In 1882 London, a detective duo playfully reminiscent of Holmes and Watson debut in M.R.C. Kasasian’s The Mangle Street Murders. When March Middleton’s father dies, she agrees to live with her godfather, the eminent “personal” detective (private is for bedrooms, he says), Sidney Grice. Cold-blooded, vain and avaricious, Grice is approached when a beautiful young woman is stabbed to death in a particularly bloody and gruesome way, and her mild-mannered husband, William Ashby, is accused of the crime. The victim’s mother tearfully pleads with Grice to clear the husband’s name, but as she is penniless, Grice refuses. March intercedes and offers to pay his fee, and when they meet with the woebegone Ashby, March is as convinced of his innocence as surely as Grice believes him guilty. Together, they brave the seedy back alleys of London, survey gore-splattered crime scenes, and insult each other generously. March is a canny, sharp-witted heroine, with a secret taste for gin and cigarettes, and a secret sorrow. Grice is a teetotalling, vegan skinflint who slowly comes to respect March’s toughness. Together they provide morbid and clever fun for mystery lovers. Plus, there’s a cameo by Arthur Conan Doyle. What’s not to love?