Anne Perry’s spellbinding Victorian mysteries, especially those featuring William Monk, have enthralled listeners for a generation. The Plain Dealer calls Monk “a marvelously dark, brooding creation” - and, true to form, this Perry masterpiece is as deceptively deep and twisty as the Thames.
As commander of the River Police, Monk is accustomed to violent death, but the mutilated female body found on Limehouse Pier one chilly December morning moves him with horror and pity. The victim’s name is Zenia Gadney. Her waterfront neighbors can tell him little - only that the same unknown gentleman had visited her once a month for many years. She must be a prostitute, but - described as quiet and kempt - she doesn’t appear to be a fallen woman.
What sinister secrets could have made poor Zenia worth killing? And why does the government keep interfering in Monk’s investigation?
While the public cries out for blood, Monk, his spirited wife, Hester, and their brilliant barrister friend, Oliver Rathbone, search for answers. From dank waterfront alleys to London’s fabulously wealthy West End, the three trail an ice-blooded murderer toward the unbelievable, possibly unprovable truth - and ultimately engage their adversaries in an electric courtroom duel. But unless they can work a miracle, a monumental evil will go unpunished and an innocent person will hang.
Anne Perry has never worn her literary colors with greater distinction than in A Sunless Sea, a heart-pounding novel of intrigue and suspense in which Monk is driven to make the hardest decision of his life.
©2012 Anne Perry (P)2012 Brilliance Audio, Inc.
It couldn't have been better.
I love this whole series and have listened to every one of the books. Love the story, love the narration.
The narrator is excellent, the plot is a lot of fun. I wish there were more of Hester and Scuff and less court arguing, but that's just me.
Some of the earlier Monk books have more about Monk, Hester, and Scuff working on different parts of the mystery. This time it was mostly Monk, which is fine, but a bit one-sided.
At first I had to get used to Ralph Lister's narration, but after a bit, I adapted and the book flew along. A lot of this story had to do with the trial, and thus, featured Sir Oliver Rathbone, and I like a good courtroom drama. Today there is news on a daily basis of drug overdoses, specifically heroin, and so the opium misuse at front and center of this story is very topical. (And the brief recounting of the opium tragedy that resulted in China is covered as well.) Sunless Sea is a good mix of Monk, Hester, Runcorn (!) and Rathbone, which is a welcome change in the series. As Perry is inclined to do, she can become overly wordy and repetitious, but the overwhelming quality of her prose, and her story line with its twists and turns, win out, making this a 5 star listen. I wish Audible had Book 19..
I've enjoyed the "Monk" series a lot. Every interesting historical novels set in Victorian London involving solid murder mysteries. This one is outstanding. Dealing with medicines and drugs consumed by the public especially heroin & morphine following the Opium Wars in China. The title of the book doesn't do it justice. Narration was perfect.
Filled with many plot twists and elegant phrasing. One of her best in this series
Say something about yourself!
I've listened to many of Anne Perry's books and have liked the ones from this series - until this one. The plot is rehashed with every conversation and every character over and over and over again. It was like she was padding the story to make it longer or something. I couldn't finish it. There was basically no character development and even though the crime to be solved was an interesting one and had potential, it wasn't developed well.
The mystery and the solving of it.
When the murdered woman's identity was revealed.
Monk of course!
The twists and turns of the character development.
Each chapter brought about a new question to be answered.
The protection of the reputation of the dead woman, by the people she lived around. They didn't see her as a street prostitute.
I didn't want to put it down. I wanted to finish it in one sitting.
Anne Perry's writing bring the reader to the period in time when life was fragile.She does include in the story the political climate, the economics of the social system. The legal system that determined guilt and subsequently three weeks later the accused was hanged.The story was written during the time when opium was not regulated and the consequences were immediate.When I read Anne Perry's books, I know Monk's history and way of life. He didn't drop onto the page but emerged fully formed. When she write a Monk story, Monk doesn't change . The story developes around the character.
I always look forward to a William Monk or Thomas Pitt book release.
Both Monk and his wife Hester are realistic characters.
Ralph Lister does an excellent job reading the Perry novels.
Introducing Scuff into the Monk household was a nice addition.
Since this is a series that is character driven, for new readers of this series, I would suggest starting at the beginning of the with "Face of a Stranger".
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