On October 24, 1890 a clerk finds a dead woman in the middle of the road, her arms lacerated, her face bloodied, windpipe and ligaments cut clean through. Later that night, a constable finds a bloody pram leaning against a residential gate, and the following morning, a hawker finds a dead baby hidden underneath a nettle bush. Eventually the police connect the corpse to the pram and the baby, and, shockingly arrest a 24-year-old courtesean named Mary Eleanor Pearcey. Thus begins the story of the Hampstead Tragedy. Woman at the Devil’s Door is the meticulously researched and expertly told story of one of England’s most sensational crimes and first-rate murderesses.
A brilliant work of scholarship that, from its first page, reads like a forensic thriller, Sarah Hopton’s WOMAN AT THE DEVIL’S DOOR brings to life one of the most sensational, if long-forgotten, crimes of Victorian England. Fanciers of historical true crime owe Hopton a debt of thanks for this utterly gripping book.”