Who are Charlotte and Thomas Pitt?
Written by English author Anne Perry, this historical detective series is about Thomas Pitt, a police inspector in Victorian London.
It’s not only about him, because the series also features his wife, Charlotte. Thomas Pitt is from a working-class background, but Charlotte is from an upper-class family and she likes to use her connections to the landed gentry and aristocracy to help her husband solve murder investigation.
Charlotte and Thomas Pitt Books in Order:
- The Cater Street Hangman – While the Ellison girls were out paying calls and drinking tea like proper Victorian ladies, a maid in their household was strangled to death. Inspector Thomas Pitt investigates the scene and finds no one above suspicion. As his intense questioning causes many a composed facade to crumble, Pitt finds himself couriously drawn to pretty Charlotte Ellison. Yet, a romance between a society girl and so unsuitable a suitor was impossible in the midst of a murder….
- Callander Square – Murders just don’t happen in fashionable areas like Callander Square–but these two have. The police are totally baffled. Pretty, young Charlotte Ellison Pitt, however, is curious. Inspector Pitt’s well-bred wife doesn’t often meddle in her husband’s business, but something about this case intrigues her.
- Paragon Walk – In the posh London street of Paragon Walk, an unspeakable crime is committed: A young woman is brutally raped and murdered. Once again, Charlotte and Thomas Pitt set themselves against a vicious murderer. As the elegant masks of the wellborn suspects slip, it becomes appallingly clear that something ugly lurks behind the handsome façades of Paragon Walk.
- Resurrection Row – It is a most incredible sight: a corpse sitting at the reins of a hansom cab. To Charlotte and Thomas Pitt, this macabre apparition seems like sheer lunacy. Who would ever want to exhume a decently buried old chap like Lord Augustus Fitzroy-Hammond? A doctor insists that Lord Augustus’s death was natural. But as far as the police are concerned, there’s certainly nothing natural about any of this gristly aftermath.
- Rutland Place – Charlotte and Thomas Pitt just cannot seem to stay away from trouble. When Charlotte learns of her mother’s distress in losing a locket with a compromising picture, she has no idea that it’s just the beginning of a series of bizarre events that will end in sudden death.
- Bluegate Fields – The body of a boy, clearly from the upper classes, has been found in the filthy sewers of Bluegate Fields, one of London’s most dangerous slums. What’s more, the unfortunate boy had been violated before he was murdered. But when the Waybournes, the boy’s family, refuse to answer the police’s questions, Inspector Thomas Pitt begins to wonder what secrets they are trying to hide.
- Death in the Devil’s Acre – When a doctor is found brutally murdered in the lurid section of London aptly named “Devil’s Acre,” even its most hardened residents are stunned. But shock soon turns to horror when Inspector Thomas Pitt discovers three more bodies with the same gruesome “calling card”.
- Cardington Crescent – When the womanizing aristocrat George March is found dead over his morning coffee, the immediate concern of his shocked Cardington Crescent household is quieting the scandal as discreetly—and quickly—as possible. Unfortunately for March’s wife, Emily, that means accusing her of the murder. But the family does not take into account Emily’s beloved sister, who is none other than the indomitable Charlotte Pitt.
- Silence in Hanover Close – When Inspector Thomas Pitt is asked to reopen a three-year-old murder case that had taken place in London’s luxurious Hanover Close, he is all too aware that his superiors want him to simply smooth things over. Enter Charlotte Pitt and her sister, Emily. As the social equals of the inhabitants of the Close, the women are privy to conversations that would never reach the ears of a mere policeman. What they find is a secret so shocking it will lead to more deaths.
- Bethlehem Road – The gentleman tied to the lamppost on Westminster Bridge is most elegantly attired and he is quite, quite dead. Why should anyone kill Sir Lockwood Hamilton, the most conscientious member of Parliament? Before Inspector Thomas Pitt can even speculate on the reasons, a colleague of Sir Lockwood’s meets the same fate in the same spot.
- Highgate Rise – Clemency Shaw, the wife of a prominent doctor, has died in a tragic fire in the peaceful suburb of Highgate. But the blaze was set by an arsonist, and it is unclear whether she or Dr. Shaw was the intended victim. Baffled by the scarcity of clues in this terrible crime, Inspector Thomas Pitt turns to the people who had been closest to the couple—Clemency’s stuffy but distinguished relatives.
- Belgrave Square – When an obscure moneylender named William Weems is murdered in the humble Clerkenwell district, there are no mourners. Yet when Inspector Thomas Pitt finds in the murdered man’s office a list containing the names of some of London’s most distinguished gentlemen, he begins to realize the magnitude of his duty.
- Farrier’s Lane – When the distinguished Mr. Justice Stafford dies of opium poisoning, his shocking demise resurrects one of the most sensational cases ever to inflame England: the murder five years before of Kingsley Blaine, whose body was found crucified in Farriers’ Lane. Amid the public hysteria for revenge, the police had arrested a Jewish actor who was soon condemned to hang. Inspector Thomas Pitt, investigating Stafford’s death, is drawn into the Farriers’ Lane murder as well, for it appears that Stafford may have been about to reopen the case.
- The Hyde Park Headsman – Not since the bloody deeds of Jack the Ripper have Londoners felt such terror as that aroused by the gruesome beheadings in Hyde Park. And if newly promoted Police Superintendent Thomas Pitt does not quickly apprehend the perpetrator, he is likely to lose his own head, professionally speaking. Yet even with the help of Charlotte Pitt’s subtle investigation, the sinister violence continues unchecked.
- Traitors Gate – Someone in the Colonial Office is passing secrets to Germany about England’s strategy on Africa. While Thomas Pitt investigates this matter of treason, he is quietly looking into the tragic death of his childhood mentor, Sir Arthur Desmond. And when the strangled body of an aristocratic society beauty is found floating near lonely Traitors Gate, Pitt and his clever wife, Charlotte, begin to see clearly the pattern of tragedy and frightening evil that Pitt must deal with, at the risk of his career—and his life.
- Pentecost Alley – The murder of a prostitute named Ada McKinley in a bedroom on decrepit Pentecost Alley should occasion no stir in Victoria’s great metropolis, but under the victim’s body, the police find a Hellfire Club badge inscribed with the name “Finlay Fitzjames”—a name that instantly draws Superintendent Thomas Pitt into the case.
- Ashworth Hall – When a group of powerful Irish Protestants and Catholics gather at a country house to discuss Irish home rule, contention is to be expected. But when the meeting’s moderator, government bigwig Ainsley Greville, is found murdered in his bath, negotiations seem doomed. Unless Charlotte and Thomas Pitt can root out the truth, simmering hatreds and passions may again explode in murder.
- Brunswick Gardens – In London’s affluent Brunswick Gardens, the battle over Charles Darwin’s revolutionary theory of evolution intensifies as the respected Reverend Parmenter is boldly challenged by his beautiful assistant, Unity Bellwood. When Unity, three months pregnant, tumbles down the staircase to her death, Superintendent Thomas Pitt is as certain as he can be that one of the three deeply devout men in the house committed murder.
- Bedford Square – The freshly dead body sprawled on the Bedford Square doorstep of General Brandon Balantyne is an affront to every respectable sensibility. The general denies all knowledge of the shabbily dressed victim who has so rudely come to death outside his home, but Superintendent Thomas Pitt cannot believe him.
- Half Moon Street – For Superintendent Thomas Pitt, the sight of the dead man riding the morning tide of the Thames is unforgettable. The corpse lies in a battered punt drifting through the early mist, clad in a torn green gown and bestrewn with flowers. Pitt’s determined search for answers to the victim’s identity leads him deep into London’s bohemia.
- The Whitechapel Conspiracy – And in a packed Old Bailey courtroom, Superintendent Thomas Pitt’s testimony causes distinguished soldier John Adinett to be sentenced to hang for the inexplicable murder of a friend. Instead of being praised for his key testimony, Pitt is removed from his station command and transferred to Whitechapel, one of the East End’s most dangerous slums. There he must work undercover investigating alleged anarchist plots.
- Southampton Row – A divisive election is fast approaching. Passions are so enflamed that Thomas Pitt has been ordered not to solve a crime but to prevent a national disaster. The Liberal candidate is Aubrey Serracold, whose wife’s dalliance with spiritualism threatens his chances. Indeed, she is one of the participants in a late-night séance that becomes the swan song of a stylish clairvoyant who is found brutally murdered the next morning in her house on Southampton Row.
- Seven Dials – Thomas Pitt, mainstay of Her Majesty’s Special Branch, is summoned to Connaught Square mansion, where the body of a junior diplomat lies huddled in a wheelbarrow. Pitt’s orders are to protect—at all costs—the good name of the third person in the garden: senior cabinet minister Saville Ryerson.
- Long Spoon Lane – After bombs explode during an anarchist attack in Long Spoon Lane, two of the culprits are captured and the leader is shot . . . but by whom? As Thomas Pitt of the Special Branch delves into the case, he finds that there’s more to the terrorism than the brutality of misguided idealists. Clues suggest that Inspector Wetron is the mastermind. To defeat Wetron, Pitt must run in harness with his old enemy, Sir Charles Voisey.
- Buckingham Palace Gardens – The Prince of Wales has asked four wealthy entrepreneurs and their wives to Buckingham Palace to discuss a fantastic idea: the construction of a six-thousand-mile railroad that would stretch the full length of Africa. But the prince’s gathering proves disastrous when the mutilated body of a prostitute turns up in a linen closet among the queen’s monogrammed sheets. With great haste, Thomas Pitt, is summoned to resolve the crisis.
- Treason at Lisson Grove – Also known as “Betrayal at Lisson Grove”. The man who lies bleeding to death in a London brickyard is no ordinary drifter but a secret informant with details of an international plot against the British government. Thomas Pitt, hastening to rendezvous with him, arrives seconds after the knife-wielding assassin—who, in turn, flees on an erratic course that leads Pitt in wild pursuit to picturesque St. Malo on the French coast.
- Dorchester Terrace – Thomas Pitt is now the powerful head of Britain’s Special Branch, and some people fear that he may have been promoted beyond his abilities. His own self-doubt is fueled by rumors of a plot to blow up connections on the Dover-London rail line, on which Austrian duke Alois Habsburg is soon to travel. But why destroy an entire train to kill one obscure Austrian royal?
- Midnight at Marble Arch – It is 1896, and Thomas Pitt is in charge of Special Branch. He is beginning to understand the power he now commands, but is still ill at ease at the glittering events he and his wife Charlotte must attend. During a lavish party at the Spanish Embassy, a policeman breaks into Pitt’s conversation with investor Rawdon Quixwood to break the terrible news that Quixwood’s wife, Catherine, has been viciously assaulted at their home, and left for dead.
- Death on Blackheath – Thomas Pitt has the job of keeping Britain safe from spies and traitors. So there’s no obvious reason why he is suddenly ordered to investigate two minor incidents at the home of naval weapons expert Dudley Kynaston. But weeks later, when the mutilated body of an unidentified young woman is found near Kynaston’s home, Pitt realizes that this is no ordinary police investigation.
- The Angel Court Affair – As the nineteenth century draws to a close, most of Europe is in political turmoil, and terrorist threats loom large across the continent. Adding to this unrest is the controversial Sofia Delacruz, who has come to London from Spain to preach a revolutionary gospel of love and forgiveness that many consider blasphemous. Thomas Pitt is charged with protecting Sofia. When Sofia suddenly vanishes and two of her female disciples are gruesomely murdered, Pitt is challenged as never before.
- Treachery at Lancaster Gate – When an explosion in London kills two policemen and seriously injures three more, many believe that anarchists are the culprits. But Thomas Pitt knows the city’s radical groups well enough to suspect that someone with decidedly more personal motives lit the deadly fuse. As he investigates the source of the fatal blast, Pitt is stunned to discover that the bombing was a calculated strike against the ranks of law enforcement.
- Murder on the Serpentine – The body of Sir John Halberd, the Queen’s confidant, has been found in the shallow water of the Serpentine in Hyde Park, bearing the evidence of a fatal blow to the head. At Her Majesty’s request, Sir John had been surreptitiously investigating Alan Kendrick, a horse-racing enthusiast who seems to have had an undue amount of influence on her son, the Prince of Wales. Now, Thomas Pitt must navigate the corridors of power with the utmost discretion and stealth, for it seems certain that Sir John’s killer is a member of the upper classes.