The House on Vesper Sands by Paraic O’Donnell
Okay, so this isn’t officially released in the US until January 12, but it was published in the UK back in October. Paraic O’Donnell’s second novel is the perfect Frankengenre-read for anyone who digs historical fiction, mysteries, supernatural yarns, snarky yet sensitive detectives. Set in London during the harsh winter of 1893, the story begins with the suspicious death of a young seamstress who is found with a message stitched onto her skin. As the narrative winds its way through the dark recesses of some of Victorian England’s most peculiar occult societies, it is up to the unlikely threesome of a Scotland Yard inspector, his bashful and insightful assistant, and a curious young beat reporter to unravel the mystery behind a continuing series of unusual deaths that are somehow all connected. While The House on Vesper Sands doesn’t really have anything profound to say about the hellacious year we’ve just experienced, it does have is a whole lot of suspense, humor, atmosphere, and charm. That’s exactly the kind of story we could use right now.