The Fiend in Human by John M. Gray
Edmund Whitty, a dissolute journalist, writes columns on grisly crimes and the latest public hangings for The Falcon, a muckraking tabloid in Victorian London. Whitty is addicted to a variety of potions: gin, snuff, laudanum, and Acker's Chlorodine (opium, marijuana, and cocaine in alcohol). His latest series focuses on William Ryan, whom he has dubbed Chokee Bill: murderer of five women, lover of the stately Mrs. Marlowe, and presently an inmate in Coldbath Fields prison awaiting his appointment with the noose. But when murders continue in Chokee Bill's signature style, Whitty must return to the streets to investigate.
Random House Canada, 2003.
ISBN: 9780679311737. 352 pp.
Hardcover. Very good in a very good jacket.