blog tour, books, reviews

Blog Tour: The Crown Agent – Stephen O’Rourke*

A ship adrift, all hands dead. A lighthouse keeper murdered in the night.

The Crown needs a man to find the truth. Doctor Mungo Lyon, his reputation tarnished by the Burke & Hare scandal, and forbidden to practise as a surgeon, is the wrong man.

A lighthouse keeper murdered in the night.

The Crown needs a man to find the truth. Doctor Mungo Lyon, his reputation tarnished by the Burke & Hare scandal, and forbidden to practise as a surgeon, is the wrong man.

That’s exactly why the Crown chose him.

Stephen O’Rourke is an advocate and a Member of the Institute of Chartered Arbitrators. He formerly wrote a regular column for

He formerly wrote a regular column for The Scotsman and has written for The Guardian, Caledonian Mercury and Think Scotland websites.

In 2012 he won a short story competition run by The Daily Telegraph, which proved to be the basis for The Crown Agent.

My thoughts:

This was a really enjoyable historical thriller inspired partly by real events and people. It features a cameo from Hare of Burke & Hare fame, which roots it in reality, a dark time in Edinburgh’s past and one that allows the invented Doctor Lyon to become the titular agent.

Struck off for his relationship to the surgeons at the heart of the scandal, he’s in the right place at the right time as far as the Crown, in the figure of the Lord Advocate, and sent to look into the events causing concern. Murder, intrigue, theft, and whiskey.

Tremendously fun and utterly gripping, this is a fantastic debut novel and introduces a new reluctant hero in Mungo Lyon (what a name too!) set to carry on investigating dark deeds with the assistance of the wily Mister Dervil.

*I was kindly gifted a copy of this book in exchange for taking part in the blog tour but all opinions remain my own.

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