My Little Pocketbooks: Review: The Last Dickens   

Monday, November 3, 2014

Review: The Last Dickens

The Last Dickens
Author: Matthew Pearl
Genre: Historical Murder Mystery
Publisher: Random House
Release Date: March 17, 2009
Hardcover: 400 pages
Source: Purchased from Barnes and Noble

Book Description

Boston, 1870. When news of Charles Dickens’s sudden death reaches his struggling American publisher, James Osgood sends his trusted clerk, Daniel Sand, to await the arrival of Dickens’s unfinished final manuscript. But Daniel never returns, and when his body is discovered by the docks, Osgood must embark on a quest to find the missing end to the novel and unmask the killer. With Daniel’s sister Rebecca at his side, Osgood races the clock through a dangerous web of opium dens, sadistic thugs, and literary lions to solve a genius’s last mystery and save his own–and Rebecca’s–lives.


This book has been on my bookshelf for years and years.  I have no idea why I bought it but more than likely it was a bargain bin pick since that is where most of my books came from.  
The story centers around the great author Charles Dickens and his sudden death.  With a new and popular book series out the publishing world goes into a mad frenzy to find out if there is a final book in the series and whats in it.  With dead body's, book thieves, murders and rampant drug use this book could take place in the heart of Los Angeles today.  It reads like a Sherlock Holmes feature film with all the characters and the who done it's.  
So why am I not raving about this book.  Well, let's just say it left me confused.  When a book has a who done it plot there are bound to me a few more characters than usual.  But this book had a ton of characters and the author took a few liberties to jump back in time and he even had a chapter or two from another characters perspective.  WOW!  That was a bit much for me.  I really like the James Osgood character and loved that the story was centered around him and his female sidekick Rebecca the divorcee.  But once they were not the focus my mind wandered off.  I just could not keep it going.  To be honest, this book almost made my DNF list.  If I had not just added a book to the list I wouldn't have finished this one.  
I think the author would have done so much better with this book if he had just told the story with Rebecca and James only and left it at that.  Yes! I know it would have been not as exciting without the back stories off all the players but there were just way to many for me.  

Reviews by Other Bloggers


I recommend this book to adult reads due to the violence, murder and the use of opium.


This book is number 8 in my Dusty Book Reading Challenge
This book is number 3 in my TBR pile Reading Challenge
This book is number 10 in my Off the Shelf Reading Challenge
This book is number 8 n my Rewind Reading Challenge 
This book is number 18 in my New Author Reading Challenge
This book is number 40 in my Goodreads Reading Challenge 

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