Excerpt from Oscar Wilde and a Death of No Importance by Gyles Brandreth, plus links to reviews, author biography & more

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reading Guide |  Reviews |  Beyond the Book |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

Oscar Wilde and a Death of No Importance

by Gyles Brandreth

Oscar Wilde and a Death of No Importance by Gyles Brandreth
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • First Published:
    Jan 2008, 368 pages
    Paperback:
    Jan 2008, 368 pages

  • Rate this book


Book Reviewed by:
Vy Armour

Buy This Book

About this Book

Print Excerpt


"Billy Wood?"

"One of Bellotti's boys. He had been murdered. By candlelight. In an upstairs room. I need to know why. For what possible purpose? I need to know who has done this terrible thing." He took my hand in his. "Robert, I must go. It is midnight. I will tell you everything tomorrow. Let us meet at the Langham Hotel. At eight o'clock. The good doctor will be having his porridge. We will catch him. He will advise us what course to take. I have promised Constance I will be home tonight. Tite Street calls. You are no longer married, Robert, but I have my obligations. My wife, my children. I want to see them sleeping safely. I love them dearly. And I love you, too. Good-night, Robert. We have heard the chimes at midnight. We can at least say that."

And he was gone. He swept from the room with a flourish. He had arrived exhausted, but he appeared to depart refreshed. As I emptied the rest of the bottle into my glass, I pondered what he had told me, but could make no sense of it. Who was Billy Wood? Who was Bellotti? What upstairs room? Was this murder a fact -- or merely one of Oscar's fantastical allegories?

I finished the champagne and left the club. To my surprise, Hubbard was almost civil as he bade me good-night. There were cabs in the rank on Piccadilly and, as I had sold two articles that month, I was in funds, but the night was fine -- there was a brilliant August moon -- and the streets were quiet, so I decided to walk back to my room in Gower Street.

Twenty minutes later, on my way north towards Oxford Street, as I turned from a narrow side-alley into Soho Square, I stopped and drew myself back into the shadows. Across the deserted square, by the new church of St. Patrick, still encased in scaffolding, stood a hansom cab and, climbing into it, illuminated by a shaft of moonlight, were a man and a young woman. The man was Oscar: there was no doubt about that. But the young woman I did not recognise: her face was hideously disfigured and, from the way she held her shawl about her, I sensed she was gripped by a dreadful fear.

Copyright © 2007 by Gyles Brandreth

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Support BookBrowse

Become a Member and discover books that entertain, engage & enlighten!

Join Today!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: The Islamic Enlightenment
    The Islamic Enlightenment
    by Christopher de Bellaigue
    In this comprehensive and well-researched history, de Bellaigue examines the evolution of Islamic ...
  • Book Jacket: The Leavers
    The Leavers
    by Lisa Ko
    The day before Deming Guo saw his mother for the last time, she surprised him at school. A navy blue...
  • Book Jacket: Wonderful Feels Like This
    Wonderful Feels Like This
    by Sara Lovestam
    High school is hard; or perhaps, more accurately, growing up and finding oneself is hard. This is ...

Book Discussion
Book Jacket
The One-in-a-Million Boy by Monica Wood

A richly layered novel of hearts broken seemingly beyond repair and then bound by a stunning act of human devotion.

About the book
Join the discussion!

First Impressions

  • Book Jacket

    The Scribe of Siena
    by Melodie Winawer

    Equal parts transporting love story, meticulously researched historical fiction, and compelling time-travel narrative.
    Reader Reviews

Win this book!
Win The Chalk Pit

The Chalk Pit:
A Ruth Galloway Mystery

A string of murders takes Ruth underground in the newest book in the series.

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

T W Don't M A R

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.

 
Modal popup -