"This is without doubt a stunning debut novel from an author with uncommon knowledge of his subject-matter and plenty of literary talent."
"Fairer certainly brings the period to vivid life, so much so that as a reader you feel as if you’re living the action as much as the characters . . . The action is fast-paced and incredibly believable."
"A very impressive debut. This is an extremely entertaining and civilised read, richly characterised. stylishly written and cleverly plotted. A well-paced and suspenseful murder mystery is set with originality and wit in a confidently evoked early eighteenth-century London and excitingly investigated by a most unusual and engaging trio of amateur detectives."
"Deftly plotted, historically accurate, richly descriptive, and wittily written--this is a charming and compelling mystery. I loved it . . . A fabulous debut!"
"As a lover of literary detective fiction and a long-bereft fan of Bruce Alexander’s Sir John Fielding mysteries, I am delighted to have found David Fairer’s Chocolate House Treason. This novel offers an immersive 18th-century experience thanks to Fairer’s clubbable characters, pitch-perfect dialogue, and vivid period detail. Murder and political intrigue. Betrayal and loyalty. Suspense and surprise: Chocolate House Treason has it all!"
"This deeply informed, engaging, and wonderfully literary novel captures its social and personal dramas with Swiftian insight and the amusing urbanity of Addison. It is a compelling story narrated expertly."
“Having read and thoroughly enjoyed David Fairer's first book, Chocolate House Treason, I was keen to read this follow-up. I was not disappointed! The author's passion and knowledge for the period shines through, and I found this a totally immersive read. There is a depth and vividness that brings this world alive, with some lovely touches of humour and humanity woven into the narrative. I just loved it, as did the rest of my book group.”
“Fairer’s account of the theatre in its cultural, social and practical contexts is compellingly vivid. Again, I had that sense of complete immersion in a world that sits somewhere between the immediately familiar and the strangely different . . .”
“A hugely enjoyable mystery with an engaging cast of characters and a vivid evocation of the sights (and smells!) of eighteenth-century life. Actors, thugs, puritans, poets, pig-roasts, dastardly deeds in the costume store, and sinister plots to wreck the theatre. Strongly recommended!”
“The Devil’s Cathedral fuses an exciting mystery with an exploration of a vital aspect of 18th century London. Debates about the theatre come alive with an amazing power, violence, and contemporary relevance, and the sounds and smells of the London theatres and fairs are vividly evoked. David Fairer’s impressive scholarship is imaginatively translated into a tale that is intellectually and emotionally engaging.”
“A rollicking and fascinating tale, cleverly plotted and teeming with a large cast of colorful characters. A story chock-full of life, novel ideas and lots of delicious verbal pyrotechnics.”
“A wonderful book, recreating all the atmosphere of 18th century theatre life, with a mysterious plot for readers to solve, and a suspenseful climax. I learned how Mayfair got its name: from the carnivalesque street fair and entertainments. David Fairer’s thorough research makes the reader feel they are actually there. I particularly enjoyed the author’s own renderings of typical plays of the time!”
“A marvellous fictional voyage that deserves to be enjoyed without any moderation whatsoever!”