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City of the Absent (Inspector Alastair Ransom Mysteries)

City of the Absent (Inspector Alastair Ransom Mysteries) [Kindle Edition]

Robert W. Walker

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Product Description

Product Description

Chicago's magnificent White City will soon be fading into memory. As the grand Exposition of 1893 reaches its final day, the metropolis is rocked by the public assassination of its popular mayor. In the chaos that ensues, another murder—the savage slaughter of a Pinkerton agent posing as a prostitute in a seedy slum alleyway—goes virtually unnoticed . . . except by police inspector Alastair Ransom.

An avenging angel haunted by the ghosts and mistakes of his past, Ransom called the slain detective, Nell Hartigan, "friend"—and his unorthodox inquiries into her murder are pointing him toward a fiend who's targeting the city's most unremarkable and disposable citizens. But in a great urban slaughterhouse, where foul corruption festers in every dark corner, Ransom will find himself accused of the one crime he did not commit . . . and facing the final judgment of the hangman's noose.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 314 KB
  • Print Length: 334 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0060740124
  • Publisher: HarperCollins e-books (6 Oct 2009)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B001NH4AVE
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #866,682 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

I am the author of some 55 novels, 40 of which were published via NYC publishers and all of which are now Kindle titles via books. I am a graduate of Northwestern University and hold a Bachelor of Science Degree in Enlgish/Education. I have taught all manner of writing for over 30 years, and I have penned a few books in between. I was born in Corinth, Mississippi USA but I was raised from an early age in Chicago, IL USA. I won a full scholarship to Northwestern University on the basis of my first novel written while a Junior in high school at Wells High, Chicago. I was voted president of my Junior and Senior year of high school. Since then I have won a number of writing awards and great accolades and reviews for my Instinct and Edge Series, and my historical novels as well. I am primarily a storyteller and a crime writer. Even my historicals are about crimes in history.

I currently reside with my family in Charleston, West Virginia. My website is at and I maintain a presence on 3 Facebook pages including one for Titanic 2012 and another for writing advice and help under Robert W. Walker (Rob).

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 3.8 out of 5 stars  8 reviews
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars I feel cheated 29 Feb 2008
By J. H. Tate - Published on
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I cannot recommend a book whose ending leaves you hanging.I should have known this might occur, due to the many,many references to previous cases.If this is a ploy to sell more books,Mr. Walker just lost this reader.Too bad, since I agree that it was a good read-until the end.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Story of Chicago Crime set in the Past but very Contemporary 24 Aug 2009
By Toni V. Sweeney - Published on
Format:Mass Market Paperback
City of the Absent begins with a murder and ends with the main character being arrested for another murder, one which he wanted to commit but didn't. The first murder is that of the mayor of Chicago and occurs on the last night of the Columbian Exposition in 1893. When a female Pinkerton operative is killed shortly afterward, police Inspector Alastair Ransom swears to find her killer. Soon, however, Ransome finds himself being pulled into an intrigue which can result in nothing short of his own death and nothing good for his associates. Haunted by past deaths for which he feels morally--if not actually responsible--and because he's bent, if not actually fractured the law in previous cases in order to dispense justice, Ransom has to watch his step as his own police chief, as well as certain other influential citizens and the head of the Pinkerton Agency seem bound and determine to bring him down. At last, it appears they have succeeded when he's arrested for a murder and his attorney is soon after poisoned and hospitalized. This is a dark but entertaining tale which, except for the mention of Mr. Edison's electrical inventions and the "new-fangled telephones" Hansom cabs. etc., could be contemporary in its storyline. Public officials are corrupt and doing everything to maintain their power, including ridding themselves of anyone who is an obstacle; undercover private police are killed in the line of duty; priests are accused of improper behavior with their acolytes; derelicts are being killed and their organs removed for sale--not for transplantation, however, but for study. My only argument with the story is that it ends on a cliff-hanger. Since this is the third in a series, I hope the next one has already been published for I'd certainly like to find it and discover if Ransom escapes the noose waiting so patiently for him and brings his accusers to justice. He's such a vibrant and determined character, I'd hate for this to be his ignominious end.
4.0 out of 5 stars Ransom 25 Aug 2010
By S M Senden - Published on
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
Walker gives us another dose of Inspector Alastair Ransom at his finest set against the Columbian Exposition of 1893.
2.0 out of 5 stars Cactus Pete Rides Again 8 Jun 2010
By Science Buff - Published on
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Years ago a TV station ran western movies on a show hosted by "Cactus Pete." To make sure the audience stayed tuned during commercials, Pete (or the producer) would stop the movie just as Gene Autrey was falling off a cliff, and then return to continue the movie, where Gene landed in a wagon load of featherbeds. This novel uses the same crass and idiotic gimmick to try and force the reader to buy the next book in the series (if there is one) by leaving "Inspector" Ransom incarcerated and awaiting the noose on a bogus murder charge. The author and publisher did the same crass trick with the first of the three book series, of having a cliffhanger ending. Please adapt to modern conventions of publishing and end each book in the same book, rather than crudely attempting to force readers to buy the next book, as if this were a silent movie serial. Seems quite archaic.
5 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Fair's End 27 Nov 2007
By Ted Feit - Published on
Format:Mass Market Paperback
On October 28, 1893, the World's Fair in Chicago came to an end, two days later than its scheduled closing, to allow former President Benjamin Harrison to visit. That Fair was the setting for a prior novel in the series featuring Inspector Alistair Ransom of the Chicago Police Department, Shadows in the White City. Both novels reflect the author's love of the Windy City and its history.

As the Fair was being closed down, the Mayor was assassinated on his front lawn by an office seeker. Never a dull moment in the nation's second city. In addition, there occur a series of "disappearances" of persons who "wouldn't be missed." These didn't rate much attention until a disguised female Pinkerton agent was found murdered and disemboweled. She was a friend of Ransom's, and he leads the charge to solve the grisly murder.

Ransom is a larger-than-life protagonist, allowing the author to make all kinds of observations about the city, its politics, graft and other characteristics. His methods are unorthodox, and in this episode he finds himself accused of one act of which he is not guilty. The book is written in the same tone as the era it depicts and is a page turner.

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