Another Review at MyShelf.Com

Uncivil Death In Norfolk

By M E Cooper

     This is the second in the series of Civil War mysteries featuring real-life Confederate General WW Loring (the first being Uncivil Death). Loring is still ill with pneumonia and in hospital this time, with his trusty aide and narrator Lieutenant Conley by his side. He isn’t there very long before a young doctor is murdered, and thus Conley is once again sent forth to find out whodunit.

     This is a more involving plot than the first in this series, which was strong on history and atmosphere but somewhat short on story. Now we are more into true whodunit territory, with suspects all over the place, plenty of investigation and red herrings in abundance. History isn’t neglected though, and also in this slim volume is an account of a battle between the first ironclad ships, plenty of information about life in a hospital in those days and very much a feeling of “being there” which separates good historical fiction from the rest. Conley makes a fine narrator, and the author has really got under the skin of the times, even injecting some welcome humor into an otherwise grim subject with this somewhat prudish young man. This looks to be a series that is going places – one to appeal to fans of mainstream historical fiction (especially if this period is one you favor) as well as history mystery readers.

The Book

Padlock Mystery Press
November 2004
Crime [1862, Virginia]
More at 



The Reviewer

Rachel A Hyde
Reviewed 2005
© 2005