Anne Perry, that incomparable novelist of life in Victorian England, has once again surpassed herself with this 21st installment of her New York Times best-selling William Monk series. In Corridors of the Night, nurse Hester Monk and her husband, William, commander of the Thames River Police, do desperate battle with two obsessed scientists who, in the name of healing, have turned to homicide. The monomaniacal Rand brothers - Magnus, a cunning doctor, and Hamilton, a genius chemist - are utterly ruthless in their pursuit of a cure for the fatal "white-blood disease". In London's Royal Naval Hospital annex, Hester is tending one of the brothers' dying patients - wealthy Bryson Radnor - when she stumbles upon three weak, terrified young children and learns, to her horror, that they've been secretly purchased and imprisoned by the Rands for experimental purposes. But the Rand brothers are too close to a miracle cure to allow their experiments to be exposed. Before Hester can reveal the truth, she, too, becomes a prisoner. As Monk and his faithful friends - distinguished lawyer Oliver Rathbone and reformed brothel keeper Squeaky Robinson among them - scour London's grimy streets and the beautiful English countryside searching for her, Hester's time, as well as the children's, is quickly draining away. Taut with intrigue and laced with white-knuckled terror, Corridors of the Night is Anne Perry at her magnificent, unforgettable best.
©2015 Anne Perry (P)2015 Recorded Books
I am an avid eclectic reader.
This is book 21 of the Monk series. The books are historical fiction based in the 1850’s London. This book features my favorite character Hester. Hester is a nurse who was one of Nightingales’ team of nurses in the Crimean War. In this story Hester is filling in for a friend on the night shift at the Greenwich Hospital. Hester discovers research is being conducted on indigent men, women and children without their knowledge. If you have read other books in this series you know that Hester’s ethics are of the highest caliber. She sets out to correct the situation and suddenly disappears. Monk and all their friends are hunting for Hester.
Perry again exposes the rotten underbelly of 19th Century London, with its huge disparity between the wealthy elite and the impoverished lower working classes. (Sound familiar.) Perry is a fantastic writer of historical fiction, her characters are alive, complex; their personalities are real and the speech reflects their status and upbringing in the Victorian era. Perry provides a nuance and strong layer of moral questions which elevate the story. The story also demonstrates how far the criminal justice system has advanced with crime scene investigation and forensics. I was particularly interested in the status of nursing and medicine Perry revealed in the story; also found the information on blood transfusions fascinating. Perry not only tells a good story but educates the reader about the history of the Victorian era. David Colacci does a good job narrating the story; he is one of my favorite narrators.
love audio books - Anglophile
I like both. I usually consult the Kindle version for the spelling of names and places.
I love the ongoing involvement of secondary characters from previous books in addition to Hester and Monk: Rathbone, Scuff, Work, Squeaky, Sgt Orme). This doesn't really answer the question, but that would give away surprises in the plot.
I very much enjoy all the books that he has read in the Monk series. I know when I see his name as the reader that the story is in good hands. Fortunately, this series has had several top notch readers.
I can't say without giving away several plot twists. But the plot and character development are extremely well done, and there are times when I yell out loud when something unexpected happens.
This is one of my very favorite series. It's one of the few audio series that I've listened to several times. I look forward to each new release and download it as soon as it's available. I'll have to read her WWI series and resume listening to the Charlotte & Thomas Pitt series while I'm waiting for the next Monk book. Thanks, Audible, for making these Anne Perry series available!
Perry has written a melodramatic narrative that is not up to her usual standard. I began to notice excessive redundancy in the last Perry book I read (Death on Blackheath) and it is even worse in Corridors of the Night. The same information is presented and the same phrases are used over and over again within a few pages of each other. The book needs editing to remove what is essentially filler material.
There is interesting background information about treating leukemia in the 19th century and the callous way in which children were treated.
I will not buy another book narrated by David Collacci. His speech pattern emphasizes words almost randomly and it's very distracting. And annoying. And unnatural. A good narrator fades into the story and you don't even notice the voice or mannerisms. Not so in this book.
I would welcome another Thomas Monk book with better narrative flow and a different narrator.
This is basically a book about the early attempts at blood transfusion. It centers around a chemists who is attempting to save a wealthy patient who has white cell disease (I presume it was Leukemia). The doctor is using the blood of children whom he purchased from their parents.
Hester is filling in for a sick friend doing night duty at the hospital. She finds the children, being used to draw blood, who are near death due to dehydration. She save them by giving them water and beef tea. When she goes looking for the doctor who has caused this, she is kidnapped and taken with the children to a lonely farm
At the farm she not only nurses the patient but also makes sure that the children kidnapped with her are kept alive and well fed. Monk and other go looking for her and release her from her imprisonment along with the children. They explore the farm and find graves of children and adults in the orchard.
The daughter of the patient is there helping with the cleaning and cooking.
There is a trial of the doctor for kidnapping which they lose when the sick patient walks in announcing that he is cured. Trial end in chaos and doctor is hailed as a miracle worker. The the daughter is found murdered, the doctor is accused and found guilty of the murder and hung. The sick patient has a relapse and goes to the hospital for treatment and dies. I will let you enjoy finding out how he dies.
Basically this is one of the least interesting books Anne Perry has ever written. It is not really a mystery - the only thing approaching a mystery is the murder of a daughter and that is barely mentioned. The emphasis is more about the efforts to develop blood transfusion and what little mystery there is, has been pasted on top of medical story.
It was not my cup of tea. I have always enjoyed Monk less than Pitt and more or less skimmed thru the books. There was no murder, nothing to solve - hardly what I would call a mystery.
Another good series that I will continue to listen to for now. The plots are becoming very predictable but I still like the characters.
quite slow moving, for me, & a whole lot of detail that became tedious. I didn't finish it. But I would like to put in a plug for Anne Perry's World War 1 series of five books. It is incomparable.
Either I have gotten used to Anne Perry's storytelling, or she has slacked off a little in this one. Or possibly it's the way David Colacci reads it. This was an involving tale of a medical and criminal mystery, but there were elements of it that were not entirely satisfying. Even so, it's far more entertaining than a lot of what gets published and recorded.
I will say this – Colacci's English accent is distracting, far more so than if he had just read it without trying. He's a wonderful narrator – I enjoy him in other audiobooks - but for some reason, for these, he has developed a speech pattern that features an odd emphasis and rhythm, which I think he thinks makes him sound grave and British. It doesn't. It just sounds sort of, I don't know, pompous?
I am a little puzzled why the gig wasn't given to an actual Brit. Even so, an involving mystery, with hints at future developments, which seems to be the norm for series writers these days.
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