The book opens with a fairly devilish scene in a graveyard which sets the tone for a novel that is dark in some parts, but equally mysterious, intriguing and entertaining. Geoffrey Thraxton is a bit of a cad with a fetish for the dead and in the book he is accompanied on his adventures by Algernon Hyde-Davies who I found to be a thoroughly likable chap. This sort of character is something I love about Vaughn Entwistle as an author- he has the ability to make you rather fond of his characters and when reading them you feel like one of the boys off on an adventure right alongside the main characters. He is particularly adept at creating a strong lead character who is helped along the way by his indispensable assistant, rather like Holmes and Watson.
As the novel progresses, Thraxton falls in love with a woman who makes him want to renounce his philandering and outlandish ways, the only problems being that her father strongly objects and that she only appears at night (I won't spoil the story by elaborating any more on this hint). Added into the mix is a bunch of thoroughly seedy thugs from the darkest depth of depraved London and a Doctor with some serious psychological problems and once again Vaughn Entwistle has created a novel with all the necessary ingredients for a fantastic read.
I really enjoyed The Angel of Highgate, and as it is a prequel in sorts to The Revenant of Thraxton Hall, I'm looking forward to re-reading that now that I know more about the background of it. The ending of the novel was particularly moving, and readers with a soft spot for a heart wrenching love story will be gripped by the final few chapters. Brilliantly written and captivating right until the end, you should put The Angel of Highgate on your 'to be read' list.
Read my interview with Vaughn Entwistle here
Read my review of The Dead Assassin here
More BOOK posts here