Love, Lust, & Murder in the Gilded Age ...

The Avenging Angel Detective AgencyTM Mysteries by Robert Brighton

The Buffalo Butcher

Jack the Ripper in the Electric City


Summer 1901, and the great Pan-American Exposition welcomes the world to Buffalo, New York—Queen of the Lakes. Eight million visitors throng the bustling boomtown—all of them looking for a good time.

As heat and swarming crowds choke the city, the bodies of prostitutes begin turning up, slashed and mutilated by a pitiless hand—their flesh carved with strange symbols.

Some say the killings are the work of the Devil himself. Others hint that the Whitechapel Murderer, Jack the Ripper, has crossed the Atlantic to resume his bloody career. Yet the city’s power brokers—afraid of any publicity that would harm the Exposition—turn a blind eye to the victims. They’re only whores, after all . . .

As the bloody summer wears on, only one thing is clear: it’ll be up to the working girls themselves to stop the carnage. And in The Buffalo Butcher, five of them will stand together to confront the killer . . . and to reclaim their humanity.

An important new novel by Robert Brighton, acclaimed author of the Avenging Angel Detective Agency™ Mysteries.


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Gilded Age Nuggets


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Current of Darkness

Desire and Deceit in the Gilded Age


The third book in the Avenging Angel Detective Agency™ Mysteries - publishing Spring 2024.


Haunted by her past, detective Sarah Payne immerses herself in a new case  . . . while a vengeful Alicia Miller seizes the reins of her murdered husband’s company . . .


A secret meeting in nearby Niagara Falls lures beautiful Sarah Payne undercover . . . behind the bright façade of the honeymoon playground and into a much darker place—the strange and perilous underworld of the booming electric power industry.

In this shadowy demimonde, a dangerous cabal of union bosses, saboteurs, and tycoons conspire to destroy handsome, enigmatic industrialist Charles Kendall—and will stop at nothing, including murder, to accomplish their ends.  This high stakes game of industrial espionage threatens to pull Sarah into a riptide of duplicity, betrayal, and double-dealing . . . and silence her before she uncovers the truth.

Meanwhile, in fashionable Ashwood, sultry widow Alicia Miller seizes power at her murdered husband’s envelope company—only to find herself pitted against the new majority owner, who has his own ideas about women in business. But cunning and captivating Alicia has ideas, too . . . and is determined to see them through, even if it means bending—or breaking—a few rules along the way.

Both women will have to find the courage and resourcefulness to survive . . . and set aside their own simmering feud to find a way out—together.

Dive with them into the murky depths below the gleaming surface of the Gilded Age . . . in Robert Brighton’s Current of Darkness.


On The Blog


Were Victorians Prudes?


People of the Victorian period (until 1901) and the Edwardian period (1901-1914) have acquired a reputation — if countless television programs and movies are any guide — as uptight, stuffy Puritans who call people’s legs ‘limbs’, faint dead away at the mere mention of sex, and drape linen loincloths around Michelangelo’s David. Were our ancestors really that uptight?


Announcing The Buffalo Butcher!


Today’s news - the launch of The Buffalo Butcher! Halloween is my favorite holiday. Is it a holiday?  I’m not sure, but it feels like one to me—perhaps because I grew up in the greatest Halloween region on the planet, where the season always brought with it the tang of apple cider, the crunch of falling leaves, and a brisk wind off Lake Erie—on which might float the first flakes of winter snow.


Gilded Age Golf and the Red Jacket Golf Club


The lovely Delaware Park Golf Course, which rolls over one of Frederick Law Olmsted’s many beautiful Buffalo parks, has been a favorite of golfers since the 1890s.  But it was also once the setting for some of the rough-and-tumble social climbing of the young and striving Elmwood Set, who were determined to establish themselves as separate, distinct – and possibly superior – to the the city’s old-money stiffs.