About the book
William May returns to London after the horrors of the Crimean War. Scarred and fragile though he is, he lands a job at the heart of Bazalgette’s transformation of the London sewers. There, in the darkness of the stinking tunnels beneath the rising towers of Victorian London, May discovers another side of the city and remembers a disturbing, violent past. And then the corruption of the growing city soon begins to overwhelm him and a violent murder is committed. Will the sewers reveal all and show that the world above ground is even darker and more threatening than the tunnels beneath? Beautifully written, evocative and compelling, with a fantastically vivid cast of characters, Clare Clarke’s first book is a rich and suspenseful novel that draws the reader right into Victorian London and into the worlds of its characters desperately attempting to swim the tides of change.
Reviewed by Fleet U3A reading group:
The description of the Victorian sewers was very evocative and you could imagine the smell in your own nostrils. Too much build-up, with the ending rather rushed. Book would have benefitted from more editing. The relationship between Tom and his dog, Lady, very well written. Rose was another interesting character but there was too little of him. A good debut novel though.
Star rating: ***