Sunday, April 19, 2009

Execution Dock by Anne Perry

I have been very anxious for this book to come out and I wasn't disappointed by it! Yea, a new Anne Perry to read!

I started reading her books last summer and was hooked immediately. She writes very well, descriptively without being repetitive, and full of detail about the Victorian Era. Her characters are full and richly developed and her stories are interesting. She writes about some very adult subjects such as prostitution and incest but does it in a way that is not voyeuristic or obscene. She has two main series: Inspector Pitt and William Monk. The Pitt series is set about 25 years later than the Monk series which begins in the 1850's. Both series take place in London. Her website is if you are interested.

Execution Dock is the 16th book in the Monk series. Monk is a policeman who, at the beginning of the series, has been in a horrific accident and has lost his memory. He gradually begins to figure out the puzzle of his life. By the 16th book, he still has not regained his memory. The book begins with a chase, capture, and trial of Jericho Phillips who is a known child pornographer. Unfortunately, Monk didn't have as watertight a case as he needed to and Phillips was surprisingly represented by Sir Oliver Rathbone whose skills as a lawyer and knowledge of Monk's weaknesses combined to defeat the prosecution. Monk then has to go back to find something else with which to charge Phillips in order to get him off the streets and along the way he learns things about his predecessor, Durban, that are disturbing. Hester and Scuff are heavily involved in the investigation as are others from the Portpool clinic. Rathbone has to examine his motives for taking the case and we find that the upper classes are part of the problem. It's one of my favorites of Perry's books, very well done!
Rating this book was a bit difficult because there is very little profanity and sex but the subject matter is so adult. There is a part near the end when they are trying to rescue the boys who are being abused that made me a bit squeamish. I wouldn't want a younger teen to read it. For that reason I rated it PG-16.

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