Last night at midnight our first ever competition here on Crime Fiction Lover closed, and today we can set off the fireworks and announce the winners. Congratulations go out to Alex Washoe and Kaarreenn AKA nneerrraakk (we’re going by their Twitter identities). They faced the challenge of inventing an ideal Victorian crime fiction character and posted details of that character, with our special hashtag #CFLxDEM, on Twitter.
The author DE Meredith who specialises in Victorian crime fiction judged the entries. Here are the characters our winners dreamed up:
@nneerraakk – Walter Gribble, vagrant, occasional pure collector, highly intelligent sociopathic, freelances as sadistic debt collector
@alexwashoe – Vivian Fen, beautiful Eurasian crime fighter who terrorizes the Victorian underground as the mysterious Dark Lotus.
Each of our lucky winners is being sent a signed, hardback copy of DE Meredith’s book Devoured, which is set in the 1850s and introduces her two Victorian sleuths Adolphus Hatton and Albert Roumande. The pair bring their 19th century brand of forensic science to bear when investigating the murder of one Lady Bessington, as well as the slayings of several young girls. As such, our lucky winners will be transported back to Victorian London as they read the book.
In addition to free signed copies, the author has committed to including the winners’ characters in the next book she writes. That’s definitely exciting news, as is the launch on 25 October of the second Hutton and Roumande story, The Devil’s Ribbon. If you like historical crime fiction, it’s definitely one to look out for. Watch for the review here on Crime Fiction Lover soon or, if you can’t wait, pre-order your copy below.
This competition was a lot of fun. Our thanks go out to DE Meredith for working on it with us and providing the prizes. We also send out huge admiration to everyone who took the time to enter, and big thank-yous to everyone who shared the competition with their friends on Twitter as well. We thought you’d also like to see the other entries, so here they are – all very imaginative and intriguing.
@alexwashoe – Professor Josephus Meir — Talmudic Scholar, practitioner of ancient memory techniques, early student of forensic sciences.
@shadowofajoke – Fingers Jones a petty thief who accidentally solves a major crime in the middle of robbing a place.
@BookBoutiqueuk – Esmerelda Groth kills her sister suffocating her witha dead ferret after finding her in passionate embrace with MrGroth
@fallinonabruise – Grenville Fairclough Lloyd, herbalist, seller of Lloyds pink pills. the Rohypnol of the 1850s
@LurigDramaCDall – Hannah Pendleton used the EmeraldRoom of her lodging house to entrap victims;exposure to arsenicvapour from wallpaper proving fatal
@kimbannerman – Sally McGundy: lady adventurer & raconteuse. They say she’s of a kidney with a monkey, but no puzzle has bested her.
@kirstylou29 – Alexandrina Victoria; who’s likely to suspect a lady named after the queen wearing a corset and carrying a ‘sewing kit’
@clarestubbs2 – Edwin Fairchild used an empty coffin to conceal himself. What could be better than catching the criminal at a victim’s funeral?
@clarestubbs2 – Uriah Ulysses always carried those pills. He was a healer who dealt with life’s complications his way. No-one was safe.
@19thcenturystuf – Prudence Loveday placed the poison-filled phials under her clothes in the suitcase. No one ever. suspected a modest governess.
@JChasM – With each crime he investigated Inspector Preston Dawes increasingly questioned the religious tenants upon which he’d been raised.
@lucy_hunt – Rich (and cunning) young daughter of an aristocrat who tries to frame an innocent maid for a crime she didn’t commit.
What a great cast of Victorian characters – you can almost picture them in a story all their own… or even in a boardgame.