Kept: A Victorian Mystery - D .J. TaylorChatto & Windus, 2006, Hardback in Dust Wrapper.
Condition: Very Good — in Very Good Dust Wrapper. Gently bruised at the spine ends and corners with commensurate ruffling to the dustwrapper. Leans slightly. Text complete, clean and tight.
From the cover: “August 1863. Henry Ireland, a failed landowner, dies unexpectedly in a riding accident, leaving a highly-strung young widow. Not far away lives Ireland’s friend James Dixey, a celebrated naturalist who collects strange trophies, a stuffed bear, a pet mouse, and a wolf that he keeps caged in the grounds of his decaying house, lost in the fog on the edge of the fens. The poachers, Dewar and Dunbar, with their cargo of pilfered eggs; Esther the observant kitchen maid, pining to be reunited with her vanished admirer; the ancient lawyer Mr Crabbe made careless by snobbery; John Carstairs, in search of his cousin, the elusive widow; an enigmatic debt-collector, busily plotting an audacious robbery; various low-life henchmen; a beady-eyed country curate who sees more than he should; and Captain Me Turk of Scotland Yard, patiently investigating the circumstances of Mr Ireland’s death and many other things besides — all are drawn into a net of intrigue with wide and sinister implications. Ranging from the lochsides of Scotland to the slums of Clerkenwell, and from the gentlemen’s clubs of St James’s to the Yukon wilds, Kept is a gorgeously intricate novel about the urge to possess, at once a gripping investigation of some of the secret chambers of the human heart and a dazzling reinvention of Victorian life and passions.”