Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Broken Token (Richard Nottingham, #1)” as Want to Read:
The Broken Token (Richard Nottingham, #1)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Broken Token (Richard Nottingham #1)

3.66  ·  Rating details ·  325 Ratings  ·  43 Reviews
When Richard Nottingham, Constable of Leeds, discovers his former housemaid murdered in a particularly sickening manner, his professional and personal lives move perilously close. Circumstances conspire against him, and more murders follow. Soon the city fathers cast doubt on his capability, and he is forced to seek help from an unsavory source. Not only does the murder in ...more
Paperback, 269 pages
Published October 13th 2010 by Creme de La Crime (first published June 29th 2010)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Broken Token, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Broken Token

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
Rating details
Sort: Default
Kris - My Novelesque Life
Oct 20, 2017 rated it really liked it
Christy Lockstein
Dec 28, 2010 rated it it was amazing
The Broken Token by Chris Nickson is the first book in a new historical mystery series starring Richard Nottingham, the sheriff of Leeds, England in 1731. Nottingham is awakened early one morning by the discovery of a pair of murder victims who have been posed rather shockingly. One is an itinerant pastor who had been stirring up controversy with his preaching. The other just happens to be Nottingham's former serving girl, Pamela, who had turned to prostitution after the death of her husband. Pa ...more
Jun 18, 2011 rated it did not like it
Shelves: book-club
I read this book as the May read for the Walk Cafe Book Club in Nottingham. I took this away with me and read it quickly in a couple of days. I found the characters quite one dimensional, and the storyline was cliched. It kept my interest long enough to get to the end of the book, but it was a relief once it was over.
Nancy McLaughlin
Jul 17, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Dark & brooding

I was left thanking the powers that be that I was not poor in Leeds @ the time of the story. Great mystery under the horrifying poverty. Won't be able to shake this book off for a while.
Apr 14, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: book-club
For The Walk Cafe Book Club (May meeting) in Nottingham on May 26th.

Really enjoyed this novel. I couldn't put it down until I found out who the killer was. I hadn't heard of 'Creme de la Crime' before, looks like they publish a variety of crime novels.
Dec 05, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An excellent series opener set in 1730s Leeds. The mystery is enhanced by a cast of well-rounded characters and evocative period detail.
Nov 06, 2017 rated it liked it
This was an easy quick read but quite atmospheric with it - really helps you to visualise Leeds in the 1730s. Nottingham is a likeable character although I found Sedgwick, his deputy, the more interesting of the two.
Aug 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Really enjoyed this book despite some similarity to other dectective novels set in this time period. Will read the next one for sure.
Sep 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
Good mystery. I like both pace and plot. Will read all the books in the series.
What a delightful discovery. This book was far better than I expected it to be. Having never heard of the author, the books synopsis piqued my interest. It started out well and I continued to read on. I was soon engrossed in the story as more characters came into play. The side story involving John Sedgewick only enhanced the story. I kept asking myself why was Annie so harsh and abrupt with him. As each new character made their appearance in the story, my interest increased. I listened to this ...more
Apr 27, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed
My Review
The Broken Token is the first book in the Richard Nottingham Mystery Series, Richard Nottingham is The Constable of Leeds, the year is 1731.
There's a lot on this mans plate right now, apart from the never ending thieving, and drunken brawling, the officials have been on his back to find and arrest a "cut purse", a cunning and successful thief who had relieved many a gent of his money filled purse. Then came the first of the murders!

The first few years of Richard Nottinghams life were sp
Jan 16, 2012 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Julie Limeburn
I was attracted to read this crime novel partly because it is set in Leeds where I live, but in 1730 rather than 2012, and partly because the author had chosen to launch the third in the series in Leeds Central Library in order to support the excellent library system here.

With an excellent map to orientate the 21st century reader back into 18th century Leeds, Chris Nickson paints an engrossing portrait of a rapidly growing town from the viewpoint of Richard Nottingham, the Constable of the City
May 29, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Those who like historical whodunnits.
Recommended to Sharon4 by: Amazon
I enjoyed this novel, all the more so because I grew up in Leeds and lived on Marsh Lane for a while, so my connection with the area is quite intimate. It gave me an odd feeling to read about places I know so well and apparently don't know that well at all. I'd often wondered where the market was held before Kirkgate market was built and now I know! It's also intriguing to think of Chapeltown as barely part of Leeds at all and places like Moortown and Alwoodley definitely beyond its boundaries. ...more
Jan 31, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
*Satisfied Sigh* Another terrific Chris Nickson read about Richard Nottingham in early 18c Leeds, which had the mystery spill out into a nearby small town Chapel Allerton, now a part of city of Leeds. The author knows his West Yorkshire history and how to spin a compelling narrative.

Nottingham and his Deputy Constable Sedgewick and their families and acquaintances are vibrant characters with believable actions and emotions. My only wish is to have read the series from beginning to end so I would
Aug 28, 2016 rated it really liked it
It has a map! I love maps!

It also has an interesting plot and sympathetic characters.

Historical Leeds 1700's is suffering from pick pockets, cut purses and someone who is murdering women of the night and their escorts.

Unfortunately for our Constable, he knows the first pair of victims and is determined to bring justice to them and their relatives and friends.

Life is very hard during this period of time, and the details are sprinkled heavily into the plot.

At it's essence this is a police procedur
I read this super quickly after going through peoples wishlists who are attending the Leeds UnCon next month and realising I need to read about 80 pages per day if I want to finish all the books I've got that others want! It was a super easy read, interesting, and I even had to look up what small beer was, so I learned something new :D I'm also amazed at how little sleep characters in books seem to need to function, I'm sure if I were getting as little sleep as the 2 main characters were I'd be ...more
Dec 27, 2010 rated it liked it
first novel by this historian from Leeds. Takes place in 1731 and is about the constable trying to solve 6 related murders, plus his 16 year old daughter is doing the teen thing and wants to be a writer, which is a fairly impossible dream for a woman in 18th century England. There is some good atmosphere including architecture, dress, food, and business, and the characters are ok, but maybe next book will be better. From publisher Creme de la Crime, they publish UK written mysteries by first tim ...more
May 04, 2011 rated it really liked it
Recommended to jazz-ee2 by: Walk Cafe Book Club
Shelves: ebook
Reading this for a new bookclub I will be trying out with Rita:

As this is part of the book group discussion I will leave my full review in private notes until after the discussion.

"...I also learnt some new words such as 'tup' and 'nightsoil', which is always good.

The author will be at the book club discussion, The Walk Cafe 26 May at 7pm, and I am looking forward both to meeting the author and the associated discussion."
Miranda Barnett
This book did manage to maintain my interest in the mystery presented. However, the element of mystery was rather bland. A good mystery will leave the reader guessing the whole way through: Who killed the victim? Was it her? Was it him? No, it couldn't be him. Was it that guy? And so on. But this book failed to deliver on that point. For one, it was impossible to guess who it was and the narrative was too straight-forward that it didn't contain any twists or turns that are the definition of a go ...more
Janette Jones
May 28, 2011 rated it really liked it
I don't usually read crime but from the very first page I was riveted to this story of a man's quest to find a serial killer. The flow of text leaves you unable to put this down and his description of characters gives you enough freedom as a reader to allow your imagination to run riot. This book was a first in two ways - one it has encouraged me to read more crime and two it was the first one that I read electronically.
Patricia O'Sullivan
Jul 16, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I read the third book in the series first, The Constant Lovers, and liked it so much I bought books one and two. I enjoy Nickson's characters - he does a great job of making them accessible even though the story is set in the early 18th century. I'm not a huge mystery fan, so the predictability of the mystery in this novel didn't bother me. I'm in it for Nickson's historical settings and his wonderful characters.
Francis Mulhern
Sep 06, 2016 rated it liked it
Good story which moved quickly. Characters were strong. Plot wsa OK, a few attempted twists and turns and blind alleys which were quite good.
Enjoyable book - moved on to the next one.
Jun 29, 2013 rated it it was ok
The first novel by an author who has written lots of non-fiction over 30 years or so. Standard writing,competent but not thrilling. The thing that kept me reading was that it was set in Leeds and I know the area he was writing about. He used a very small area to focus on in Leeds though as the story was set in the taverns and surrounding area of the centre as we know it today.

Will probably try the second novel in this series but not rushing to grab it from the shelves.
Apr 19, 2014 rated it liked it
I love historical novels, and Chris Nickson does a wonderful job of immersing you in 18th century Leeds. It is a fairly straightforward mystery, and a bit predictable. This is the first in the Richard Nottingham series and the weakest, in my opinion. The characters were a little flat, but Nickson continues to develop them as the series progresses. His plots get better also in subsequent books. I would definitely recommend reading these books in order.
Apr 01, 2013 rated it it was amazing
What a fun mystery! I loved the characters and hearing about how people lived in the 1700's. The interplay and connections between people were so conducive to living in a small town especially without modern technology. I had to get the book through the state of Michigan because it was not available locally. I am so glad I did.
Trudy Pomerantz
Feb 01, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery
I liked the main characters in the book and the way in which the author draws them. The plot itself was okay though the murderer being a psycho minister was a little cheap. Obligatory sex scene was particularly gratuitous.
Jan 07, 2011 rated it it was amazing
The Broken Token is an almost cinematic immersion in the day to day life of the 18th century. The plot is threaded with intricacies which are woven together right at the very end in a cataclysmic twist that left me delighted and devastated.
Kept me interested. Main criticism is the point of view switched abruptly and I had trouble following. Perhaps the formatting in the ebook was to culprit. I liked the characters and it kept me guessing.
Casual Reader
Dec 05, 2011 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this book. It is set in Leeds where I am currently living. It's always nice to recognise areas and streets. Well written book. Very good characterisation. I believed in the story and the characters.
May 24, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Simply excellent! Full review pending after appearance at Paperbackswap Mystery Blog)
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Death in the Dark Walk (John Rawlings, #1)
  • A Fete Worse Than Death (Jack Haldean Murder Mystery #1)
  • The King's Evil (Christopher Redmayne, #1)
  • Under the Dragon's Tail (Detective Murdoch, #2)
  • The Inspector's Daughter (Rose McQuinn, #1)
  • Baudelaire's Revenge
  • Broken Music
  • The Rhetoric of Death
  • Shadow of the Serpent (Inspector McLevy, #1)
  • My Lady Judge (Burren Mysteries, #1)
  • Goodnight Sweet Prince (Lord Francis Powerscourt, #1)
  • Cursed in the Act (Bram Stoker Mystery #1)
  • The Keeper of Secrets (Tobias Campion, #1)
  • Not Bad for a Bad Lad
  • The Salton Killings (Chief Inspector Woodend, #1)
  • The Detective Branch (A Pyke Mystery, #4)
  • Betrayers (Nameless Detective, #34)
  • I, Claudia (Claudia Seferius, #1)
I'm a novelist and music journalist, the author of the six Richard Nottingham series of crime novels, sets in 1730s Leeds. I'm also the author of audiobook/ebooks Emerald City and West Seattle Blues, set in the 1980s Seattle music scene, and The Crooked Spire, which takes place in Chesterfield in 1361.

I've also written the Tom Harper mysteries, set in Leeds in the 1890s - Gods of Gold and, coming
More about Chris Nickson...

Other Books in the Series

Richard Nottingham (6 books)
  • Cold Cruel Winter (Richard Nottingham, #2)
  • The Constant Lovers (Richard Nottingham, #3)
  • Come the Fear (Richard Nottingham, #4)
  • At The Dying of The Year (Richard Nottingham, #5)
  • Fair and Tender Ladies (Richard Nottingham, #6)