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People of Abandoned Character

3.90  ·  Rating details ·  326 ratings  ·  148 reviews
Marry in haste . . . Murder at leisure?

London, 1888: Susannah rushes into marriage to a young and wealthy surgeon. After a passionate honeymoon, she returns home with her new husband wrapped around her little finger. But then everything changes.

Thomas's behavior becomes increasingly volatile and violent. He stays out all night, returning home bloodied and full of secrets.
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Hardcover, 432 pages
Published October 1st 2020
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Average rating 3.90  · 
Rating details
 ·  326 ratings  ·  148 reviews


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Pat (not getting friend updates currently)
I had no idea what to expect from this but, wow, for a debut novel in a genre I rarely read, kudos to the author for this book. Susannah Chapman, a plain woman with few prospects, has been trapped caring for her ailing grandmother for years. When granny finally expires Susannah, aged 27, is finally free to pursue a career in nursing to provide her with a basic living. She moves to London and qualifies as a nurse but then she meets the dashing and charming surgeon, Dr Thomas Lancaster. The doctor ...more
Miriam Smith (A Mother’s Musings)
Clare Whitfield’s, “People of Abandoned Character” was one of the easiest five stars I’ve ever awarded to a book. Victorian London, a unique take on Jack the Ripper and an atmospheric location with descriptions the best I’ve read, I could have kept reading this for days, with every single page keeping me entertained.
“Susannah, a nurse at The London hospital, rushes into marriage with a young and wealthy surgeon Thomas Lancaster. After a passionate honeymoon, they return home to Chelsea but ever
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Rob
Sep 09, 2020 rated it really liked it
A historical mystery published 2020
A debut novel from Clare Whitfield and what a debut it turned out to be.
This is a warts and all depiction of what life was like in the East End of London in the late 1800s.
In the 1800s London was the epicentre on the financial, military and political world. Yet for all it’s dominating power the life for the denizens of London’s east end was appalling. The filth, the squaller, the venereal disease and public drunkenness was, by modern day standards, out of cont
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MaryannC. Book Freak
Was so happy to find this with my Kindle Unlimited subscription because I searched for this high and low and almost purchased it on Ebay just to get my hands on this.

Set in London 1888, Susannah, a spinster nurse with no prospects of marriage meets and eventually marries a young, attractive doctor at the hospital she works at. Much to her good fortune
Susannah begins her new life in comfort and security with her new husband and his dour housekeeper Mrs. Wiggs, but soon after things begin to drama
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Lou
Sep 30, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
People of Abandoned Character is a historical crime thriller and Clare Whitfield's debut novel, set against the backdrop of Jack the Ripper's hunting ground of late-nineteenth-century Whitechapel, London. Susannah, a nurse at The London Hospital, rushes headlong into a marriage with young, affluent surgeon Thomas Lancaster. They've barely made it home to Chelsea from their honeymoon before it suddenly dawns on Susannah that Thomas's charming disposition is changing, either that or the facade he ...more
Louise Wilson
Sep 30, 2020 rated it liked it
London, 1888: Susannah rushes into marriage to a young and wealthy surgeon. When they return from honeymoon, she has her husband wrapped around her little finger. But Thomas's behaviour becomes increasingly volatile and violent. He stays out all night, returning home bloodied and full of secrets. When the first woman in Whitechapel is murdered, Susannah's interest is piqued. Everytime Thomas stays out late, someone is found dead. Is it a coincidence or is her husband Jack the Ripper?

Nurse Susan
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Jess
An absolute belter – what would you do if you suspected you had married Jack the Ripper?

People of Abandoned Character is a wonderfully twisty and atmospheric thriller that examines the utter fragility of a woman’s place in the world of Victorian London. It is devastating to learn how easily one could become impoverished, a ‘fallen woman’ as it were, and how difficult it would be to then forge your own freedom. Lost to the underbelly of Whitechapel, where even other women posed a threat - ready t
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Louise Wilson
London, 1888: Susannah rushes into marriage to a young and wealthy surgeon. When they return from honeymoon, she has her husband wrapped around her little finger. But Thomas's behaviour becomes increasingly volatile and violent. He stays out all night, returning home bloodied and full of secrets. When the first woman in Whitechapel is murdered, Susannah's interest is piqued. Everytime Thomas stays out late, someone is found dead. Is it a coincidence or is her husband Jack the Ripper?

Nurse Susan
...more
Bookread2day
Sep 23, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My review is on my website www.bookread2day.wordpress.com
Twitter @bookpage5

What would you do if you thought you had married a murder? He is my husband!

Honestly if you are going to read any book in October, this has got to be high up on the list.

Susannah is to become a nurse at London hospital, in Whitechapel. In 1888 susannah a nurse and Thomas a doctor were married in St Jude’s Whitechapel.

After they were married Thomas takes his wife Susannah back to his house. Thomas has a housekeeper, Mrs
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Renee Hermansen
Nov 26, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Clare Whitfield has excelled with this book. I was intrigued from the start and found that the story was expressed well and flowed along nicely.
In London in 1888, this book is seen from Susannah's view, as a nurse who rushes into marriage with a surgeon. She finds herself in a desperate lonely situation and focuses all her attention on the horrific murders happening at the time.
This book includes murder, secrets and deceit. It does provide gruesome details though out the book so be prepared but
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4cats
Sep 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing
My bookselling spidersense is telling me that People of Abandoned Character should be on every bookseller's lips. The narrative is told through Susannah, a nurse working at the London hospital, whilst there she finds herself being charmed by a wealthy surgeon. After a hasty marriage things begin to change, Thomas is no longer charming, he becomes secretive, the only person he seems to trust is their housekeeper Mrs Wiggs. Susannah finds herself alone and when a woman is murdered in Whitechapel, ...more
Lindsay
Nov 24, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2020
Completely defied the minimalist expectations set by the tag line and the summary- this book is far more than it appears to be! Astoundingly thought provoking and engrossing throughout the entirety of the novel, I binged this in one sitting.

Despite being purported as a historical domestic thriller set in late 1800’s Victorian England at the time when Jack the Ripper terrorized the streets of London, People of Abandoned Character uses this idea less as a plot device and more as a backdrop into a
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Catherine
A great debut that was a real page-turner!
✰  BJ's Book Blog ✰Janeane ✰
Copy received via Netgalley for an honest review

This is Clare Whitfield's debut novel, and it is one that I enjoyed.

I love true crime, and I have been fascinated by Jack The Ripper for many years now.

People of Abandoned Character is a warts and all story of life in Victorian England, the slums of London and the people who live there.

I liked how we are taken on one woman's journey and the questions she asks about her husband.

Is he Jack The Ripper?

I am sure many wived/girfriends/friends/family won
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Karen
Oct 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Review to follow but I really enjoyed this
Elite Group
Nov 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A dark and delicious historical crime thriller with a feisty and inspiring heroine


In 1888 London, nurse Susannah rushes into marriage with a wealthy young surgeon, believing in his passion for her and hope that he will be her ticket out of the life of poverty she grew up in. At first, their marriage is bliss, but shortly after their honeymoon, Thomas’s behaviour drastically changes. He becomes moody, volatile and aggressive, violent towards his wife and disappears late at night, returning covere
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Bianca Smith
Oct 20, 2020 rated it liked it
I received this book for free from Net Galley in exchange for an honest review. If you've read my other reviews, you'll know that if it's bad, I'll say so, regardless of how I received the book.

This review was first published at Mass Consternation.

I adored the last 35% of People of Abandoned Character by Clare Whitfield. I suspect others adore the first 65%. It wasn’t bad, just not for me.

So why did I choose People of Abandoned Character? The premise. It’s a story of a woman who suspects her hus
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Mairead Hearne (swirlandthread.com)
'He is my husband.
To honour and obey.
Until murder do us part.'


Now this was something rather different indeed!

People of Abandoned Character by Clare Whitfield is published today ( Oct 1st) with Head of Zeus and is a book that brings Victorian London alive with powerful descriptions and a gripping tale. Described as ‘a chilling debut thriller’ it is quite difficult to believe that this is the first novel from Clare Whitfield. Inspired by Jack the Ripper, it recounts the story of Susannah Chapm
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Angela
Sep 03, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
“People of Abandoned Character” by Clare Whitfield is a real page-turner! Its tone is grim, but the twists and turns of the plot make it a compulsive read.

Susannah Chapman leaves her home in Reading to become a nurse in the London Hospital in Whitechapel. Whitechapel in the late 19th century was a dire place: slums, prostitutes, disease and utter poverty….and before long, a place identified with a notorious serial killer, Jack the Ripper.

At the hospital, Susannah meets young Doctor Lancaster. He
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Connie
Sep 11, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Nurse Susannah Chapman thinks her dream has come true when she marries a young doctor. But the dream ends with the honeymoon and the mental and physical abuse begins.
Thomas - Susannah's husband - becomes secretive and stays out most nights, eventually returning in the early hours covered in what appears to be blood and seems only to confide in their housekeeper Mrs Wiggs.
So when the Whitechapel murders begin Susannah suspects her husband could be Jack the Ripper.
Susannah has kept her own secre
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Lel Budge
Sep 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Susannah’s last remaining grandparent has died, so now alone, she decides to move to London and train to be a nurse.

Here she meets Thomas, a wealthy surgeon and after a whirlwind romance they marry. But, as soon as the honeymoon is over a different side of Thomas emerges. He’s moody, violent and abusive, he begins staying out all night, returning home bloodied and secretive.

Then, the murders begin in Whitechapel…..

Susannah begins to wonder if Thomas is the notorious Jack The Ripper……..and wants
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Nicole Sweeney
Dec 22, 2020 rated it really liked it
People of Abandoned Character is the dark and gripping tale of Susannah, a young nurse who falls head over heels for a young and wealthy surgeon at the hospital where she works. They have a whirlwind romance and are very quickly married. When they return to her husband’s home she quickly finds that everything changes as he becomes more violent and argumentative. He stays out late, disappearing for days at a time and often returns covered in blood. As news reaches Susannah of a serial killer murd ...more
Sarah
Sep 10, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
‘People of Abandoned Character’ is Clare Whitfield’s first novel; full marks for an eye-catching title. It’s also a great idea to explore late Victorian London through the eyes of the wife of Jack the Ripper – or is he? Having recently read ‘Five’, the brilliant historical exposition of his victims, by Hallie Rubenhold, I was hoping for another intelligent exploration of a Victorian woman’s lot, albeit it fictional, intertwined with a Gothic thriller. Sadly, this was not to be.
The novel suffers
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Jan
Dec 17, 2020 rated it really liked it
Really enjoyed this rather graphic depiction of life in the times of Jack the Ripper, with violence erupting everywhere, gore, murder and mayhem it was right up my street. A slightly unreliable narrator, lots of richly drawn quirky characters, none of whom I trusted at any point. This is a gripping and tense historical mystery with quite a few twists.
Jeanette Lewis
Oct 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing
For a first book this read reveals a fabulous talent and a bright future for this author.

The book starts in a pretty straightforward fashion with the main character of Susannah Chapman with a few side stories that add to the body of the read. It's the year of 1885 where after the funeral of her grandmother with bags already packed Susannah heads for London. Even though she has a small inheritance from her grandmother's estate she knows it won't be enough to live on, so the cottage is rented out
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Tilly Fitzgerald
Oct 06, 2020 rated it really liked it
Well what a bloody terrifying and atmospheric read this was!

When Susannah marries Thomas Lancaster she can’t quite believe her luck. A handsome, wealthy surgeon who other women covet has chosen her - a tall, plain woman born to a prostitute in Whitechapel with no family left. Yet once the honeymoon is over, Susannah soon realises that she got the short straw in this marriage as Thomas becomes controlling, cruel and violent, and she has to put up with the condescension of his housekeeper Mrs Wigg
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Melisende
Sep 05, 2020 rated it really liked it
To think I nearly gave up on this. It wasn't quite holding my fascination, but the premise promised so much that I continued on. And OMG! What a finish! About halfway through things start to move - think gothic fiction along the lines of "Gaslight" and "Rebecca" and you'll know what you are in for.

Just as Alice was led down the the rabbit hole by the White Rabbit, so Whitfield leads the reader through the crime-ridden sordid streets of Victorian Whitechapel, an area of overcrowding and abject po
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Leonie Hinch
Nov 07, 2020 rated it really liked it
Thank you to Netgalley, Head of Zeus and Clare Whitfield for my arc of People of Abandoned Character in exchange for an honest review.

Synopsis: Its 1888 and London's streets are haunted by the man they call Jack the Ripper. Susannah a 30 year old nurse trying her best to escape her Whitechapel past has found herself back there working at 'the London'. But Susannah doesn't plan to go back to her roots. Instead, desperate for security she rushes into marriage with young surgeon Thomas Lancaster.
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Meg
Nov 26, 2020 rated it liked it
There's something about an unsolved mystery that piques curiosity and begs to be explored. This is how I felt when reading the synopsis of People of Abandoned Character. Who really was Jack the Ripper, what was his story and how did he manage to get away with such gruesome acts. The story is ripe for the imagining.
This story started out intriguing and I enjoyed my time in the first third of the novel as the author was creating the world and introducing the main character. Susannah was a charact
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Laura (Bookie_mama_bear)
Nov 30, 2020 rated it really liked it
People of Abandoned Character was my final read of November.....ooooft what a ride it was!
This is a retelling of Jack the Ripper. Told from the POV of Susannah, a newly married woman, who believes that her husband might be the culprit of the Whitechapel murders.
As we follow her trying unravel and solve the mystery of her husband we learn more about her past and who she is. I found the twists along the way a little obvious, however, the writing and atmosphere it creates had me hooked until the en
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