The Dark Lantern

The Dark Lantern

A Novel

Book - 2008
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Random House, Inc.
London, 1893. Elderly Mrs. Bentley is on her deathbed, and her son Robert has returned from France. But in the Bentleys’ well-appointed home, everyone has their secrets, including Robert’s beautiful and elusive wife, the orphan maid she hires from the country, and the mysterious young woman who arrives, claiming to be the bride of Robert’s drowned brother.

Robert is quickly developing a reputation in anthropometry, the nascent science of identifying criminals by body measurements. Yet soon he is caught up in the deceptions swirling around him, for no one under his roof is quite what they seem. When an intruder enters the house and ransacks the study, a chain of events is set in motion that threatens not only the genteel, comfortable life the Bentleys have managed to secure but also their very survival.

A fascinating portrayal of a vanished England as well as an unconventional mystery, The Dark Lantern exposes the grand “upstairs” of a Victorian home and the darker underbelly of its servants’ quarters. The clash between the classes makes for a suspenseful novel of mistaken identities, intriguing women, and dangerous deceptions.

Baker & Taylor
The clash between the genteel "upstairs" and servant "downstairs" and the dark secrets of two women turn the nineteenth-century London household of the Bentley family upside down, in a tale of mistaken identity and deception.

Blackwell North Amer
London, 1893. Elderly Mrs. Bentley is on her deathbed, and her son Robert has returned from France. But in the Bentleys' well-appointed home, everyone has their secrets, including Robert's beautiful and elusive wife, the orphan maid she hires from the country, and the mysterious young woman who arrives, claiming to be the bride of Robert's drowned brother.
Robert is quickly developing a reputation in anthropometry, the nascent science of identifying criminals by body measurements. Yet soon he is caught up in the deceptions swirling around him, for no one under his roof is quite what they seem. When an intruder enters the house and ransacks the study, a chain of events is set in motion that threatens not only the genteel, comfortable life the Bentleys have managed to secure but also their very survival.
A portrayal of a vanished England as well as an unconventional mystery, The Dark Lantern exposes the grand "upstairs" of a Victorian home and the darker underbelly of its servants' quarters. The clash between the classes makes for a suspenseful novel of mistaken identities, intriguing women, and dangerous deceptions.

Baker
& Taylor

The clash between the genteel "upstairs" and servant "downstairs" and the dark secrets of two women turn the nineteenth-century London household of the Bentley family upside down, in an atmospheric tale of mistaken identity, dangerous deception, and mystery, set against the backdrop of Victorian England. 40,000 first printing.

Publisher: New York : Crown Publishers, c2008.
Edition: 1st ed.
ISBN: 9780307395344
0307395340
Characteristics: p. cm.

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HylaryL
Aug 09, 2010

This book had the potential to be very interesting, but when it was all said and done, it didn't live up to expectations. The characters are portrayed convincingly, but unfortunately don't successfully navigate the plot which meanders and eventually fizzles.

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