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Seven for a Secret [Paperback]

Lyndsay Faye
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
Price: 13.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Paperback, 17 Sep 2013 13.99  

Book Description

17 Sep 2013

Timothy and Valentine Wilde must once again delve into the darkest underbelly of old New York.

When the beautiful and terrified Mrs Lucy Adams stumbles into the Tombs, headquarters of New York's newly formed police force, it's the beginning of a dense, thorny maze of crime for copper star Timothy Wilde. He's hardened to the injustices of life in the unforgiving city he's grown up in, but that doesn't mean he accepts them. With immigrants flooding into the docks every day, each community is both adapting and fighting for its place in the new world, and there are many who fall victim to the clash. But the worst menace growing on the streets are the blackbirders; slave catchers who make a tidy sum from their human trade. And Timothy is about to be taken right to heart of them...

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Seven for a Secret + The Gods of Gotham (Gods of Gotham 1)
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Product details

  • Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Headline Review (17 Sep 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0755386795
  • ISBN-13: 978-0755386796
  • Product Dimensions: 15.3 x 23.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 647,206 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


Praise for THE GODS OF GOTHAM: 'A wonderful book. Lyndsay Faye's command of historical detail is remarkable and her knowledge of human character even more so. I bought into this world and never once had the desire to leave' (Michael Connelly)

'Executed with brio and packed with pungent historical detail...this is a cracking yarn' (Daily Mail)

'The Gods of Gotham succeeds on many levels: as a colourful, crackling evocation of an underworld packed with desperados; as an unflinching glance into the history of some of New York's shadiest and most shameful corners; and as a cleverly crafted crime story with a central character who deserves a new case, and another book' (Metro)

'The dangerous underworld of New York in the mid-nineteenth century... wonderfully vivid and vigorous' (The Sunday Times)

'This is special...The historical detail is impressive in a character-driven tale spotted with an underground language called Flash, which is fascinating. Stunning... highly recommended' (Sarah Broadhurst, 'Ones to Watch' Paperback Preview, Bookseller)

'The slums of 19th-century New York... [a] rollicking historical novel...with vibrant characters' (New York Times)

Book Description

From the author of the highly acclaimed GODS OF GOTHAM comes another vivid, gritty, historical novel set around mid-nineteenth century New York's notorious Five Points

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Lyndsay Faye: Seven for a Secret. 21 Dec 2013
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
In the follow-up novel to "Gods of Gotham" Faye has taken a much under-appreciated aspect of the issue of slavery in 1840`s America - the iniquitous activities of slave-catchers.

The story continues the career of Timothy Wilde of the recently formed New York City police force, and is narrated in the first-person as a case-file by Wilde himself; an investigation into the abduction of a black woman and child leads him into the murky and immoral world of "blackbirders" who, under the legally sanctioned business of re-capturing escaped slaves, will snatch any black person in the knowledge that the law will do little to prevent them. This premise makes for a long and convoluted plot, evocative of the period due to the level of historical detail and use of language the author has employed. As in her previous novel, this presents the reader with an immersive recreation of the New York underworld of the era; where it falters a little is in the levels of verbosity her character indulges in, which can require a degree of patience. I can quite understand that some readers may find this off-putting, although I myself enjoy the author`s use of language; there is less "flash" vernacular in evidence this time around, but it is present - it isn't difficult to follow, taken in context.

On the whole, this succeeds well as an historical detective novel with the advantage of relatively unusual subject matter; good as a stand-alone read, better if you've read the first in what I now assume will be a series.
I enjoyed it and am happy to recommend it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Cant 18 Feb 2014
By The Emperor TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
If you liked ‘Gods of Gotham’ you should like this. It is well written, has a genuinely interesting historical setting, interesting characters and might even teach you a few things.
I don’t want to give away any spoilers so I will simply say that I would thoroughly recommend it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good read 4 Feb 2014
By cjb
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A good sequel to Gods of Gotham, this kept my attention well, and you get a real feel for 19th century New York.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant Historical Crime Drama 17 Sep 2013
Seven For A Secret by Lyndsay Faye is one of the most atmospheric, historically rich crime thrillers that I have read in a long time, and it is certainly one of the best historical crime novels I have read. In terms of imagery and the use of language it is absolutely spot on for the English usage in New York in the 1840s, of both native New Yorkers. Fortunately for those easily confused there is a selected terminology that criminals used at the time, adapted from a book of the time, the writer of which appears in the novel.

The novel is set in New York 1846 and the New York Police Department has only been in existence for six months. New York is being filled by people from all over America, the world and nowhere in particular. Added to this is the daily influx of the Irish escaping the potato famine in Ireland and escaped slaves from the southern states as well as the free slaves of New York.

Timothy Wilde is one of New York's copper stars based at the Tombs who starts by investigating a stolen art work but then stumbles on to the more dangerous world of the slave catchers. Slave catchers who will stop at nothing to return slaves back to their southern owners and masters and will use all the violence necessary to protect their trade. It is Wilde's wayward brother Valentine, a police captain and fireman that often has to come to his brother's aid.

While investigating the disappearance then murder of Lucy Adams brings Wilde in to every devious aspect of New York life in 1846, while trying to find her sister and son hopefully alive. This brings him to the attention of corrupt police officers, the Vigilance Committee and the famous Slave Underground Railway that operated in New York.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
There can be no doubt Lyndsay Faye is a talented writer. In Seven for a Secret she evokes a wonderful sense of history in the guise of New York during the mid 19th century. The immigrant population is huge and more and more people are flooding into the City in an attempt to escape poverty and destitution. The differing cultures don't necessarily live happily alongside one another and there's a great sense of friction, uncertainty and mistrust running through the novel. I don't know how accurate the historical research has been but; the historical elements work so well I was prepared to let go of any doubts and go along with the story.

The core of the novel is all at once captivating, dark and awful as 'blackbirders' prowl and search for anyone who might be considered an escaped slave and who can be returned to their 'owner' for profit. Problem is; the blackbirders aren't too choosy and seem happy to capture freemen alongside those still considered enslaved. What follows is a mixture of cultural diversity, poverty, crime and kidnapping running alongside a newly created police force, copper stars, sent in with little more than a note book and a great deal of street smarts to clear up the mess.

In general I enjoyed the characters and found them a quirky, odd mix of the believable and the not quite so much. Faye does the best job she can with dialogue and makes a canny attempt at a realistic vocabulary, to the extent she has included a dictionary full of words that have now slipped out of common use. There is a supplement at the start of the novel to introduce the reader to those words and their meanings.

Seven for a Secret is a joy to read but it's also frustrating in places as not a great deal happens.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars One more in this excellent series
Lyndsay Faye's Timothy Wilde is shaping up to be a character you will care about a great deal, to say nothing of his brother Valentine. Read more
Published 2 months ago by S. Nambiar
3.0 out of 5 stars 2nd Wilde brothers mystery
1840s New York once again sees police man Timothy Wilde fighting hard against a society that is very unequal and merciless to those at the bottom. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Enlightening Expediency
I read ‘Seven For A Secret’ a few days after watching the film ‘12 Years A Slave’ which covers the same subject of slave-catching in mid 1840s in America. Read more
Published 5 months ago by D. Elliott
4.0 out of 5 stars Good historical police book....
I really enjoyed this book....It tells the story of "coppers" in New York....setting up a new Police service...fighting and investigating crime....the story is a good one... Read more
Published 8 months ago by mandynolan
3.0 out of 5 stars Potential to be much better than it was
On the positive the characters are strong and well drawn. The setting also is evoked cleverly and there was little doubt in my mind of the images of the grimy New York... Read more
Published 9 months ago by Janie U
5.0 out of 5 stars Seven for a Secret
"Seven for a Secret" is the second book in Lindsay Faye's crime series in nineteenth century New York. Read more
Published 9 months ago by Champollion
5.0 out of 5 stars Another winner
Another great effort from Faye, with the characters and their relationships becoming even more developed from the last novel. Great stuff!
Published 9 months ago by Tim Durbin
4.0 out of 5 stars a shocking revelation
Just occasionally a book comes my way to review that totally blasts all my previous convictions about just about everything, in this new episode in the life of Timothy Wilde,... Read more
Published 10 months ago by David Spanswick
5.0 out of 5 stars The Triumphant Return of Timothy Wilde
The first book in Lyndsay Faye's tales of the Wilde brothers, The Gods of Gotham, ended up as number five on my best of 2012 books. Read more
Published 10 months ago by W.M.M. van der Salm-Pallada
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