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Vanishing Man: A Charles Lenox Mystery: 12 Audio CD – Unabridged, 19 February 2019
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About the Author
James Langton is an actor and narrator who has performed many voice-overs and narrated numerous audiobooks, including the international bestseller The Brotherhood of the Holy Shroud by Julia Navarro, Fire Storm by Andrew Lane, and An Old Betrayal by Charles Finch. He has won multiple AudioFile Earphones Awards for his work in narration. As a voice-over artist, he has worked with a host of industrial and commercial clients including Geico, Johnson&Johnson, and ask.com. He is also a professional musician who led the internationally renowned Pasadena Roof Orchestra from 1996 to 2002. Langton was born in York, England, and is now based in New York City.
- Publisher : MacMillan Audio; Unabridged edition (19 February 2019)
- Language : English
- ISBN-10 : 1250318203
- ISBN-13 : 978-1250318206
- Dimensions : 14.73 x 2.24 x 18.72 cm
- Customer Reviews:
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The Vanishing Man is the second prequel to the Lenox series. I've been reading this series for years, and last year's The Woman in the Water was such a joy to read. This is a series that is so well-written that you truly feel like you're there in Victorian England with the characters. Going back to the beginning to see Charles as a young detective beginning to find his way was just so much fun to read. So I was very happy to hear that The Vanishing Man would be another prequel, and I loved it even more than the previous book.
If you have not read any books by this author yet, I really do recommend starting with at least a few of his older books. Seeing the characters develop over time is so rewarding and makes the prequels even more enjoyable.
I love all of the historical details in these books, but I think the thing I love best is the relationships that the characters have with each other. A lot of the "side characters" add humor but also warmth and humanity to this series.
Really well done, Charles Finch!
As Lenox begins his investigation into this case, he is beset at home by the visit of a young cousin of twelve named Lancelot, who like many a mischievous boy before him, wreaks his own havoc on the household while gaining the affection of Mrs. Huggins, Lenox’s housekeeper. And, as in the other books in the series, Lenox is aided by the ministrations and perceptions of his valet, Graham. Graham functions both as a sounding board for ideas and as an invaluable sleuth in his ability to search out information in all sorts of places.
In addition to these characters, the main players include Sir Richard Mayne, the head of Scotland Yard, who takes Lenox more seriously now three years after his success in solving the case of the Thames Ophelia; Theo Ward, the private secretary to the Duke, who was a schoolmate of Charles’s; the Duke’s son Corfe, his daughter Violet, and his personal servant Craig; and finally, a mysterious man named Bonden, “an expert at finding things” who teaches Charles a valuable lesson in the detective art of observation.
We also meet again Lady Emma, Charles’s mother; his brother Edmund; and always in his heart his friend, Lady Jane who spends her days in this adventure trying to fix Charles up with all manner of eligible young ladies. It is a happy occurrence to note that the twenty-six-year-old Charles Lenox of 1853 has retained his youthful optimism and sense of humor. He even “cracks” a joke over his breakfast eggs which Graham, in a P.G. Wodehouse sort of way, responds to by calling it “painfully humorous.” And when Jane informs him that she is hoping the Queen will attend her party, Charles tells her to cut the branches of a tree in her garden lest it fall on that august guest.
As the story unfolds, the reader discovers that there is a far more priceless portrait that has not been stolen, and this is the crux of the mystery, for it is supposedly the only known painting from life of the playwright, William Shakespeare. Throughout the novel, as Charles works through the clues, he refers often to a small leather-bound book, given to him by his now late father, of quotations by that author. How does a glimpse of the profile of a young woman of Charles’s acquaintance lead him to the solution of the mystery?
Ever and always the author’s historical research is both insightful and oh, so interesting! This reader learned a new word (or two), “aleatory”, meaning “random” and delighted at a neologism, “afternoonified.”
Charles Finch is a master writer whose Victorian mysteries continue to regale his readers