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01 The Case of the Deadly Desperados (The P. K. Pinkerton Mysteries) Hardcover – 2 Jun 2011


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Orion Children's Books (2 Jun. 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1444001698
  • ISBN-13: 978-1444001693
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 2.6 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 444,966 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Million-selling author Caroline Lawrence writes detective stories with the double aim of entertaining children and teaching them. Combining fast-moving plots with historical accuracy means her history mystery stories are beloved of children, parents and teachers.

In 2009, Caroline won the Classical Association Prize for her Roman Mysteries series, which comprises over 20 books and inspired a glossy BBC TV series.

In 2011 Caroline launched a second historical detective series, the Western Mysteries, staring P.K. Pinkerton: a 12-year-old doubly orphaned detective who has trouble "reading people". The Case of the Deadly Desperados was the Sunday New York Times Editors' Choice in February 2012. P.K. Pinkerton and the Petrified man was shortlisted for an Edgar Award in 2014. The UK title of the same book is The Case of the Good Looking Corpse. P.K.'s third mystery was The Case of the Pistol-packing Widows. The final and fourth book in the series is The Case of the Bogus Detective.

Caroline has also written a book for Barrington Stoke, who specialise in books for dyslexic and reluctant readers. The Night Raid is a re-telling of the story of Nisus and Euryalus from Virgil's Aeneid.

Caroline says: "I want to know everything about the past, especially the exciting things. Also the sounds, smells, sights and tastes. I write historical novels because nobody has invented a Time Machine. And I write for kids because 11 is my inner age."

Caroline is also writing a spin-off series of Roman books for readers aged 7+, starting with
The Sewer Demon

Here are the Roman Mystery novels in series order:

The Thieves Of Ostia: The Roman Mysteries 1
The Secrets Of Vesuvius: The Roman Mysteries 2
The Pirates Of Pompeii: The Roman Mysteries 3
The Assassins Of Rome: The Roman Mysteries 4
The Dolphins Of Laurentum: The Roman Mysteries 5
The Twelve Tasks Of Flavia Gemina:The Roman Mysteries 6
The Enemies Of Jupiter: The Roman Mysteries 7
The Gladiators From Capua: The Roman Mysteries 8
The Colossus Of Rhodes: The Roman Mysteries 9
The Fugitive From Corinth: The Roman Mysteries 10
The Sirens Of Surrentum: The Roman Mysteries 11
The Charioteer Of Delphi: The Roman Mysteries 12
The Slave-Girl From Jerusalem: The Roman Mysteries 13
The Beggar Of Volubilis: The Roman Mysteries 14
The Scribes From Alexandria: The Roman Mysteries 15
The Prophet From Ephesus: The Roman Mysteries 16
The Man From Pomegranate Street: The Roman Mysteries 17

Here are the mini-mysteries:

The Legionary From Londinium And Other Mini-Mysteries
Trimalchio's Feast And Other Mini-Mysteries

Plus quiz books, omnibus editions, a travel book and a treasury:

The First Roman Mysteries Quiz Book
The Second Roman Mysteries Quiz Book
The Roman Mysteries Omnibus (Books 1-3) (B) (Feb)
The Roman Mysteries Omnibus (Books 4-6) (B)
From Ostia To Alexandria With Flavia Gemina
The Roman Mysteries Treasury


Product Description

Review

I Love, Love, LOVE it!!!! Pinky is a wonderful creation - authentic and lovable. It's exciting (I love all the cliffhangers) and funny and sometimes truly moving. (Sophie McKenzie, author of Girl, Missing)

Scalpings, six shooters, saloons and stage coaches. Clear your calendar because you'll want to read this in a single sitting! (Robert Muchamore, author of the Cherub series)

What we have here is a rip-roaring tale of the Wild West, with tons of credible local colour, a bunch of villains every bit as wicked as those to be found in Ancient Rome, and a likeable lead character... Original, intriguing, and a lot of fun, this book is well worth reading. (THE BOOKBAG)

Lawrence swaps Ancient Rome for the whip-cracking Wild West in a new historical series. The Western Mysteries is set in an 1860s mining camp, which sees 12-year-old P K Pinkerton determined to outwit the outlaws and become a detective. The Roman Mysteries have an outstanding track record. (THE BOOKSELLER)

We were only saying the other day that it is about time the Wild West came back into literary fashion, and blow me, ace historian and writer, Lawrence, inspired by the brilliant grown-up telly series Deadwood fires off the first of the PK Pinkerton mysteries, featuring a short gunslinger with a long list of disguises. (Bookseller Crow FAMILIES SOUTH EAST)

I enjoyed this rip-roaring, yee-hah adventure and I particularly liked the characters... I really liked this book! (Delilah Ferry-Swainson, age 11 FIRST NEWS)

I felt like I had stepped instantly back into Virginia City, right into the middle of a gun fight. I could almost hear the gun shots... this book is extremely detailed and keeps you on your toes the whole way through. The chapters are short, sharp and each one is finished off with an excellent cliff-hanger. All the characters come alive... (SERENDIPITY BLOG)

A gripping yarn, ideally suited for boys or girls aged 9+ (WE LOVE THIS BOOK)

Pinky is one of the most engaging heroes I have come across. (TELEGRAPH)

... a fast, funny adventure that cracks along as smartly as a cowboy's whip (Amanda Craig THE TIMES)

...vivid, alive and detailed... the book is full of humour... This book is quirkily different, fast-paced and great fun and I recommend it. (THE SCHOOL LIBRARIAN)

The story moves along at a pace, is very exciting and is full of twists and turns (BOOKS FOR KEEPS)

the action hurtles along at break-neck speed.... It's fast, action-packed (NATE CLASSROOM)

Recreating life in the 'Wild West' during the time of the American Civil War, this series is all set to be another triumph! (GOOD BOOK GUIDE)

Featuring real historical characters, as well as convincingly portrayed fictional ones, you get the feeling that Lawrence had a whale of a time immersing herself in the lore and ephemera of the era. Her enjoyment leaves you exilherated and throroughly entertained. (CAROUSEL)

I really enjoyed this rip-roaring, yee-hah adventure. I really liked this book! (Delilah Ferry-Swainston FIRST NEWS)

I have a great fondness for first person narrative and for books with a really clear and unusual voice, so I was hooked o this story from the first page! ... I can't wait to see what PK does next. (FANTASTIC READS)

Book Description

From the author of the bestselling Roman Mysteries, a new series set in the Wild West, packed with danger and deadly desperados at every turn!

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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Serendipity Reviews TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 15 Jun. 2011
Format: Hardcover
Caroline Lawrence is extremely well known for writing The Roman Mysteries which has helped lots of children embrace the Romans and find a love of history at the same time. Caroline has now embarked on a new journey and has presented us with the first book in The Western Mysteries series, which takes us back to the Wild West of America, Virginia City in 1862 to be precise.

Up until reading this book, my only real knowledge of the Wild West was through the last film in the Back to the Future trilogy. So I was extremely pleased to be given so much more information about that time period within this book. Caroline Lawrence has obviously researched the Wild West meticulously as the attention to detail is unbelievable. Caroline Lawrence knows what she is talking about. I felt like I had stepped instantly back into Virginia City, right into the middle of a gun fight. I could almost hear the gun shots from the Double Deringer.

The narrator for the story is P.K. Pinkerton. Don't ask me whether the character was a boy or girl, because quite frankly I am not quite sure. The author twisted the plot backwards and forwards with this mystery leaving me confused (on purpose I believe) as to the sex of the narrator. I think it is a boy, so I will call him that for now, but who knows. All I do know is the narrator was 12 years old, was half Indian and half America and that his mother had died, leaving him with a set of foster parents. He is also a very brave child to come up against such deadly character so fearlessly as he does.

I am certain that P.K. Pinkerton is slightly autistic, by his inability to decipher people's emotions and his quickness with numbers. However, the author never makes that public knowledge, so I could be wrong.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Fahad on 4 Jun. 2011
Format: Hardcover
This is the book that we have all be waiting for a great western book set in Virgina city gives everything ,the hot sun, the dust and the selfish characters.Virgina city is a harsh town where everyone has a gun "You look conspicuous without one"and no one does anything out of Christian kindness(If you'll pardon my French.)Caroline incorporates real characters into the story flawlessly and brings them back to life.In the book the prospect of death is very real and around every corner someone could point a gun at you.It is set in the time of the silver rush and shows who has power in such a barren place.This is a book for all ages and can be enjoyed alone or in a group.The book is more than a well written story it is a peace of art that has been beautifully illustrated by Caroline's husband it is a book to be treasured.At such a good price you would have to be dehydrated not to buy it as this is as possibly as good as the price will get.This is a book to be enjoyed again and again and it written on high quality paper it is more than just a book it is a work of art.Hats off to Caroline Lawrence!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Sarah (Feeling Fictional) TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 16 July 2011
Format: Hardcover
In the first book in her new Western Mysteries series Caroline Lawrence takes us back in time to Virginia City in 1862. We follow the story of P.K Pinkerton who is being chased by a gang of desperados, they already killed and scalped his foster parents and he is next on their list. I say HIS foster parents but throughout the entire book we're never quite sure if P.K is actually a boy or a girl. The author has done a fantastic job of keeping P.K's gender a secret, he adopts numerous disguises throughout the story and I was constantly changing my mind about whether he is a boy or a girl. Either way he was a character I loved and I can't wait to get my hands on the

I'm sure P.K. is autistic, the way he thinks reminds me a lot of Christopher, the main character in The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time. Both characters are extremely intelligent but have trouble understanding facial expressions, don't like to be touched and aren't comfortable when their routines are changed. Of course there would have been no way of identifying autism back in the Wild West so this is never confirmed but I would be very surprised if it wasn't true. P.K. finds it very hard to work out who is telling him the truth which makes it very difficult for him to decide who to trust and leads to him getting into trouble on more than one occasion.

The Wild West is a harsh and violent place where everyone is out for themselves and most people will only help you if they're going to get something out of it. Caroline Lawrence has captured the atmosphere perfectly and it feels like you are walking through Virginia City beside P.K. with the desperados not far behind.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Susan Purkiss on 15 Aug. 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a terrific start to a new series - very fresh, very different. Pinky, the lead character, is a twelve year old boy who, at the beginning of the book, finds that his beloved foster parents have been slain and scalped by the 'Deadly Desperadoes' of the title - and unless he can somehow manage to outwit them, he's next. So much happens, and it's so inventive; you feel absolutely immersed in the atmosphere of the Wild West - which seems to have been pretty much absent from fiction for a good many years now. There's a wide variety of richly imagined characters, but Pinky himself is special: he can't 'read' expressions, and doesn't know how to show feelings either - the author sets herself a challenge with such a narrator, but she triumphantly meets it. Fantastic fun!
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