The book opens in 1874, and yet by the third chapter the characters have referred to Jack the Ripper who didn't do his deeds for another fourteen years. When the author makes a mistake as glaring as that early on, I'm distracted with listening for other anachronisms and errors throughout. Which is all the odder as the book staggers along beneath a burden of English legal and trade trivia, with all the entertainment value of a 6th grade text book. I love books with gobs of historical trivia (I'm a great lover of the Aubrey-Maturin series for example) but Mr. Finch seems incapable of delivering his load of information in any manner that could pass as story telling. I wish Mr. Finch had stuck to telling his story, as derivative of other and better detective fiction though it is.
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