The Devil in the Marshalsea, Paperback

The Devil in the Marshalsea Paperback

Part of the Thomas Hawkins series

5 out of 5 (1 rating)


WINNER OF THE CWA HISTORICAL DAGGER AWARD 2014. Longlisted for the John Creasey Dagger Award for best debut crime novel of 2014. London, 1727 - and Tom Hawkins is about to fall from his heaven of card games, brothels and coffee-houses into the hell of a debtors' prison. The Marshalsea is a savage world of its own, with simple rules: those with family or friends who can lend them a little money may survive in relative comfort.

Those with none will starve in squalor and disease. And those who try to escape will suffer a gruesome fate at the hands of the gaol's rutheless governor and his cronies. The trouble is, Tom Hawkins has never been good at following rules - even simple ones. And the recent grisly murder of a debtor, Captain Roberts, has brought further terror to the gaol.

While the Captain's beautiful widow cries for justice, the finger of suspicion points only one way: to the sly, enigmatic figure of Samuel Fleet. Some call Fleet a devil, a man to avoid at all costs.

But Tom Hawkins is sharing his cell. Soon, Tom's choice is clear: get to the truth of the murder - or be the next to die. A twisting mystery, a dazzling evocation of early 18th Century London, THE DEVIL IN THE MARSHALSEA is a thrilling debut novel full of intrigue and suspense.


  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton General Division
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Historical mysteries
  • ISBN: 9781444775433



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This was chosen as a book group read otherwise I would never have read it, and I would have missed out on a wonderful read. A quote on the cover states that it is dripping with atmosphere and it is definitely that. Tom Hawkins, having found himself in the Marshalsea, a brutal debtors prison in the 1700s, sets about finding out who killed prisoner, Captain Roberts, and if he can do that then he can be free. Tom is an interesting character but Samuel Fleet, his fellow prisoner, was probably my favourite character of all. And the Marshalsea, what an interesting place. I loved the writing and thought this was a book to savour, a bit like The Miniaturist in that respect. I certainly didn't find it a book to race through, no matter how much I was enjoying it. I'm looking forward to reading the next book featuring Thomas Hawkins.

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