say is that this provides a fascinating insight into the early days of policing and criminology. Especially fascinating was the idea of what could and couldn’t be used as evidence and how this affected the ultimate outcome of the trial.

Who would like this? Anyone who likes true crime and anyone with an interest in historical policing.

We want to hear from you! Have you read this book? What did you think? 

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