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The Poe Shadow

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Description

Baltimore, 1849. The body of Edgar Allan Poe has been buried in an unmarked grave. The conclusion that Poe was a second-rate writer who died a drunkard is accepted by all. But none of this deters Quentin Clark, an ardent admirer who risks his own career and reputation in a passionate crusade to salvage Poe's.

Clark discovers that Poe's last days are riddled with vital unanswered questions. But just when Poe's death looks destined to remain a mystery, Quentin seeks out the one person who can solve this strange case: the real-life model for Poe's brilliant fictional detective character, C. Auguste Dupin.

Having successfully recruited the man he believes to have inspired Poe's Dupin, Clarke is confronted by another claiming to be the true model. The two master detectives each seek to prove he is the real 'Dupin' by solving the mystery of Poe's death. Clark finds himself enmeshed in sinister machinations involving international political agents, a female assassin, the corrupt Baltimore slave trade and the lost secrets of Poe's final hours. With his own future hanging in the balance, he must turn master investigator himself to unchain his now imperilled fate from that of Poe.

Publishers Weekly Review

01 May 2006 – Pearl's second historical thriller involving literary figures (after 2003's The Dante Club) is set in 1849, when young lawyer Quentin Clark's desire to burnish the tarnished reputation of his favorite author-poet, the recently deceased Edgar Allan Poe, drives him to such extremes he eventually winds up on trial for insanity and murder. His defense forms the novel. Singer provides Clark with a splendidly appropriate voice: young, intelligent, yet naïve and idealistic. He's also adept at capturing the attorney's shifting moods, from his indignation at journalists' shoddy sendoff of Poe (labeling him a debaucher and drunk) to an increasing obsession as he puts his practice and his impending marriage on hold, ocean-hopping to Europe to seek the aid of the real-life model for Poe's genius-sleuth, C. Auguste Dupin. Some listeners may raise an eyebrow at Singer's use of fractured French for one of the Dupins and an equally arch British accent for the other. They should be reminded that all of the characters are being filtered through the sensibilities (and vocal capabilities) of a not terribly sophisticated Baltimore barrister. Simultaneous release with Random House hardcover (Reviews, Mar. 13).
The Poe Shadow
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  • £6.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Crime & Thrillers
  • Published: 23 May 2006
  • Publisher: Random House
  • Print Length: 384 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: To view this book, you must have an iOS device with iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

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