The notorious Opium-Eater returns in the sensational climax to David Morrell’s acclaimed Victorian mystery trilogy.
Like Morrell’s previous De Quincey novels, Ruler of the Night blends fact and fiction to an exceptional degree, this time focusing on an actual Victorian murder so startling that it changed the culture—in this case, the first murder on an English train, its brutality stoking fears that the newly invented railway would, as one newspaper predicted, “annihilate time and space.”
In Ruler of the Night, readers again feel they’re truly on the harrowing fogbound streets of 1855 London as the brilliant Opium-Eater, Thomas De Quincey, and his irrepressible daughter, Emily, confront their most ruthless enemy. The stakes couldn’t be greater—both the heart of Victorian society and De Quincey’s tormented soul.
The fast-paced narrative matches the speed with which the railway changed Victorian life. It brings back Scotland Yard detectives Ryan and Becker, along with Lord Palmerston, Queen Victoria, and Prince Albert, and introduces a host of new characters from this fascinating era. Master storyteller David Morrell transports readers back in time, away from the modern world and into the dangerous shadows of the past.
Praise for Ruler of the Night:
2016 Best Historical Thriller
“An absolutely terrific series”
–Dean Koontz, New York Times bestselling author of The Silent Corner
“I love this series. RULER OF THE NIGHT actually made me believe I’d stepped into Victorian London. It’s an exciting blend of high-thriller and Dickens, with parallels to our own time that are both fascinating and unsettling. I’ve been a Morrell fan for years, and this is as gripping as anything he’s done.”
—John Sandford, New York Times bestselling author of Extreme Prey
“A terrific climax to the trilogy, a master class in plotting, and a thrilling read.”
—Judith Flanders, author of The Invention of Murder: How the Victorians Reveled in Death and Detection
“With RULER OF THE NIGHT, David Morrell concludes the most compelling, devious and fascinating mystery trilogy in decades. They’ll be reading these DeQuincey novels for generations. Bravo!”
–Jonathan Maberry, New York Times bestselling author of Kill Switch and Ghost Road Blues
“David Morrell, daddy of Rambo, friend of mine, saves his best for last in the closing installment of his Thomas and Emily De Quincey murder mystery-thriller trilogy. It’s 1855 and that genius of an opium-eater, Thomas De Quincey, and his engaging daughter are out to help Scotland Yard solve Victorian England’s first murder on a train. Morrell brings England to vibrant life, his characters feel so incredibly real, and you keep guessing at the killer’s identity but keep guessing wrong. Not only that, only David Morrell could make opium addiction so danged appealing. A wonderful conclusion follows the enlightening MURDER AS A FINE ART and INSPECTOR OF THE DEAD. Agatha Christie, eat your heart out.”
–Johnny D. Boggs, acclaimed Western novelist, author of Greasy Grass (about Custer’s last stand) and Return to Red River (a sequel to the famed novel and film)
“Spectacular third and final whodunit featuring opium addict and author Thomas De Quincey … builds to a powerful but bittersweet ending that will leave readers hoping that Morrell eventually chooses to resurrect this superb series.”
—Publishers Weekly (starred review), also a Book of the Week
“Morrell’s deft hand with thriller plotting provides copious chills and procedural satisfaction, but it is his mastery of character, shrewd exploitation of Victorian details and attitudes, and tonal sophistication that seduce and delight….It’s a cracking yarn, irresistible as an emergency bottle of laudanum. Richly detailed and engrossing; Morrell animates the Victorian era and delivers genre thrills with rare style and panache.”
“Morrell excels at constructing historically accurate mysteries with enough melodrama to satisfy any lover of Victorian novels. His protagonists are fascinating and entertaining; aficionados of the trilogy are going to miss De Quincey and company.”
“A complex, top-notch mystery, with a large cast of characters and multiple, interwoven plotlines…. Philosophical, uncannily perceptive De Quincey competes well with Sherlock Holmes for brilliance…. You don’t have to read this series in order, but you’ll want to read every volume.”
“David Morrell’s conclusion to the trilogy featuring Thomas De Quincey is another example of stellar writing and storytelling… He saves the best for last as he centers on a crime that haunted London. Real historical figures mix with the heroes, and the thriller elements are both terrifying and grotesque. Morrell’s impeccable research shines, as the story feels authentic and vivid. Readers will feel transported to Victorian London with all of the sights and sounds that go with it.”
“The final installment, and amazing conclusion to David Morrell’s Victorian mystery trilogy. And, boy, does it pack a wallop! … Mr. Morrell has no equal when it comes to placing the reader in a Victorian England setting filled with murder, mystery and mayhem. As the reader ‘sees’ the fog close in on them and ‘listens’ to the horses’ clip, clop on the cobblestones, it becomes impossible not to say that this author’s writing is so vibrant that the words come to life. The only unfortunate part of this experience is that as the words come to life, the De Quincey trilogy comes to an end. But knowing the mind of Morrell, there is something up his sleeve that will have us hanging on his every word very soon.”
“David Morrell concludes his brilliant Thomas De Quincey trilogy with another tale that fictionalizes a true-life case: the first murder committed on a British railway train….a joy to read. The novel expertly immerses us in another country and another time, while delivering characters so real they could be living next door to us right now.”
—Mystery Scene magazine
“An elegant and sumptuously entertaining journey into Victorian London highlights this superb thriller by the creator of Rambo. Wondrously gothic, Morrell’s concluding chapter of his trilogy centering on the exploits of historical figure Thomas De Quincy will appeal to old-school mystery fans of Agatha Christie and Arthur Conan Doyle, as well as mainstream thriller audiences. A truly rare and special read.”
—Providence Journal (Jon Land)
“The De Quincey series has been among the best works Morrell has produced since bursting onto the literary scene…[Morrell] has been called the “master of the thriller” for many years, but what he really has mastered is well-paced storytelling, weaving in real events with breathtaking and imaginative fiction…[RULER OF THE NIGHT] slams into the station with a fascinating climax…. Morrell has done it again, taking readers to an era most have only witnessed on the TV or movie screen and daring us to keep turning the page.”
—Cedar Rapids Gazette
SIGNED COPIES available at Poisoned Pen bookstore in Scottsdale, AZ (888-424-2842), Murder by the Book in Houston, TX (888-424-2842), Tattered Cover in Denver, CO (303-322-7727), Collected Works in Santa Fe, NM (505-988-4226), Bookworks in Albuquerque, NM (505-344-8139), and VJ Books online (www.vjbooks.com).
Photo-essays about Victorian Locations in Ruler of the Night:
Here are four photo essays about some of the fascinating Victorian locations in Ruler of the Night: Malvern’s Bizarre Water-Cure Clinic, Magnificent Euston Station, Wyld’s Strange Monster Globe, and Illustrious Dove Cottage.