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Long Spoon Lane (2006)

Long Spoon Lane (2006)
3.87 of 5 Votes: 3
0345469283 (ISBN13: 9780345469281)
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Long Spoon Lane (2006)
Long Spoon Lane (2006)

About book: A decent read, although if you picked this up as your first Anne Perry/Thomas Pitt book, like me, you might find yourself rather confused. There are numerous references thrown in to events in previous novels, and most of the main characters had a lot of history together that is only vaguely hinted at here.Perhaps being a first time reader of Pitt books is also the reason why I found it difficult to identify with or even like any of the characters, with the possible exception of Vespasia. I found Pitt rather insufferable with his naivete regarding human nature and his morals; he's "pained" to realize there's police corruption, it leaves him shaken and weak to find out the higher-ups in the police force may be part of the anarchists... How has he survived in the world so far? It's very hard for the reader to connect with a character who is so distanced from reality. Charlotte may have been a better main character, but we didn't get to see enough of her (at least in this book).I found myself dissatisfied at the way the book ended, as well; it felt to me like Perry had run out of her page quota, and decided to end it on a sudden note. After waiting patiently for the climax, when it came, not only did it not include the main character, but it was over in two pages. I'm not sure whether the other Pitt books are better, but at the moment, I don't feel the urge to track them down.

I really enjoyed this book. I expected it to be another of my pure brain candy books, and to be pure fluff but there was a bit more there. Granted, some of the conspiracy theory stuff with the Inner Circle feels a bit contrived, but I really enjoyed the debate around arming the police. It was a modern debate inserted legitimately into this Victorian novel. Also the relationship between Voisey and Pitt was fascinating. Trust was a huge part of this book, who do you trust, and how do you work with someone you do not trust. In the end, Pitt’s trusting nature almost got him killed, but I felt good that he did not let his character get impacted by Voisey’s less admirable one. The discussion around police carrying guns and having higher rights to search and invade privacy was quite a modern one too. In light of 9/11 and the Patriot Act, the discussion of fear letting the mob make irrational decisions that give the government too much power was very significant to modern society. It left me thinking more than many of my other brain candy books, considering the significance of certain actions. It also turned “good people” on its head, as the police were the corrupt ones, and the true anarchists were much more moral than them.
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Thomas and Charlotte Pitt are at it again. As part of his duties in Special Branch, Thomas is called in after a group of anarchists set off a bomb and one of them is murdered. The investigation unveils the corruption in the police force. Pitt enlists the help of his former Sergeant at Bow Street and the beau of his maid Gracie, Tellman. Tellman has to walk a fine line because his superior officer, Wetron, is also the head of the Inner Circle made up of men intent on gaining power. Pitt must also work with his enemy Voisey who is also trying to expose Wetron and regain the power he lost. Wetron is working with other members of the Inner Circle to introduce a bill in Parliament that would greatly expand the powers of the police. They would be allowed to carry firearms and to question servants without the knowledge of their employers. This could lead to all kinds of trouble -- servants getting back at their employers etc. Very timely with the Patriot Act. Good read.
"If you dine with the Devil, you need a long spoon." In this book in the Charlotte and Thomas Pitt series, Pitt is still part of the Special Branch, this time dealing with anarchists, and those who wish to use anarchy to gain their own ends. More development of the characters of Tellman, Gracie, and Narraway is welcome, as well as Aunt Vespasia. However, the plots of the Special Branch novels are bordering on the redundant as the Bow Street novels did after many stories. I am interested to see where Perry takes the series henceforward.
Kelley Blanks
This books takes a turn from previous books as it has Thomas working with a long time enemy, Charles Voissey. The bombings have almost the feel of current events and add a great deal of intensity. There are several plot lines that have been going on through previous books that are brought together in this book and some resolutions that are greatly appreciated by a long term reader.It is also very nice to see the relationship between Tellman and Gracie growing. She is one of my favorite characters in the series.The horror that is police corruption and the impact it can have on both individuals and society is nicely highlighted and is central to the story.
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