Philadelphia, 1844: As violent tensions escalate between nativists and recent Irish immigrants, Edgar Allan Poe’s fears for the safety of his wife, Virginia, and mother-in-law, Muddy, are compounded when he receives a parcel of mummified bird parts. Has his nemesis returned to settle an old score? Just as odd is the arrival of Helena Loddiges, a young heiress who demands Poe’s help to discover why her lover died at the city’s docks on his return from an expedition to Peru. Poe is skeptical of her claims of having received messages from birds and visitations from her lover’s ghost, but when Miss Loddiges is kidnapped, he and his friend C. Auguste Dupin must unravel a mystery involving old enemies, lost soul-mates, ornithomancy, and the legendary jewel of Peru.
"Come for the mystery, stay for Street’s fantastic characters, gorgeous writing, and oodles of atmosphere. This is an utterly delightful treat that’s not to be missed. You’ll certainly get more out of the series if you start with Edgar Allan Poe and the London Monster, but you can certainly jump in here without much of a hiccup." (Criminal Element)
"Edgar Allan Poe once again plays detective in Street’s excellent sequel to 2016’s Edgar Allan Poe and the London Monster. Street enhances the Grand Guignol plot with a plausible and empathetic portrayal of her lead". (Publishers Weekly, starred review)
"Street excels at seamlessly joining history and fiction… Her depiction of Poe’s relationship with Sissy, his young wife, and Muddy, his mother-in-law, is skillfully drawn and very touching." (Library Journal)
"Its Gothic mix of antebellum Philadelphia, exotic Peru, hints of vanished cultures and lost treasure, taxidermy, and a cast of intriguing and unusual characters drew me into the tale like a fly caught in a spider’s web." (Historical Novel Review)
"An enjoyable romp through the drawing rooms, theaters, and docks of early-19th-century Philadelphia." (Kirkus Review)
Karen Lee Street
Karen is the author of a gothic-tinged mystery trilogy featuring sleuthing duo Poe and the great ratiocinator C. Auguste Dupin: Edgar Allan Poe and the London Monster (2016); Edgar Allan Poe and the Jewel of Peru (USA: May 2018, UK/ Australia: August 2018); Edgar Allan Poe and the Empire of the Dead (2019). Karen’s previous publications include Tattoos and Motorcycles, a short story collection linked by a crime, and Writing and Selling Crime Film Screenplays. She is also an experienced feature film script editor, a screenwriter, and has a PhD in Writing. She lives in Newcastle, NSW.