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(Dr. Thomas Bond #1)

3.56  ·  Rating details ·  2,795 ratings  ·  441 reviews
"A compulsively readable story that starts as a conventional murder mystery and morphs, by degrees, into a horrifying supernatural thriller," The Guardian said of Mayhem.

A virtuoso fantasy writer, Sarah Pinborough has won numerous awards including the British Fantasy Award for Best Short Story. In Mayhem Pinborough turns her attention to one of the most baffling and noto
Hardcover, 305 pages
Published January 14th 2014 by Jo Fletcher Books (first published April 25th 2013)
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Average rating 3.56  · 
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Feb 19, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Mayhem by Sarah Pinborough is a 2014 Jo Fletcher Books publication.

The Torso murders seemed to coincide with the infamous Jack the Ripper case in 1887-1889. But, due to the media sensation the Ripper murders caused, the Thames River case seemed to go mostly unnoticed.

This book is loosely based on those real- life crimes, but offers a paranormal tint to the story that heightens the already heavy sense of evil, which was an element I wasn’t expecting.

So, while this is a historical mystery, it c
Magdalena aka A Bookaholic Swede
The story in Mayhem is about "The Thames Torso Murders of 1887-89" with a paranormal twist to it. I didn't know before I read Mayhem that Jack the Ripper wasn't the only killer on the lose at the time. Sarah Pinborough has taken real characters and used them in this book, which was a great move to make. Police Surgeon Dr. Thomas Bond who is the MC in this book worked on the case IRL.

I had forgotten what the book was about when I started to read it. I didn't even check up the book on GR to refres
Mar 12, 2014 rated it it was amazing
New book from Sarah Pinborough is always an event. And this was well wroth the wait. Although I've read plenty about Jack the Ripper murders, the Torso murders (subject of this book) have inexplicably eluded me. Now I know about them, albeit with Pinborough's awesome supernatural twist. Excellent pacing, book was tough to put down. Great descriptions, London is vividly dreary, bleak lives and brief opium dens escapes. Terrific blend of history, eastern european mythology and detective fiction, H ...more
Mogsy (MMOGC)
4.5 stars. Posted at:

Interestingly enough, well before this book came into my life, I'd happened to be browsing through the many publishing-related newsletters in my email inbox one day when a deliciously creepy animated gif banner in one of them caught my eye. In fact, it was an announcement for this very title, bearing the tag line:

"Jack the Ripper is terrorizing London. Now a new killer is stalking the streets, the victims' bodies are dismembered and
Christine PNW
Sep 02, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I rounded up from 3.5 stars.

I love books set in Victorian England and am fascinated by Jack the Ripper, so when I was looking for Halloween Bingo books, I decided to pull the trigger and buy this one. I'd been cover-coveting it for ages. I've never read anything by Sarah Pinborough, so I didn't really have any idea what to expect.

It definitely has supernatural elements to it, and is a twist on the standard vampire tale, involving a creature known as an upir. If you're a fan of the television sh
The plot wasn't that great but the writing makes up for all its flaws.
Give it a try if you love this genre. It's perfect for people who enjoy reality-based Victorian murder miseries that are also blessed with a dark and blood-chilling paranormal twist!
ᴥ Irena ᴥ

Mayhem is a perfect combination of the things I love and hate.

If you can get over multiple point of views/persons, unexplained and yet seemingly important comments about some of the characters, you will get a decent paranormal historical part mystery, part thriller.

I found constant point-of-view switching more than annoying, but even that would be tolerable if some weren't in the third and others in the first person. You don't even get all of them until part two which starts with a new first
Mar 29, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Being led by the hand through the sinister gas-lit streets of Victorian London by the marvellous Sarah Pinborough, this is masterful genre-defying thriller that will endlessly feed your curiosity and mess with your mind…in a good way! Blending together all the atmosphere of a city gripped by fear in the shadow of Jack The Ripper, Pinborough draws on another unsolved series of murders from the same period, the Thames Torso murders, and melds and manipulates aspects of both investigations with an ...more
Feb 21, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I can't remember where I saw the image, but I know I was very young and the drawing depicted a man with wild hair, cloak and top hat, brandishing a long knife and a demented smile. This was Jack the Ripper, my first boogeyman. It wasn't long before my fascination grew and it continues to this day, this crazed murderer who stalked the streets of London, taunted police with letters, and was never caught.

I've never read Sarah Pinborough before, but The Reckoning has been on my list for years. It wa
Nov 19, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2013
3.5 stars for story bumped down to 2.5 stars for "bad" writing/editing

I was conflicted about how to rate this book.

After the first hundred pages I was ready to give up. All the smiling was starting to make me frown. Seriously. Characters smile when they're happy, when they're sad, when they're angry, and even when they're tired. And sometimes...they smile twice in the same passage. See spoiler for examples (view spoiler)
Jon Recluse
May 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: horror
Pinborough raises the bar on historical thrillers with this engaging tale, spinning off the long forgotten Thames Torso murders, horrific crimes overshadowed by the predations of Jack the Ripper, to create a chillingly realistic tale of mystery and supernatural menace. Reads like a collaboration between Wilkie Collins and John Connolly. Excellent writing, characters that literally breathe, and a powerful sense of time and place make this novel a must read.

Highest recommendation.
Enter to win a copy of Mayhem here!

‘What I seek – the thing I seek – brings mayhem and wickedness in its wake, spreading it like this choking fog across the city. It runs in he water of the river and it will destroy men’s souls.'

It’s the late 1800′s and London is being terrorized by the murders by a man dubbed Jack the Ripper, although recent murders have succeeded in overshadowing even those horrific crimes. These new murders are gruesome and appalling. The victims are all women, they are all d
Liz Barnsley
A more beautiful looking book you would be hard put to find out there in the literary world at the moment - the cover art is stunning and it immediately entices you to dive right in. A brilliantly woven tale, "Mayhem" is set during the time of Jack the Ripper, but concerns a completely different set of murders. When a rotting torso is found in the vault of New Scotland Yard, we meet Dr Thomas Bond, Police Surgeon, drafted in to investigate from a medical standpoint, who quickly realises that som ...more
Mar 11, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: series
I loved how Sarah Pinborough seamlessly blends the London scenes of the Jack the Ripper time, alongside detective/police procedural, and supernatural forces. Her descriptions of the London streets, people, opium dens, working conditions, etc., are so real that it is all too easy to lose yourself in the flow. I felt as if I was walking alongside her characters, watching the events unfold around me.

One of the keys, for myself, in deciding upon a rating for a novel is characterization. Love them, o
On one hand, the way that Ms. Pinborough used real-life persons and used murders was totally different than what I used to read and it made for quite an interesting read. Apparently The Thames Torso murders that happened in 1887-1889 were as gruesome as the Whitechapel murders, conducted by Jack the Ripper within the same period. However, because no heads were found, and the bodies were heavily mutilated, the victims in Thames Torso cases could only marked as 'found dead' instead of being suspec ...more
This books looks at a little known series of crimes that were being committed in London at the same time as the Ripper murders. The Thames Torso Murders.

The book starts with the remains of a women being discovered where Scotland Yard is being built (this really did happen).

At first, the book appears to be a normal crime novel...then things take a twist into the dark and paranormal.

The main character is Dr Thomas Bond, who was a real person. Considered by many to be the first criminal profiler. H
Alice 🌙
4/5 ⭐️
I loooove anything to do with Jack the Ripper and Sarah Pinbrough is fast becoming one of my go to authors.
colleen the convivial curmudgeon

Ugh. Who know that a story about a supernatural serial killer, set in the time of Jack the Ripper's London, could be so godawfully boring?

For one, there was no suspense or thriller aspect. It read more like a procedural, of sorts, and not a particularly good one, at that. I mean, there wasn't even any doubt as to who the killer was, because the audience is out and out told, so there's no guessing, no mystery, no suspense.

The best thing this story has going for it is the idea of it. A story of
Enh, I think this may have been over hyped for me or I was expecting a bit more out of this book. I just never seemed to be able to get into the book and kept putting the book down in favor of other books. And then it just ended. I think I just wanted more out of this because it felt so promising but it just didn't feel like anything special. (And maybe it's because I've been reading Stephen King's IT)

I do think taking on the torso murders was something different; it was a nice juxtaposition aga
Feb 11, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014
The book Mayhem was difficult for me to enjoy and I only found it to be okay. I know it has gotten some wonderful reviews and ratings and I'm going to be a bit of an outsider with this review. But, I just could not get into the book. The book is divided into 3 parts. At the end of Part I, around the first 100 pages, I almost stopped reading the book. It was written as straight historical fiction and yes, the murders were gruesome and yes, all the investigators had a hard time coping with these c ...more
Reese Copeland
Mar 11, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Initially, this was a really tough book for me to get into. It just didn't "grab me". At times it seemed as though it was lost in details and that kind of dragged it down for me. It also seemed as though, at times, the Upir was so elusive, that it was almost not part of the store, but rather, a focus on the relationships between three men. Which, from that aspect was somewhat interesting. Towards the middle to three fourths way through the book, when it really seemed to pick up, it was tough to ...more
May 04, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I liked the dark victorian atmosphere of this book.
Jess ❈Harbinger of Blood-Soaked Rainbows❈
Not gonna lie....I want to read this because of that cover.
After watching The Alienist I've become a bit obsessed with Victorian forensic investigation. It's just fascinating how so much can be done without any of the usual modern techniques or knowledge. Mayhem fit the bill quite nicely. It had the usual characters like the opium addicted doctor and the by-the-book policeman but added something completely new to the genre with the addition of a paranormal element. This gave it a whole extra level of creepiness that I really enjoyed. I'm very pleased to ...more
Jan 10, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ooo this book was dark and macabre and I enjoyed it so much more than I had even hoped! Part mystery and part fantasy this book revolves around Dr. Thomas Bond in late 19th century London during the times of the Jack the Ripper murders. He is a coroner doctor involved in the police investigations and soon finds there’s something other worldly involved in the deaths he is studying. Additionally he’s addicted to opium, so that makes for a fun twist.

Also woven through this mystery are news clippin

Jo Fletcher Books is publisher to many good authors, including Tom Pollock, Snorri Kristjansson, and one Sarah Pinborough. Sarah is author to many dark stories, including her Dog Faced Gods horror series, as well as rewritten fairy tales, one being Poison (Snow White) and another being Beauty (Sleeping Beauty). I've yet to read any of her other work, so Mayhem was a first for me in a few ways. Prior to reading it, I hadn't really read any novels that could
Oct 24, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: those interested in Victorian era, Jack the Ripper, serial killings
Recommended to Katy by: Amazon Vine
Book Info: Genre: Historical fiction with supernatural elements/Horror
Reading Level: Adult
Recommended for: Those interested in Victorian times, Jack the Ripper, unsolved serial killings, Slavic myths and legends
Book Available: January 14, 2014 in hardcover and Kindle formats
Trigger Warnings: murder, mutilation, kidnapping, rape

My Thoughts: Several years ago I read Sarah Pinborough's debut novel The Hidden and was completely blown away. Unfortunately, this UK author doesn't always release her boo
Nov 26, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Someone is killing women and leaving their body parts. All except for the heads. Dr. Bond can not sleep from all the imagines of the murders. So he turns to opium. He then roams the streets at night. There is evil lurking in the dark of the night.

To be honest, it was not Jack the Ripper that drew my attention to this book and made me want to read it. It was the description of the Torso Killer that got me. I am a junkie for a good, well-written gory murder/serial killer story. You would not imag
May 16, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Took a while to get me hooked, but once I was it was hard to put down. There's several reasons why I picked this up, Jack the Ripper, Victorian London with it's peasoupers. I had heard of Kosminski, Abberline and the torso murders, even read a book about them. Ideal book to read in bed, or in front of a fire. ...more
The Thames Torso killer and Jack the Ripper are both murdering in London. And Doctor Thomas Bond discovers that there may be a lot more behind these crimes than he thought.

Very suspenseful and interesting story, told from multiple points of view. Enough facts woven throughout the story to make the fictional elements satisfying.

Dark and dirty and foreboding.
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Sarah Pinborough is the NYT bestselling and Sunday Times #1 Bestselling author of 'Behind Her Eyes' which has sold in over 25 territories thus far and will be shown as a six part drama on Netflix in 2020 and the Sunday Times Bestseller, 'Cross Her Heart'. She has also written books across a variety of genres including the YA thriller 13 Minutes (in development with Netflix). Her next novel 'Dead T ...more

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Dr. Thomas Bond (2 books)
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“Of course she was bloody found dead." Moore grumbled. "Some bastard cut off her head and her limbs. If she'd been found alive I would have been more than bloody surprised.” 2 likes
“Found dead. A verdict as useful as a fucking Bible in the Bluegate Brothel.” 1 likes
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