Saturday, 2 March 2013


The Meaning of Night (The Meaning of Night #1)
by Michael Cox

Edward Glyver has a confession to make: He's responsible for an unsolved, entirely random murder in Victorian London. But there are untold confessions to come, starting with the fact that Glyver is not his real name, and that his true identity, as heir to one of England's wealthiest and most influential peerages, is slowly being usurped by his childhood archrival, Phoebus Daunt.

Unwilling to accept the middle-class fate chosen for him by his mother, Edward plumbs the truth of his heritage. Deftly navigating the murky confines of London in his quest to find his mark -- an unscrupulous con man who has charmed Edward's father into making him heir to the estate -- Edward succumbs to a vice that has precipitated the downfall of many before him: revenge.

What makes The Meaning of Night so utterly fascinating is the way in which Edward's obsession slowly, insidiously corrodes his own conscience. As he slides, almost too effortlessly and without real regret, from the position of wronged victim into that of victimizer, Cox suggests that the ultimate face-off between Edward and Daunt is not so much a struggle between right and wrong as a precursor to the loss of principles that characterizes the post-Victorian age. A bravura performance.

The Glass of Time (The Meaning of Night #2)
by Michael Cox

Building on his haunting, superbly written debut, The Meaning of Night, Michael Cox returns to a story of murder, love, and revenge in Victorian England.

In the autumn of 1876, nineteen-year-old orphan Esperanza Gorst arrives at the great country house of Evenwood in Northamptonshire. There she will serve as the new lady's maid to the former Emily Carteret, now Lady Tansor. But Esperanza is no ordinary servant. She has been sent by her guardian, the mysterious Madame de l'Orme, to uncover the secrets that her new mistress has sought to conceal - and to set right a past injustice in which her own life is intertwined.

Unable to escape the reverberations of past misdeeds, Lady Tansor finds herself desperate to keep Esperanza from learning dark, dangerous truths.

As well as a page-turning period mystery, The Glass of Time is a beautifully written and vividly imagined study of seduction, betrayal, and friendship between two powerful women bound together by the past.

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