cover image The Gods of Gotham

The Gods of Gotham

Lyndsay Faye. Putnam/Amy Einhorn, $25.95 (432p) ISBN 978-0-399-15837-7

Set in 1845 New York City, Faye’s knockout first in a new series improves on her impressive debut, Dust and Shadow (2009), which pitted Sherlock Holmes against Jack the Ripper. As Irish immigrants pour into the city, fleeing the potato famine in their homeland, Timothy Wilde, a 27-year-old former bartender, adjusts to life as a policeman in New York’s newly formed police force. As one of the first to wear the copper star, Wilde soon discovers more than one unwelcome surprise. In short order on his lower Manhattan beat, he runs across an infanticide and the body of a 12-year-old Irish boy whose spleen has been removed. The investigation the novice detective launches into the boy’s murder brings him deep into the heart of human darkness. Vivid period details, fully formed characters, and a blockbuster of a twisty plot put Faye in a class with Caleb Carr. Readers will look forward to the sequel. Agent: Erin Malone, William Morris. (Mar.)