Thank you to Sarah Harwood of HarwoodPR.Com for this beautiful proof copy of debut novel A Fatal Crossing by Tom Hindle, published by Century, part of Penguin Random House to read and review. I’m sharing my non spoiler thoughts today.
November 1924. The Endeavour sets sail to New York with 2,000 passengers – and a killer – on board . . .
When an elderly gentleman is found dead at the foot of a staircase, ship’s officer Timothy Birch is ready to declare it a tragic accident. But James Temple, a strong-minded Scotland Yard inspector, is certain there is more to this misfortune than meets the eye.
Birch agrees to investigate, and the trail quickly leads to the theft of a priceless painting. Its very existence is known only to its owner . . . and the dead man.
With just days remaining until they reach New York, and even Temple’s purpose on board the Endeavour proving increasingly suspicious, Birch’s search for the culprit is fraught with danger.
And all the while, the passengers continue to roam the ship with a killer in their midst . . .
I love reading books set in the 1920’s, and this book has leapt to the top ten of my favourite books set in this era. The art deco cover design is stunning.
This book is set on the cruise ship Endeavour, a luxury form of travel to New York. The boat has lavish first class cabins, a captain who is on his last journey, and a dead man, who was travelling under a false name.
Added to the mix is Temple, a grumpy Scotland Yard detective who refuses to say why he is travelling to New York and Birch, a heartbroken man clutching a hair ribbon, and a large cast of other characters with secrets, valuable paintings, snobbish behaviour and weapons.
Temple and Birch work, sometimes together, to find out what happened to the man found dead at the bottom of the staircase. There are a number of possible suspects and more deaths before a twist I’m still thinking about four days later.
I’m keen to recommend this book to readers who enjoy historical fiction and/or crime fiction in the style of Agatha Christie. This would also make an excellent TV series or film. I look forward to reading more by Tom Hindle in the future.
Originally hailing from Leeds, Tom Hindle now spends his days in Oxfordshire, where he lives with his fiancée and two surprisingly cunning tortoises. Inspired by masters of the crime genre, from Agatha Christie to Anthony Horowitz, A FATAL CROSSING is his debut novel.