Title: Snifter of Death
Author: Chris Karlsen
Genre: Historical Suspense (With Romantic Elements)
Release Date: May 16, 2017
Hosted by: Buoni Amici Press, LLC.
The summer of 1889 was proving to be a strange one for Detective Inspector Rudyard Bloodstone and his partner.
They had a sexual pervert loose. The man didn’t actually harm women but threatened them at knife point, fondling them, and ultimately stealing their stockings.
Far more serious were the murders of influential men, which appeared random other than they were all killed by arsenic poison. Never had he and his partner had cases with so little workable evidence.
Also, the rivalry between him and his detective nemesis at London’s other police department was intensifying. That nemesis was the boxing champion of their department and looking to challenge Rudyard, who never trained as a boxer.
Besides Rudyard’s pride being at stake, and the pride of his station, his nemesis also had in his possession a photograph of the woman Rudyard cares very much for. The new lady in Rudyard’s life had captured his heart and he’d fight the devil himself to save her reputation.
The autopsy report and test results on the contents of the decanters were returned by midmorning the next day. Skinner had died of arsenic poisoning. The claret in the decanter was the same as in his stomach and both contained arsenic. The port did not.
“What the deuce kind of maniac do we have on our hands now?” Archie lamented.
“A strange one indeed.” And Ruddy meant it. “Shall we give Jameson the bad news?”
“Let’s get it over with.”
Jameson listened with a pained expression. The crease between his eyes deepened with each named similarity. When Ruddy finished, the Superintendent looked from Ruddy to Archie and back to Ruddy. “Is there no other way to look at these cases other than as connected?”
“We could. We can always take a different approach. Follow a different course of investigation but I think sooner or later we’d have to pursue this theory. If nothing else, to eliminate the possibility they’re related,” Ruddy said.
“I don’t like it. I don’t like it at all. The idea we may have a demented looney on the loose poisoning well-to-do businessmen curdles in me.” He fixed hard eyes on Ruddy as he made his objection known.
Ruddy had a response sitting on the tip of his tongue. He’d love to tell the Superintendent the nature of the case didn’t exactly set him doing a jig either.
“I’m beginning to think there’s something about you Bloodstone, that attracts these cases involving influential people. Somehow, someway while investigating the case I just know you’re going to overturn a rock and an ugly frog of information will pop out that has another influential person screaming like a banshee.” Jameson pointed a finger in Ruddy’s face. “I believe that. I truly do.” He turned to Archie. “I can feel it. The two of you. Get out.”
Back at their desks, Ruddy snatched his coat from the stand where he had carefully hung it. “I hope we do discover some toff involved up to his wealthy neck in these cases,” he said without bothering to lower his voice. “I hope it turns into a carbuncle on Jameson’s bum.”
“Shh,” Archie raised a finger to get Ruddy to quiet down. He’d drawn the attention of the other detectives who were listening with interest to the tirade.
“Let’s talk to Cross’s staff first. His residence is closest and on the way to Belgrave Square. If they don’t recognize Skinner as a friend or associate, we’ll move on and speak to Skinner’s family,” Ruddy said, changing the subject and putting on his coat.
“Good idea. I’m happy to get out of here for a while,” Archie said with a quick glance toward Jameson’s closed door.
I was born and raised in Chicago. My father was a history professor and my mother was, and is, a voracious reader. I grew up with a love of history and books.
My parents also love traveling, a passion they passed onto me. I wanted to see the places I read about, see the land and monuments from the time periods that fascinated me. I’ve had the good fortune to travel extensively throughout Europe, the Near East, and North Africa.
I am a retired police detective. I spent twenty-five years in law enforcement with two different agencies. My desire to write came in my early teens. After I retired, I decided to pursue that dream. I write three different series. My paranormal romance series is called, Knights in Time. My romantic thriller series is Dangerous Waters. The newest is The Bloodstone Series. Each series has a different setting and some cross time periods, which I find fun to write.
I currently live in the Pacific Northwest with my husband and five wild and crazy rescue dogs.