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Publisher's Summary

The notorious opium-eater returns in the sensational conclusion to David Morrell's acclaimed Victorian mystery trilogy.

Like David Morrell's previous De Quincey novels, Ruler of the Night blends fact and fiction to an exceptional degree, this time focusing on a real-life Victorian murder so startling that it changed the culture - in this case the first murder on an English train. The brutality of the crime stoked the fears of a generation who believed that the newly invented railway would "annihilate time and space".

In Ruler of the Night, listeners feel they're actually on the harrowing fogbound streets of 1855 London as the brilliant opium-eater Thomas De Quincey and his irrepressible daughter, Emily, confront their most ruthless adversary. The stakes couldn't be greater: both the heart of Victorian society and De Quincey's tormented soul.

The fast-paced narrative matches the speed with which the railway changed Victorian life. It brings back Scotland Yard detectives Ryan and Becker, along with Lord Palmerston, Queen Victoria, and Prince Albert, and introduces a host of new characters from this fascinating era. Master storyteller David Morrell transports listeners back in time, away from the modern world and into the dangerous shadows of the past.

©2016 David Morrell (P)2016 Hachette Audio

Critic Reviews

"Spectacular.... The narrative builds to a powerful but bittersweet ending." ( Publishers Weekly)
"Taut, atmospheric.... Morrell brings the period to vivid life with solid research and fascinating Victorian details.... Grade: A-" (Michelle Ross, Cleveland Plain Dealer)
"Morrell's deft hand with thriller plotting provides copious chills and procedural satisfaction, but it is his mastery of character, shrewd exploitation of Victorian details and attitudes, and tonal sophistication that seduce and delight.... It's a cracking yarn, irresistible as an emergency bottle of laudanum secreted in a shabby coat pocket. " ( Kirkus Reviews)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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Not nearly as enjoyable as the first two

Would you try another book from David Morrell and/or Neil Dickson?

Yes, as I very much enjoyed the first two books in this series. But for me, this one lacked the gripping suspense that kept me up all night listening to the previous works--especially the first book in the series, which so cleverly incorporates De Quincey's actual essay. The second was also very well done. By the time I got to the end of this one, however, I just didn't care. Emily went from being a spunky, unconventional yet believable Victorian heroine to a character that I just didn't buy. And I'm not sure why the author has to tell us, over and over and over again, how short De Quincey is. The love triangle aspect has long lost its initial charm. The plot is confusing and contrived, and the ending gives you the impression that the author just wanted to be finished with the book--which was, frankly, the way I felt by the last ten chapters or so. I was bored and wanted nothing more than for it to be over.

Would you be willing to try another book from David Morrell? Why or why not?

Yes; see above. He draws a wonderfully detailed picture of Victorian London, and for history buffs, that alone makes it worth the read. If he writes another in this series, however, I'll give it a miss.

What about Neil Dickson’s performance did you like?

Well-voiced; nothing mispronounced. Nothing particularly brilliant in the performance. It was adequate.

Could you see Ruler of the Night being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

This is a stupid question and I dislike the survey format. Please give your readers the option to write their own review from the website, as one can in the app.

Any additional comments?

Again, if you love historical mysteries, the first one in the series--Murder as a Fine Art--is the one to pick. This one? Meh.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Ruler of the Night

I've enjoyed all the books in this trilogy. This last book winds things up well. The story is maybe not as tight as the other two, but it's still very good. The performer is different, but after a bit I didn't notice. He does a very good job. I definitely recommend this.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

history with mystery

narrator was spot on, loved everything about it, can't wait for the next book, hope it will be soon

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Good Addition to the Series

I love the Thomas & Emily De Quincey series. The first two books were stand-out greats. Ruler of the Night is a great story but it lacked something the previous two had. I think it may have been the new narrator who I didn't like nearly as much as Mathew Wolf. Overall it's still worth a listen.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Loved it--Highly recommended.

Very good story, plot, performance, and execution. Well done. I would be disappointed if this were the last in this series.

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Best of the 3

This novel was interesting and it had many twists and turns. Some of them were predictable but other parts were unexceptional and enjoyable. I think the narrator was exceptional in capturing all the different voices and nuances. Seems that this is the best novel out of the three but I would encourage it in an audible book for all three. Listening Makes the novel much more enjoyable.

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Soo Good! The best story yet.

I have thoroughly enjoyed this series. It is well written; the characters are engaging and the detail to Victorian London in the 1800s history is authentic. The relationship is in the main characters continues to be realistic and continues to progress. Peers views De Quincey is a scourged-on society because of his opium addiction. De Quincey who is aware of his faults, cannot be humiliated or devalued because of his addiction. Aristocrats view his confident and quite demeanor as haughtiness. It infuriates them while making them feel small.

The trilogy illustrates the disparity between those with money and the working class. It throws a spot light on the values and moral of the Victorian London. Through De Quincey’s investigating skills, he humbled demonstrated to Peers:
1. Intelligence is not equated with money.
2. Aristocrats are capable of the same sins as everyone else.
3. Clothing does not make a person above evil.

This finial story continues to illustrate many of the practices and deductive reasoning that are basic in crime investigating. This final crime revolves around the first passenger train in the 1800s and more of Quincey’s past is revealed. The action of the chase, suspense, and mystery are just as riveting as the first two books.

Emily went from being a spunky, unconventional to a very confident woman who is valued for her accomplishments. She is aware with her bloomer pants and medical knowledge many Peers view her with disdain. Her actions are emboldened by their prejudices. That confidence is demonstrated more in this installment.

Scotland Yard detectives Ryan and Becker have grown in confidence and skill in their investigating skills. They work together as a team instead of mentor and mentee. There is more of an exchange of knowledge instead Socratic method of education. There is a Starsky and Hutch exchange (hey man don’t beat the shit out of him. You will be the one in jail.) where one officer tamper the actions of his partner.

In the final installment, we find the Queen and many of the Peers hold De Quincey in high esteem. For unconventional Emily, who is devoted to her father and her modern views, there is love. De Quincey learns, you can never escape your past. After he finds the answers to his past, he and Emily leaves London. I will miss future stories about the opium eater.

I found this to be the best book. So much introductory information that is required to establish the story has already been accomplished in the previous stories.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

I enjoyed the story a lot. Very good narration.

Any additional comments?

I enjoyed the story a lot. Kept me interested from the beginning. Like David Morrell's previous De Quincey novels, Ruler of the Night blends fact and fiction to an exceptional degree, this time focusing on a real-life Victorian murder so startling that it changed the culture - in this case the first murder on an English train. The brutality of the crime stoked the fears of a generation who believed that the newly invented railway would "annihilate time and space". In Ruler of the Night, listeners feel they're actually on the harrowing fogbound streets of 1855 London as the brilliant opium-eater Thomas De Quincey and his irrepressible daughter, Emily, confront their most ruthless adversary. The stakes couldn't be greater: both the heart of Victorian society and De Quincey's tormented soul.
The fast-paced narrative matches the speed with which the railway changed Victorian life. It brings back Scotland Yard detectives Ryan and Becker, along with Lord Palmerston, Queen Victoria, and Prince Albert, and introduces a host of new characters from this fascinating era. Master storyteller David Morrell transports listeners back in time, away from the modern world and into the dangerous shadows of the past.

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Horrible , Horrible

Extremely boring, from the very beginning. Narration dull and dreary. Save your time and $$$$$$ really crappy story line.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful