Chris Nickson: The Hanging Psalm A Simon Westow Mystery #1



Rks from the author Dark deeds and vengeanceI m loving the lead character Simon Westow and in particular his assistant Jane A damaged young woman who does what she has to survive on the dark streets of the underbelly of Regency 1820 s LeedsSimon a thief taker has been asked to find businessman John Milner s kidnapped daughter Hannah The taking of Hannah leads Simon and Jane down some twisted paths and into the path of a wholly unexpected enemyA gripping story of revenge and corruption The character of Jane is fascinating Can she become or is she destined to a life lived within the confines of her traumatic past allowing it to define her Exciting readA NetGalley ARC Thief taker Simon Westow is the latest of Chris Nickson s superbly drawn historical sleuths and having greatly enjoyed the rest of his work I m hoping that this is the first in another series The author s storytelling is beautifully balanced between suspense and action the characters rich and vibrant the historical background in this case Regency Leeds as always engaging detailed and authentic I d love to see these books attract a larger audience I can easily seem them being adapted for television where the vivid description and colourful cast would find an appreciative audience Author Chris Nickson presents a gripping new series set during the Regency period in his home city of Leeds featuring thief taker Simon Westow Simon is a product of the workhouse a place where the cruelty he suffered still causes him pain today albeit affecting his mental rather than his physical health Despite all of this he s managed to carve a niche for himself finding and returning stolen possessions to their rightful owners for a fee but when businessman John Milner calls on his services to find his kidnapped daughter Hannah it unleashes a terrifying chain of events for Simon and his familyIt s 1820 and an adversary from his past will entice Simon and his assistant Jane into the dark forbidding courts and alleyways of Leeds scary places where all manner of criminal activities occur Jane makes an excellent partner but although she s lived with Simon and his wife Rosie and their two children for 2 years they still know very little about her she appears to have no feelings at all very cold and distant but she actually feels very deeply about things in her life she ust doesn t show it to the world she won t let anyone in but woe betide anyone who thinks they ll get the better of her they might ust pay with their lifeI really enjoyed this one the characters were great the plot was gripping and the author really captured the sense of a place I ve previously read some of this author s books and I recognise and appreciate the research that goes into them because as well as including locations that still exist today he also mentions a network of mean dirty cobbled yards and courts places where sunlight never penetrated these places actually existed but have long since disappeared from the landscape of Leeds however the author manages to bring them vividly back to life in a most frightening manner and the bonus He has a real gift when it comes to writing good old fashioned historical crime If you haven t read any of his books yet you re missing a treatMy thanks to Severn House Publishers for my ARC for which I have given an honest unbiased revie. Sistant Jane Simon takes to the dark shadowy streets of Leeds for information streets he knows like the back of his hand But his enuiries lead Simon and Jane into great danger Could the answers lie in Simon's own past and an old enemy seeking reven.

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epub online The Hanging Psalm A Simon Westow Mystery #1 AUTHOR Chris Nickson – cafe1919.org

The Hanging Psalm by Chris Nickson is a murder mystery set in early nineteenth century Leeds England which also sheds a great deal of light on both the living conditions and the working conditions endured by children of the poor Also emphasized by Nickson is the great divide which results from class structureThe protagonist Simon Westow manages to scrape out a life for his family by retrieving stolen property for wealthy individuals In The Hanging Psalm the stolen property he is tasked to find is a teenage daughter who indeed is little than property to her father and her potential fiance Retrieving the young lady leads Simon and his delightful assistant through a tangled web of deceit and murder Ultimately it is realized that the evil being rendered upon Simon and all whom he loves is an act of revenge by a person from his pastNickson has done a great deal of research into the Leeds of 200 years ago He elouently describes the lack of sanitation the buildings the roads and the various types of people and occupations that could be found therein He is especially poignant when describing the lot of the poor and homeless in a time when there was absolutely no social network available His descriptions leads one to reflect on the progress that may or may not have been made by modern day societyAll in all The Hanging Psalm is an exciting and suspenseful read which accurately reflects its time and placeI received a free copy of this ebook via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review Great historical evocation but of a thriller than a mystery Full review at classicmysteryblog I read uite a lot of historical fiction so I was very pleased to be advanced a copy from Netgalley I found the story and historical detail lacked complexity and there was a lot of telling not showing This is an enjoyable read Having read a couple of the Harper books I brought this first Simon Westow book home and enjoyed it It provides a good historical snapshot of Leeds 1820 Westow has two sons with wife Rosie and operates out of his home as a thief taker Essential to his work is a young girl Jane who knows how to shadow people In this entry Westow is hired to find a kidnapped daughter of a mill owner There is than enough danger to go around and plenty of stabbings between the core groupWestow also testifies to a group of Commissioners who want to bring reform to child labor in the mills something Westow was subjected to as a childLibrary Loan Never vanishing Never fadingChris Nickson sets the stage for The Hanging Psalm with Simon Westow appearing before the Child Labour Commission It s 1820 in Leeds and the heaviness in the air reflects the somber tone of his statement Simon has carried the emotional and physical burden of his seven years from age 6 to 13 in a government workhouse after his parents died Even at age thirty the memories almost choke him in the re telling But not one commissioner asks for the names of the mill owners and overseers As usual cruelty rides away on its dark horseSimon through hard work and a determined spirit has become a Thief Taker His newly found profession is likened to a bounty hunter of stolen property And Simon is uite good at what he does while making a living for his resourceful wife Rosie and their twin sons Simon has engaged a young waif by the name of Jane who knows the. Introducing thief taker Simon Westow in the first in a new historical mystery series set in Regency Leeds Leeds 1820 Thief taker Simon Westow knows all about lost property A boy from the workhouse he now has a comfortable business finding and retur.

Streets like the back of her hand Jane will become a central figure as the story progressesJohn Milner an investment businessman visits Simon with a very serious reuest His daughter Hannah has been kidnapped Milner bluntly puts it out there that a daughter is a valuable commodity A good marriage can never be arranged if said daughter has been damaged in any way The ransom note threatens irrevocable harm to Hannah if payment is not made With concern than what has been shown by the father Simon and Jane set out to find HannahChris Nickson paints a vision of Leeds in which the reader is immersed in the sights the smells and the atmosphere of mud filled streets and shabby storefronts His characters wear faces of rejection and the stain of poverty Existence drained you Nickson reveals layer upon layer of Jane s backstory and the deep impact that it has had on her life Her shaky footsteps through the darkened winding streets of Leeds speak of survival in spite of the oddsNickson will see to it that you are engulfed in the heightening bolts of electricity as the pressure keeps escalating at the end Simon and his family may have laid a rut of tracks for a profound evil to wind its way into their nest And young Jane will be a constant presence in which you beg for mercy for those whom life has betrayed time and time againI ve read many books by this talented author but The Hanging Psalm has to be one of my favorites Chris Nickson is a master of historical fiction I received a copy through NetGalley and wish to extend by thanks to both Chris Nickson and to Severn House for the opportunity As with all Chris Nickson s books you can feel yourself sinking into history as soon as you start reading the first page I am familiar with the period and to my mind he has got the s and the morals spot on but I don t know Leeds so was fascinated by the descriptions of the cityThe story itself I found utterly believable the characterisation of Simon Jane and Rosie was very good I have always been drawn to the problems of the middle class and working class and this is a slice of life that Chris Nickson describes very well He pulls no punches so the book isn t an easy read by any means It does however feel very realI m looking forward to further stories featuring Simon Westrow and his world A new historical series form Leeds writer Nickson and this time we re in 1820 I found this one darker than the other series although all are crime books I think possibly because unlike the others Simon Westow isn t a policemansheriff but a thief taker he finds stolen goods and returns for a fee His assistant Jane is a very dark character a past victim of abuse and a secret self harmer there are some mental health issues that she s hiding and it will be interesting to see how this development changes over time There are a lot of twists and turns in this book You think you have a handle on who may be responsible the crimes but then it changes completely and occasionally we go around to the same people a few times until Simon finally works everything out I enjoy the art of story telling and mystery solving without the modern day need for forensics and CSI style drama but using good old fashioned footwork and plugging away until all the answers are in place and this book delivers that for me A great addition to the other wo. Ning his clients' stolen possessions But when John Milner a successful Leeds businessman seeks out Simon's services to find his kidnapped daughter Hannah it's clear he faces a challenge like no otherAccompanied by his enigmatic and capable young as.

I'm a novelist and music journalist the author of many books set between the 1730s and 1950s in Leeds as well as others in medieval Chesterfield and 1980s SeattleAbove all though its Leeds I love the people the sense of the place changing with time Yes I write mysteries but ultmiateoly they're books about people and their relationships and the crime becomes a moral framework for the sto