The latest addition to the series featuring inquiry agent William Monk is not only a fine mystery, but an exploration of Monk's unknown past. In all the years he's been investigating, the amnesiac Monk has not delved into his own lost memories, but the murder of railroad magnet Nolan Baltimore, in a brothel near Monk's wife Hester's clinic, propels him into the middle of a new inquiry into his past.

Katrina Harris also wants Monk to check on her almost fiancé, Michael Dalgarno, Baltimore's partner, who may be involved in railroad construction fraud.

As Monk begins to delve deeper into Dalgarno's possible deception, he unearths truths about himself that point to his involvement in a railroad tragedy years ago. Readers who have been following Monk's work will be fascinated to see this tortured hero uncover his memory and lay to rest pieces of his past. The thrilling and almost chilling climax is sure to linger in readers' minds, as will the magnitude of Ms. Perry's skill in bringing to life vivid portraits of the seedier side 19th-century England. DEATH OF A STRANGER is a virtuoso performance! (Oct., 337 pp., $25.95)

Reviewed by: 
Kathe Robin