The Women of Blackmouth Street

“Compelling, original and brilliantly disturbing.” Kate Weinberg, author of The Truants.

A gifted psychologist is forced to hunt a serial killer or risk having a dark chapter of her past exposed—but her mission may mark her as the next victim…

$17.99$27.99

1890’s London. Strong-willed Georgia Buchanan, a mind doctor and heiress, spends her time with the mad, the bad, and devils incarnate, armed only with her expert understanding of the human psyche.

But when her young, high-profile patient unexpectedly commits suicide, Georgia leaves Boston under a cloud of guilt. Lured to London’s notorious Bedlam asylum, she’s trapped by a vengeful detective and a dangerous anarchist—who know too much about her—into tracking a serial killer of women in the city’s East End.

As Georgia struggles to prevent more women from meeting a violent end, her own secrets and closest ties are stripped bare… With her Harvard mentor, William James, and his sister. With her wealthy, scandalous father. With a troubled patient. All the while the city’s streets reel with carnage and social unrest. Alone and questioning her abilities as the killer closes in, Georgia has one last chance to save the innocent before she confronts the most devastating truth yet.

A shocking, fast-paced period thriller, The Women of Blackmouth Street conjures a lush and gritty world of psychological profiling, political upheaval, and women on the edge of madness.

4.5
Based on 36 Reviews
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Mamachama
March 14, 2022

I began this book and read through quickly at first, the story unfolds rapidly and the details of London in the late 1800’s lend such realism. Such a dark and gritty place, perfect for the subject at hand, murder, foul murder. I slowed down however, as some of the details of the setting are so ornate I wanted to take my time. The protagonist is an educated woman with secrets of her own, navigating not only the dirty streets but the labyrinthine circumstances wherein she has been placed. Don’t want to give anything away, I do recommend this book to those that enjoy this particular period, or those who simply like a good, even if disturbing, yarn.

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Saralyn Richard
January 27, 2022

History, mystery, twists & turns, and powerful prose in every chapter. This atmospheric novel grabbed me by the shoulders and wouldn’t let go until the very last page. Even now, I can’t stop thinking about Georgia Buchanan and the daunting challenges I faced while in her shoes. I was in the mood for a gripping, complicated story, and this book exceeded expectations.

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Roxx Tarantini
January 27, 2022

Georgia Buchanan has made an error in treatment. As a result, a killer has been loosed on an unsuspecting city. Now she must rectify that error before too much more damage is done. Can she do it? Sutton’s story is not for the faint of heart. There are no clear-cut black and white areas, only morose greys. Here is an untenable, almost irredeemable situation that will have your heart in your mouth as you race to the final resolution. But you won’t stop reading either – you won’t be able to put it down. [I was fortunate to receive an Advanced Reader Copy of the book from the author via BookSirens, with no obligation to review. All opinions expressed herein are given freely and are entirely my own.]

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Loretta Miles Tollefson
January 13, 2022

This is a fascinating mystery due to the atmosphere it conveys. There’s almost a dreamlike quality to it, as if the narrator is having trouble functioning in the world, understanding what she’s seeing and experiencing. Her mind is sometimes as occluded as the London fog. This serves to suck in the reader in a way that I wouldn’t have thought possible. So this atmosphere makes the book unusual. However, when it comes to the twists and turns every good mystery should contain, it delivers in spades. The ending was a complete surprise. I received this advance copy for free and I’m glad I read it–it was definitely worth my time.

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HG
January 5, 2022

I received an advance review copy for free, and I am leaving this review voluntarily. A slight retelling of Jack the Ripper, this story had potential, but there were many aspects I found distracting and tedious. Thea Sutton is a good writer and describes things very well. I am interested to see more from her in the future. However, when it comes down to it, I didn’t like Georgia Buchanan. She had a lot of issues in her personal life and continued to make choices that were very unwise given the circumstances and her background. The most interesting character was the red herring. I wish the book had been clearer jumping between Georgia’s flashbacks and real time. Give me a chapter heading or something. Some of the word choice seemed pretentious and unnecessary. It was very distracting. I was glad to be reading the book on my Kindle so I could look up words in real time. The villain was obvious when I read about 50% of the book… but I still had 50% to go! (With Georgia’s psych training, she should have pieced it together a lot faster, also). This book would have benefited by being at least 25% shorter and more concise.

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C.P.H
January 2, 2022

When I received Thea Sutton’s beautiful book,I was immediately drawn to the cover and wondered where the arched doorway would lead me in the author’s Victorian London streets. Thea Sutton tells a fast paced story that engages the reader from the beginning to a very surprising ending. The research,story telling,descriptions,and the character development are beautifully rendered. As the intelligent,curious and ahead of her time Georgia Buchanan leads her reader through the streets in her pursuit of finding the slayer of women ,the reader is met by grizzly scenes that are difficult to read as the author’s descriptions are written with such intensity that she creates an immediate visual reaction from this reader. If you are an enthusiast of historical thrillers and mysteries you will want to read The Women of Blackmouth Street.

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Bookworm13
December 30, 2021

This is an evocative and engaging thriller that kept me up late at night because I had to finish it! The writing and character development are well done, and the protagonist impressed me, as she was different than what I was expecting. The Jack the Ripper vibes also helped with the setting. I highly recommend it! I received an advance review copy for free, and I am leaving this review voluntarily.

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Holly Morris
December 9, 2021

This book transported me to far a away place and a time I know nothing about. And yet, I could completely relate to Georgia Buchanan and her struggles. Loved the twists and turns. I am waiting for more from Thea Sutton!

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Mimi S.
December 9, 2021

The Women of Blackmouth Street is an intense, character-driven murder mystery that is atmospheric, cinematic, and has the attention to detail that makes the streets, the smells, the sensations, and the lives of the high and low dwellers of late 19th century London come to life. The story’s heroine is simultaneously brazen and vulnerable, with all the quirks, demons, desires, hurts, failures, and victories that make her real and compelling. There’s plenty of terrifying moments, gore, and plot twists to keep murder mystery fans turning the pages and a clear eyed take on human drama that captivates the reader and makes this well-researched work of historical fiction feel contemporary. Highly recommended.

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Louis Capecci
December 8, 2021

This book transports you to another time, and the language and descriptions used to do that are beautifully done, adding to the drama and tension of the story. After setting the stage and slowly introducing the characters, we’re taken on a whirlwind of events. I loved that it made me read the last pages of the book with high anticipation as I turned each page. The “who done it” wasn’t revealed until the very end and completely blew me away. A really fun read!

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Tami Spry
December 8, 2021

Sutton’s work is captivating.  From gorgeous sentence structure to mesmerizing plot lines, she puts the reader into the mind of a complex ethically conflicted heroine. Even the most seasoned detective story reader will be challenged to follow Sutton’s fast moving plot twists and turns. This is a literature lover’s book.  Hunker down with The Women of Blackmouth Street for the winter, or lay in the sun for a great summer read.

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Erica Zack
December 8, 2021

As an avid reader of historical fiction, I wholeheartedly recommend The Women of Blackmouth Street. Thea Sutton has crafted an intellectually engaging thriller that challenged and satisfied. Looking forward to more in this series!

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Samantha
November 24, 2021

Set in Victorian London, Georgia Buchanan, a brilliant alienist must figure out who is committing these grotesque ripper like murders, before more occur. Thea Sutton has done an amazing job with this dark historical thriller. I could not put it down!! ** Disclaimer ** I received an advance review copy for free, and I am leaving this review voluntarily.

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B.L.
November 8, 2021

I was interested in reading a historical mystery that involved an alienist and the psychology of the time, but there was too little of that and too much blood and gore for my taste. The story moved slowly at the beginning and was a little confusing, but I kept reading as regards motivations of the main characters. I thought I had just missed something obvious since it was well written and very clever. About 15% into the book it became more interesting to me as the main character described her association with William James and his sister Alice. I really was interested in reading more of that, and of her experience in Paris with Charcot. That would have been fascinating to me. However, at about the 60% point, the detailed descriptions of filth and mutilation returned. While I dislike reading about murder and mutilation I kept reading as from the beginning I was expecting that the manner in which the murders took place provided clues about the identity and psychological makeup of the murderer. However, the blood, gore, and details of mutilation are what I remember most.. It is well written since it was able to evoke in me such vivid imagery, so it may be a good read for others, but I just don’t find horror of this kind enjoyable.. I received an advance review copy for free, and I am leaving this review voluntarily.

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Gail Johnson
November 6, 2021

A strong woman, not entirely likeable. A cast of characters not very likeable, woven together in a dance of darkness where everyone is manipulative and manipulated. A journey into the minds of the mad or maybe not quite mad. Intricately written, well researched that moves more quickly than one would expect. I was drawn in and could not put it down. Certainly not a ‘light’ read but so intriguing. A book that draws on human nature, the ‘inner’ self and impressive stamina. So glad that I took a leap into this book.

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Jean Curran
October 22, 2021

An intriguing book, intricately plotted. It kept me guessing and speculating until the very end… even when I thought all was revealed there was more! The atmospheric London settings of roiling, squalid slums, chaotic Bedlam and genteel homes, where happy family lives are merely a veneer disguising far darker emotions, complemented the plot and characters perfectly and are testament to the author’s diligent research. I received an advance review copy for free, and I am leaving this review voluntarily.

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Shirley Schwartz
October 15, 2021

This is a very well-written book. It must have been well-written in order for me to feel compelled to finish reading it. The book is not to my taste and is not in any genre that I usually read. It is definitely a horror story and I suppose well=timed for me to read around Hallowe’en. I was given the chance to read the book as an early release book, and I would like to thank the publisher and Thea Sutton for giving me the chance to read it. The book is set in 1890’s London, and it tells the story of a young woman who is a trained psychologist, or alienist as they called them in this day. Georgia Buchanan has fled Boston for London in order to get away from a professional mistake that she had made while practicing her type of medicine. But in Georgia’s case, she has jumped from the frying pan to the fire as there is a particularly gruesome killer roaming the streets of the East End and killing and mutilating prostitutes in the area. In her efforts to try to save innocent women’s lives, she makes enemies of some very important people and puts herself in grave danger. There are lots of very graphic descriptions within the book, and I will admit that I did skim over some of them, but I did read the book in its entirety. Ms. Sutton’s descriptions of what life was like on these impoverished streets is very colourful and realistic. It sometimes made me cringe with horror as I saw how people did live back in this era. There are lots of twists and turns and red herrings that will keep you guessing as you read the book. If you enjoy this type of historical psychological mystery, this book may be for you. For me, it was too graphic and I couldn’t enjoy it because of that. Even so, I couldn’t help but admire Ms. Sutton’s writing skills. Her characters are real and her scenes are vivid. The parts of the story that occur in Bedlam come to mind the most when I think about the vividness of her writing.

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WOR
October 13, 2021

What an exciting read! So descriptive and I could easily see this being turned into a film or television series. Definitely had me anxious but in that good way when you’re really into a book. I’d love to see more from this author!!

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Kirsten Straccamoro
October 12, 2021

Incredibly clever, compelling, and fast-paced. The subject matter was already unlike anything I’ve read set in this era, and brilliantly executed. You will fall in love with the protagonist Georgia Buchanan from the moment you start. The story is captivatingly disturbing from beginning to end and will keep you guessing until the very last page.

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Patricia L. Sands
October 3, 2021

Thea Sutton has applied her immeasurable literary skills to create one of the most unusual stories I have read in a long time. Set in Victorian London in the 1890’s, this tale is so richly described it takes the reader onto dark and dangerous streets feeling like we truly are there. All senses are on alert. Alienist Georgia Buchanan is a woman ahead of her time. Intelligent, independent and gutsy, she is a woman on a mission. Some details are so expertly depicted I had to close my eyes and take a moment before continuing. This highly addictive, dark, atmospheric thriller leads to a stunning conclusion that I did not see coming. Sutton’s exquisite writing demands we pay attention to every detail and in the end we are so very pleased to have done so. Hopefully this is the beginning of a Georgia Buchanan series.

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Jeannine D.
October 2, 2021

I read an ARC copy of this novel through BookSirens. After her young patient commits suicide, alienist Georgia Buchanan flees to London to leave the scandal behind her in Boston. She may have crossed an ocean, but she hasn’t outrun her troubles. Summoned to Bedlam in the middle of the night to prevent a woman’s death, she finds nothing amiss at the asylum, but London’s Assistant Commissioner of Police, Major Arthur Griffith, intercepts her and demands her assistance in identifying a serial murderer. Almost immediately after she declines the request, they are joined by Charles Knight, the publisher of a London newspaper, who insists she does not help the Commissioner. Both men threaten her with publication of photos of the scandal she feels responsible for and that would destroy both her and her father’s reputation. With no clue who sent the original summons or which man to trust, if either of them, Georgia finds herself in the middle of the Ripper murders in London’s East End. When Georgia is commanded to indict a man who is clearly innocent and more women die, she becomes certain of only one thing: she must find the real killer while trusting no one. I feel like I’ve read or watched a lot of fiction based on the Ripper murders lately and almost didn’t download this novel because of that. If I’d passed it by, it would have been a shame, because The Women of Blackmouth Street has something the other similar novels/shows didn’t: tension. From the first paragraph, I was drawn into this story and needed to know what happened next. I’ve referenced The 7 ½ Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle before and when I pick up a mystery or thriller, I’m hoping for a story that good. This one delivered. The historic details are on point, the sensory details put the reader smack in the middle of dank, 1890s London, and the plot twists kept me guessing all the way through. I will admit, I guessed the actual killer before the end (although I loved the spin the author gave to the world’s oldest cold case) but the subplots twisting through the novel took me by surprise when they were tied up. Since I’m unable to read without mentally critiquing, my reviews tend to be harder than if I were just reading for pleasure. But this work was so gripping, I happily ignored the fact it began with a dream prologue. In fact, Sutton’s prose was so good, I found myself jotting down notes for future reference. This story raised the bar on what I’ll use to compare other similar novels.

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William de Rham
October 2, 2021

I found “The Women of Blackmouth Street” to be an interesting yet challenging novel, Gothic in style and based, in part, on the Whitechapel/Jack the Ripper murders of the late 19th Century. The year is 1891. Georgia Buchannan, daughter of a wealthy American Industrialist and a trained alienist (mental health practitioner), has come to London fresh on the heels of a scandal involving her practice in Boston. A serial killer stalks the East End, disemboweling “actresses” and causing panic, social unrest, and even rioting amongst the poor. The police want Georgia to assist in their inquiries and confirm the guilt of a madman they currently have in custody—a madman Georgia determines cannot be guilty. A publisher and an anarchist want Georgia to stay off the case. Everyone is threatening Georgia with ruin if she refuses to accede to their demands. Georgia is determined to solve the murders. Georgia herself is a complex character. A professional during times that were not friendly to professional women, she is strong, focused, prickly at times, and can be seen as humorless, lacking charm, and somewhat arrogant. Then again, others may find her inestimably admirable. At odds with her father, who initially encouraged her intellectual pursuits but would now prefer she engage in more traditional activities, she smokes, drinks whiskey, and even finds benefit from the occasional cocaine lozenge. Friends with the James family (famous author Henry and siblings William and Alice), she has little interest in conformity but has been made secretly vulnerable by what happened back in Boston. I am not very familiar with the London of the 1890s. But it seemed to me that author Thea Sutton did a very good job researching the period. Her writing is complex and seems evocative of the times. The vocabulary is high-level (I went to the dictionary on more than one occasion) and there’s liberal use of metaphor, simile, sentences abounding with descriptive clauses, and other literary devices. Readers unprepared to expend a fair amount of effort on this novel will probably not get much past the beginning. Conversely, those who enjoy Charles Dickens, Henry James, Sherlock Holmes, Late 19th Century/Victorian England, and/or the “Ripper Murders” may well find something to become absorbed in and enjoy. My thanks to the author, the publisher, and BookSirens for providing me with a free ARC. I am leaving this review voluntarily.

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Gary Paterson
October 1, 2021

My husband calls me “Mr. Plotnik.” Decades of reading and watching mysteries have given me the capability to see a plot twist several chapters beforehand. (Unless “They all did it.”) “The Women of Blackmouth Street,” however, led me on a (very!) merry chase. If you like a merry chase, here you go. My own sleuthing was woefully – um, inadequate here. The twists are surprising and intriguing, which made me need to turn the pages all the quicker. Don’t start reading in the evening unless you don’t have to get up early the next day. While there are a lot of societal insights and fascinating period language, I was too caught up (inaccurately – which made it fun, too) in the mysteries to give them the attention I wanted to. My second reading will be at a slower pace so that I can enjoy all the wealth of this wonderful adventure. A HIGHLY recommended novel!

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Laurel Goddard Thomas
September 29, 2021

This is an excellent read that requires some patience in the early chapters, but in the end is well worth the effort! Set against a backdrop of late Victorian England, “The Women of Blackmouth St.,” is an engrossing tale of murder, blackmail and revenge that also exposes some of the darkest social issues of the time with gritty clarity. It is a novel that takes the reader well beyond the typical thriller genre. Intelligently written and well-crafted, the plot seemingly twists off course at times only to have Sutton artfully bring us back all while building spine tingling momentum as we push on toward the stunning conclusion. This is a book the reader won’t be able to just put down and turn out the lights! Possessing education, wealth and beauty Georgia Buchanan is a complex character who lives on her own terms, refusing to accept the societal limitations placed on women at the time. In spite of or because of her independence she is unwillingly dragged into a compelling story whose relevancy reaches across history to resonate with women today. I hope we will see more of Georgia in future stories from this talented author!

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Brian Liddy
September 29, 2021

If you’re looking for a book that combines the origins of CSI (Crime Scene Investigations) with psychological profiling of a serial killer, a smart and complicated heroine, and intelligent elevated writing, then I can recommend The Women of Blackmouth Street. Being a fan of William James, Harvard’s father of American psychology and philosophy, I was surprised to find this related novel set in the 1890’s streets of London (a city of which I’ve lived) that incorporates historical details that are so absorbing alongside a fictional mystery that keeps providing twists and turns. The protagonist, Georgia Buchanan, serves as a strong female sleuth invading the twisted world of men, detectives, doctors, and killers by not only braving this dangerous society, but thriving through demonstrating she’s the smartest person in the room. As we follow her hunt for a killer through the dark streets of East End horror, we learn that she’s barely hanging on to her own secrets, reality, and her own life.

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