The Resurrection Fireplace by Hiroko Minagawa

London, 1770. Brilliant physician Daniel Barton and his students are pioneering the modern science of anatomy with cadavers supplied by the “resurrection men” who prowl cemeteries for fresh graves. But their position becomes precarious with the appearance of two unexpected corpses: a boy with amputated limbs and a man without a face. When magistrate Sir John Fielding and his Bow Street Runners become involved, Barton’s students must clear their teacher’s name by uncovering the origin of the corpses—and their connection to Nathan Cullen, an aspiring poet recently arrived in London’s coffee houses whose work attracts the wrong kind of attention from publishers. Unfolding across a lovingly recreated panorama of early modern London, this tale by legendary Japanese novelist Hiroko Minagawa was awarded the 2012 Honkaku Mystery Grand Prize in Japan

The Resurrection Fireplace

The Resurrection Fireplace by Hiroko Minagawa

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book starts out rather slow, but it picks up at about 20% and from there, it is exciting and refreshing. I liked the history included in this book and thought the author did an excellent job of recreating London during the period the book is set in. The descriptions were sometimes a bit graphic, but that should well be expected with a book of this nature and subject matter.

I liked the characters a lot, and thought the mysteries were interesting and fun to work out. This is a decently long book, so it will give you a solid day or so of entertainment and would be a good one to bring along with you on a trip. I particularly liked the descriptions of the old books and the processes of binding that were done in those days. Makes mass market paperbacks look so sad by comparison.

Overall, I thought this was a wonderful book with a lot to keep the reader interested in it. I look forward to hearing the thoughts of others as word about this book spreads.

This review is based on a complimentary copy from the publisher, provided through Netgalley. All opinions are my own.

4 thoughts on “The Resurrection Fireplace by Hiroko Minagawa”

  1. Great review! I saw your review on LinkedIn and picked the book up. Wasn’t the right mood at the time though so found it difficult to follow. Like you said, it’s a bit dull and there are too many people in the first couple of pages. Will re-try later this month though!


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