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LJ Ross’ Book Club Pick: August
Staying in
July 2021
Reading time 2 minutes
Northumberland-born LJ Ross is the bestselling author of the DCI Ryan murder mystery series. Each month, she shares an exclusive Book Club pick with Living North readers.
The Tiger in the Smoke

This month’s shot of classic fiction comes in the form of taut psychological thriller, The Tiger in the Smoke by Golden Age crime-writing heavyweight, Margery Allingham. The novel is atmospheric, to say the least: set in the midst of an old-fashioned ‘pea-souper’ in post-war London, a violent killer runs amok through the shadowy streets. It falls to Albert Campion, the quintessential Gentleman detective, to  uncover the perpetrator and bring to an end his murderous rampage, before it’s too late…


LJ’s Thoughts:

‘The likeable character of Albert Campion first appeared in a minor role in Allingham’s breakthrough novel, The Crime at Black Dudley, and proved so popular with readers that he made a permanent return in Mystery Mile, going on to feature in a further 17 of Allingham’s novels and 20 short stories. Such was the enduring quality of the detective she had created, and it’s not difficult to see why: Campion is a sophisticated, well-developed character, who sits well within an equally sophisticated crime novel with a well-constructed plot, a smorgasbord of interesting suspects (money-lenders, escaped convicts and musical veterans to name a few…) and a neat, satisfying ending that leaves the reader feeling as though they’ve enjoyed a tasty meal. So, why not indulge yourself? Sit back with a cuppa and immerse yourself in Allingham’s faultless description of London at another time, which still manages to be relevant in today’s world.’

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