Murder in the Mist

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Pub Date 05 Dec 2023 | Archive Date 30 Nov 2023

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Description

Tis the season of goodwill, and Dickens extends the hand of friendship to a stranded stranger and his nephews for Christmas, with deadly consequences . . .


"The ingenious solution to the mystery makes this the series’ best entry yet. Victorian whodunit fans are in for a treat" Publishers Weekly  Starred Review

Wilkie Collins is looking forward to spending Christmas at Gads Hill, Charles Dickens' Kentish country home, but the festivities are cut short when a body is found on the snowy marshland. Timmy O'Connor was invited to the gathering with his four nephews after a chance encounter with Dickens, but is now dead.

Dickens is convinced the murderer is one of the convicts from a nearby prison ship, but Collins is not so sure. Who was this mysterious and unpleasant stranger from Cork who turned Christmas cheer to fear? With the convicts, guests and even Timmy's nephews under suspicion, there is no shortage of suspects for such a violent act, but which one of them is a cold-blooded killer?

Tis the season of goodwill, and Dickens extends the hand of friendship to a stranded stranger and his nephews for Christmas, with deadly consequences . . .


"The ingenious solution to the mystery makes...


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ISBN 9781448311347
PRICE $29.99 (USD)
PAGES 240

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Average rating from 23 members


Featured Reviews

My Review📖✒️
Murder in the Mist is book five in the historical Gaslight mystery series. Like the other books in the series, Murder in the Mist can be read as a stand-alone novel.
Spending Christmas at Gads Hill, the Kentish country home of Charles Dickens, is looked on fondly for Wilkie Collins. But this year, the festivities are interrupted when a body is found on the snowy marshland. Timmy O'Connor was invited to the gathering with his four nephews after a chance encounter with Dickens but is now dead.
With a prison ship full of convicts close by, the guests and even Timmy's nephews under suspicion, there is no shortage of suspects for the murder, but which of them is a cold-blooded killer? It's up to amateur sleuths Dickens and Collins to find out.
The blend of real-life characters and historical surroundings brings this clever and fascinating murder mystery to life. The actual true-life close friendship of Charles Dickens and Wilkie Collins is brought to the fictional table in these unique mysteries.
There is plenty of misdirection, along with a few neat twists within the narrative, as well as the usual shenanigans that precede the duo. As I said in a review of a previous book in the series, maybe not Sherlock Holmes or Doctor John Watson, but they both brought their particular individuality and skills to the table.
Murder in the Mist is well-crafted, well-conceived and, as with the previous books in the series meticulously well-researched. Maybe a tad slow-paced at times but livened up as things navigated their way towards the nitty gritty and climactic conclusion to events.
Murder in the Mist by Cora Harrison is an atmospheric, uniquely addictive murder mystery, a fine addition to the series and definitely worthy of a read. Recommended.

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I thought this book looked and sounded like something that I would enjoy.

This was a Victorian mystery, and it was excellent. Something that sparked my interest from the start, was the fact that this book featured fictionalised representations of two significant figures in classic literature. The story was narrated by Wilkie Collins, and Charles Dickens also featured as a main character. It always interests me to see how well-known historical figures are portrayed in works of fiction, and I felt that both Collins and Dickens were portrayed wonderfully. I loved the friendship between them; that was something that went to my heart.

I was drawn in by Collins' narration from the first two pages, and I wanted to read it all. I would also say that it was light to read in one sitting. It was very good indeed.

Thank you to NetGalley and the publishers for a free copy to review.

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"Tis the season of goodwill, and Dickens extends the hand of friendship to a stranded stranger and his nephews for Christmas, with deadly consequences...

Wilkie Collins is looking forward to spending Christmas at Gads Hill, Charles Dickens' Kentish country home, but the festivities are cut short when a body is found on the snowy marshland. Timmy O'Connor was invited to the gathering with his four nephews after a chance encounter with Dickens, but is now dead.

Dickens is convinced the murderer is one of the convicts from a nearby prison ship, but Collins is not so sure. Who was this mysterious and unpleasant stranger from Cork who turned Christmas cheer to fear? With the convicts, guests and even Timmy's nephews under suspicion, there is no shortage of suspects for such a violent act, but which one of them is a cold-blooded killer?"

I so want Collins to have like a bizarre theory that proves to be correct to Dickens' consternation.

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This was a murder mystery that seems tailor-made to be read over Christmas in the best tradition of Dickens and Wilkie Collins.
The story is centred around a Christmas House party held by Dickens to which the novelist Wilkie Collins is also invited. Dickens also has some unexpected Irish guests who he has offered a place to stay to. On a visit to a local graveyard, one of the Irishmen is found murdered. It turns out that he was a well known money lender and many of the people staying with Charles Dickens might have good reasons to want him dead.
I always love Cora Harrison’s books although I hadn’t read any of this series before. This one works well as a stand alone and is short enough to easily be read in one night in front of a warm fire. The setting is brilliantly described and the contrast between the church and the surrounding marshes with the warm hospitality offered by Dickens is really effective. I enjoyed the way that we see Dickens begin to get ideas for Great Expectations during the course of the story too.
Thank you to Net Galley and the publishers, Severn House, for my ARC.

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At Christmas in 1859, Charles Dickens’ country home of Gad’s Hill is full to bursting. Dickens, his wife and ten children, plus friends, colleagues, and writers including Wilkie Collins, are gathered in celebration. The strangers in this cosy camaraderie are Timmy O’Connor, an unpleasant man Dickens met in Cork, and his nephews, all of whom seem thoroughly cowed by their uncle. Wilkie senses immediately that something is amiss, and his dear friend, Georgina, a young heiress now deprived of beautiful accoutrements by the fact that she has frittered away her fortune and gone borrowing, apprises Wilkie of the real O’Connor. Behind the façade of the generous uncle―bequeathed his brother’s money with the empty promise that he would take care of his four orphaned nephews―is an unscrupulous moneylender who will stop at nothing to root out secrets with the express purpose of blackmailing his clients and wallowing in their misery. His sudden death near Cooling Churchyard isn’t of particular concern to anyone. The suspect list is long, including convicts from a prison ship, most of Dickens’ guests, his staff, and Georgina herself.

While Victorian life is beautifully drawn here, and interesting facts about usury, prison ships, and protagonists Dickens and Collins abound, I found this whodunnit slow going. It feels repetitive and flat, and the writing didn’t fit my expectation, having read many highly enjoyable Burren and Reverend Mother mysteries by the author. The identity of the murderer isn’t immediately obvious, but Wilkie’s plodding thought processes do little to propel the plot forward, and Dickens shows more interest in parlour games and carol-singing than a possible murderer under his roof. Of most interest is Dickens’ musing about the man who would become Abel Magwitch. This is the fifth in the Dickens and Collins Gaslight Mystery series.

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Know that Harrison takes liberties (a lot of them) with the lives of Wilkie Collins and Charles Dickens but this is still a pretty good historical mystery. It's the Christmas season and the pair team up to solve the murder of Tim (really?) whose body is found in the marsh. The atmospherics are good and the identity of the villain might come as a surprise. Thanks to Netgalley for the ARC. For fans of the genre.

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An aspiring authors invitation to the home of Charles Dickens leads to a solved murder.

Charles Dickens is an established author who enjoys holiday gatherings with family and friends. Wilkie Collins is an aspiring writer invited to spend Christmas with Dickens at his magnificent home. Tim O'Connor and his three nephews are also Dickens guests. Tim O'Connors underhanded tactics with his nephews finances does not bode well for him. Wilkie learns that Tim made many enemies due to his owning a convict ship and being a loan shark. Wilkies inquisitive mind helps to solve a case of who done it.

A "Murder in the Mist" takes readers to England and Ireland. I enjoyed the character of Wilkins who thinks of what material to use in future books while solving the murder. A recommended read for those interested in UK mysteries.

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Many thanks to NetGalley and Severn House for this Advance Reader Copy and the opportunity to review “Murder in the Mist.” All opinions and comments are my own.

Like author Cora Harrison’s other books in this series, “Murder in the Mist” is no stranger to strong characters and an even stronger plot and situations. After all, she has the works of Wilkie Collins and Charles Dickens as inspiration. Which means using these two as fictional “detectives,” she has a lot to live up to. Luckily, “Murder in the Mist” is equal to the task.

But, this book isn’t about the murder that occurs in the pages. For the man who dies is a bad man, and deserves what he gets. Readers (and everyone in the book) know that from the get-go. And, as Wilkie Collins, our narrator relates eventually, the murderer is discovered merely through a “process of elimination,” one that may be figured out fairly easy.

No, this book is all about how not to identify a killer, because of how despicable the dead man is; and also, how Charles Dickens goes about living his life -- and everyone else’s. It’s really quite a wonderful process. The author paints a picture in almost every scene.

An Author’s Historical Note explains the significance of “Great Expectations” on its influence on “Murder in the Mist.” It also recognizes the real people mentioned in the story.

“Murder in the Mist” is a memorable book, richly imagined. Charles Dickens and Wilkie Collins would both be able to see merit in its pages, for the tight pacing, remarkable characters and word portraits delivered by the two main protagonists.

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Murder in the Mist was the first of Cora Harrison’s Wilkie Collins/Charles Dickens novels I have read, and it won’t be the last. I thoroughly enjoyed this tale of a mysterious murder during one of Charles Dickens’ famous Christmas house parties. The tone, atmosphere, characters, as well as the mystery itself were all perfect. Highly recommended. 4.5 stars.

I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

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‘I wished him good night and was left with a warm feeling of affection for Dickens. He had a multitude of annoying practices, could be dictatorial, but he was a wonderful friend.’

Wilkie Collins accepts an invitation to spend Christmas at Gads Hill in Kent with Charles Dickens and his family. Dickens has also invited several other guests, including Mr Timmy O’Connor and his four nephews whom he met in Ireland.

Alas, Timmy O’Connor is not a particularly likeable man and when he is found murdered near a church on the coast while on an outing with Dickens and some other guests, there are quite a few suspects. Including his nephews. Or could it be one of the convicts from a nearby prison hulk?

Collins and Dickens investigate. Along the way, Dickens gathers material for one of his books and Collins learns more about the character of Timmy O’Connor. Georgina, one of Dickens’s other guests, tells of O’Connor as an unscrupulous moneylender, quite willing to use blackmail to achieve his objectives. Ms Harrison cleverly keeps us in suspense as the story unfolds. Almost everyone had a motive for murder, but who was responsible, and why?

Ms Harrison is a prolific mystery writer. I have read novels from two other series (the Burren Mysteries and the Reverend Mother Mysteries) as well. Each series is well researched, and while each mystery can be read as a standalone, I enjoy seeing the development of the main characters.

A very enjoyable addition to the Gaslight Mystery Series.

Note: My thanks to NetGalley and Severn House for providing me with a free electronic copy of this book for review purposes.

Jennifer Cameron-Smith

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It is the best of times: A Christmas book starring Charles Dickens.

The English novelist teams up with mystery writer Willie Collins in the fifth book in Cora Harrison's Gaslight Mystery series.

The setting is Dickens' home, where he has invited several friends and some strangers to spend Christmas. The action focuses on who killed an evil money lender, but there is plenty of space for observing period Yuletide customs. The only thing missing is Tiny Tim.

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The Gaslight mysteries is an entertaining series and I'm always curious to know what Dickens and Collins will investigate.
This is another good and solid story and it kept me guessing and turning pages.
Recommended.
Many thanks to the publisher for this ARC, all opinions are mine

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There is something oddly comforting about Victorian murder mysteries. I especially liked the main character Wilkie Collins, as I feel the author does an excellent job capturing the inner world of A Victorian Author. The outer Victorian world is well detailed, also, a whole character on its own. It’s Christmas at the Dickens’ home and Wilkie is glad to be invited to spend the holiday with the family. He brings his housekeeper and her daughter, too.
The misery of a prison ship contrasts with the high holiday feelings as Wilkie goes there to investigate a murder of a rather unpleasant guest of Dickens’. A very well plotted murder mystery with lots of interesting characters. This is the fifth in the series, but apparently all five can be read as standalones. I’m definitely going back to read some of the earlier novels and looking forward to the next.

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