Now a Netflix film starring Christian Bale, Harry Melling, and Gillian Anderson
“Shockingly clever and devoutly unsentimental . . . reads like a lost classic. Bayard reinvigorates historical fiction.” — New York Times Book Review
An ingenious tale of murder and revenge at West Point, featuring a retired detective and a young cadet named Edgar Allan Poe—from the author of Courting Mr. Lincoln.
At West Point Academy in 1830, the calm of an October evening is shattered by the discovery of a young cadet's body swinging from a rope. The next morning, an even greater horror comes to light. Someone has removed the dead man's heart.
Augustus Landor—who acquired some renown in his years as a New York City police detective—is called in to discreetly investigate. It's a baffling case Landor must pursue in secret, for the scandal could do irreparable damage to the fledgling institution. But he finds help from an unexpected ally—a moody, young cadet with a penchant for drink, two volumes of poetry to his name, and a murky past that changes from telling to telling.
The strange and haunted Southern poet, for whom Landor develops a fatherly affection, is named Edgar Allan Poe.