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Gods of Gold: A New Police Procedural Series Set in Late Nineteenth Century Leeds (A Det. Insp. Tom Harper Mystery) Hardcover – 28 Aug 2014


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Severn House Publishers Ltd; First World Publication edition (28 Aug 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 072788428X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0727884282
  • Product Dimensions: 23.3 x 13.3 x 2.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,319,505 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

I'm the author of the Richard Nottingham books, historical mysteries set in Leeds in the 1730s and featuring Richard Nottingham, the Constable of the city, and his deputy, John Sedgwick. The books are about more than murder. They're about the people of Leeds and the way life was - which mean full of grinding poverty for all but the wealthy. They're also about families, Nottingham and his and Sedgwick, and the way relationships grow and change, as well as the politics, when there was one law for the rich, and another, much more brutal, for everyone else.

And now there's a new series, mysteries again, set in Leeds in the 1890s and featuring Detective Inspector Tom Harper of Leeds Police.

Why Leeds? It's where I was born and raised, and that puts a place in your bones. You know it the way you can never quite know anywhere else...but that said, I spent a little while living near Chesterfield, which gave rise to The Crooked Spire

In addition to this I'm also a music journalist, reviewing for magazines and online outlets, something I've been doing since the mid 1990s, specializing these days in world and roots music. Much of that was in Seattle, a city I do love, and inspired Emerald City and the follow-up, West Seattle Blues.

Candace Robb, author of the excellent Owen Archer and Margaret Kerry mysteries, said this about my work:

"Chris Nickson's years covering the music scene clearly inform his writing--his Richard Nottingham crime novels are not just stories, they're total immersion experiences in the underbelly of 18th century Leeds. Clever use of period slang and vivid detail bring to life the people, the culture, the gritty reality of early industrial culture, brutal and dehumanizing. Constable Richard Nottingham is a shrewd, appealingly human man with a keen social conscience and deep roots in the city. His family and colleagues are portrayed with a warmth and sly humor worthy of Dickens. Immensely addictive, this series just keeps getting better."

Product Description

"Introducing Detective Inspector Tom Harper in a brand-new historical mystery series." June 1890. Leeds is close to breaking point. The gas workers are on strike. Supplies are dangerously low. Factories and businesses are closing; the lamps are going unlit at night. Detective Inspector Tom Harper has more urgent matters on his mind. The beat constable claims eight-year-old Martha Parkinson has disappeared. Her father insists she s visiting an aunt in Halifax but Harper doesn t believe him. When Col Parkinson is found dead the following morning, the case takes on an increasing desperation. But then Harper s search for Martha is interrupted by the murder of a replacement gas worker, stabbed to death outside the Town Hall while surrounded by a hostile mob. Pushed to find a quick solution, Harper discovers that there s more to this killing than meets the eye and that there may be a connection to Martha s disappearance."

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Damaskcat HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 24 Sep 2014
Format: Hardcover
This is the first book in a new series and very good it is too. Set in Leeds in 1890 during a strike of gas workers, it features Detective Inspector Tom Harper and his DS Billy Reed. A young girl from the slums of the city is missing from what used to be Harper's beat when he was a young constable. He knows the parents and the girl, Martha. Her father says she is staying with his sister but Harper knows he doesn't have a sister.

Unfortunately the gas workers strike and stopping violence breaking out in the city is considered more important than looking for one missing girl but maybe Harper and Reed can do both. Workers have been brought in from elsewhere to man the gasworks but one of them is stabbed to death on the steps of the town hall. Harper and Reed are told to investigate the crime and forget about anything else for the moment.

This is an excellent start to the series and I shall be watching out for future books. I enjoyed the portrait of Leeds - a city of contrasts between the very rich and the very poor. Harper himself is an interesting character who is about to be married to Annabelle, a young widow, who owns a pub and several bakeries and who doesn't believe in sitting around and letting a man keep her.

Can Harper and Reed solve both crimes together with the increasing number of murders which keep happening of people connected with both of the cases they are investigating? Will they be allowed to investigate if it seems that powerful men are involved? Fortunately their superior wants to solve crime whether or not he manages to keep in with the right people.

I recommend this book to anyone who likes historical crime series. The author has also written another crime series set in Leeds this time in the eighteenth century and featuring Richard Nottingham. I received a free copy of this book from NetGalley for review purposes.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I have long been a fan of Chris Nickson's Richard Nottingham series of novels although I was beginning to sense it had run its course. After all, Leeds, a city I love, has always fascinating to me with regard to its history, didn't really become of real major important until the 19th century when it grew to be a major city for tailoring and clothing manufacture. Think of Burton, John Collier, Hepworths etc: they were all Leeds companies, started mainly by Jews fleeing from violence in Eastern Europe and Russia.

So the first novel in a new detective series set in the 19th century was very welcome to me. And with it, I believe that Chris Nickson has 'come of age' as a historical crime novelist. (not that he wasn't good before. He was.) With a larger more important city to work with, more and more people, more industry and scope for crime, he has created a fine duo in Detective Inspector Tom Harper and Sergeant Reed. Harper is astute and knows how to 'join the dots' to solve a crime. He is on the side of the down-trodden and is a man who does not give up a hunch easily even when discouraged by his superiors. His personal life is a good read too. Sergeant Reed is a much more troubled man. Army service in Afghanistan has damaged him. He drinks far too much and he struggles to control his violent temper when the red mist of frustration rises. But, like Tim, it looks as if the love of a good women will be the making of him. I shall wait and see with great interest.

I look forward to what has all the makings of a brilliant new series.
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By Denyse King on 5 Oct 2014
Format: Hardcover
Gods of Gold is filled with characters that keep you reading just so you can get to know them better. This historical crime novel is a triumph; satisfyingly detailed and robust. Although this is the first in this new series, Chris Nickson has already proved his skill in writing historical crime fiction with the Richard Nottingham series. The RN series was a brilliantly written series that allowed the reader to wallow in the story whereas this new series is action packed, racing through the intricate plot to unfold as a perfect novel.

Note: I read this book through a free download from NetGalley in exchange for a fair review.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 2 reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Get it now! Amazing New Series 2 Dec 2014
By Kathleen Ingram - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition
Gods of Gold instantly transports the reader to 19th century Leeds, with its atmosphere of grittiness and extremes of power and powerlessness. Detective Inspector Tom Harper makes his debut, as a champion of law and justice, however difficult such a task may be in the last decade in the 1800s.

Chris Nickson builds his novel by retelling his father's story of the proprietress of the Victoria in Sheepscar, a distant relative of theirs. Annabelle, who rose from maid to mistress is Tom Harper's fiancé in Nickson's tale.

In June 1890 Leeds is in crisis, with strikers and strikebreakers and the ever present criminal that preys on the misfortunes of others. A young girl, Martha is reported as missing by the beat officer but her mother is in prison and her petty criminal father first lies and later is found dead.

Harper and his assistant,older veteran Billy Reed, are told that the polarizing strike is the only focus of the entire police force. Determined to find Martha, the two begin to realize that all the crises have common perpetrators, protected by the city's powerful.

Superb historical detail and depictions of time and place make this an irresistible choice of a historical police procedural. I recommend this book for anyone who likes a good mystery,historical or not.
Chris - you've done it again! 14 Dec 2014
By Phyll Clover - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I thoroughly enjoyed this book, based in my home town. In fact my 2 x great uncle was one of the policemen involved in the New Wortley Gas works riots.
Looking forward to the next book!!
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