“The Peculiarities is an adventure of unraveling conspiracies, exposing London’s most hidden secrets, and witnessing the unexplainable. It is Terry Pratchett’s satire mixed into a darker version of Alice in Wonderland." —Grimdark Magazine


From popular historical fiction author David Liss (A Conspiracy of Paper) comes the tale of a clueless young man embroiled in a deadly supernatural mystery in Victorian London. Rooted in strange conspiracies and secret societies, this absurdist comedic romp combines strange bedfellows with murderous creatures, resulting in an unexpectedly delightful consequences.


All of his life, Thomas Thresher has been free of obligation and responsibility. But that is all over now. He is a twenty-three-year-old man whose best days are behind him. Thomas’s older brother Walter has trapped him in a tedious clerical job at the family bank in London, and Thomas is expected to wed a wealthy young woman in whom he has no interest.


But Thomas has more serious problems than those of a disaffected young man. There are irregularities at the bank he cannot explain. His childhood friend has mysteriously turned up dead. Worse, a verdant skin malady has infected him: leaves have begun sprouting on his skin. Thomas must conclude that it is due to the long-rumored Peculiarities. London’s famous grey fog has been concealing a rash of unnatural afflictions—and worse, the murderous Elegants.


As Thomas grows leafier, the conspiracies surrounding him become more apparent. He cannot determine whom to trust: his own family; his banking co-workers and superiors; the beautiful widow of his companion; the woman he is to marry. Perhaps a lycanthropic medium and the members of a secret occult society . . . including a strange man named Aleister Crowley.

The Peculiarities by David Liss

  • Tachyon Publications 2021

    New paperback

    336 pages