The Mystery of a Hansom Cab

The Mystery of a Hansom Cab Summary

An Apple Books Classic edition.

We’ve all heard of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, the creator of Sherlock Holmes. But what about the novel that inspired Doyle-and outsold him? Fergus Hume’s <i>The Mystery of a Hansom Cab</i> made him the bestselling crime writer of the 19th century.

The story opens in the dead of night in Victorian-era Melbourne. A man pulls up to a police station and tells them he’s shuttling the body of a murder victim inside his hansom cab. And although he’s laid eyes on the man he believes to be the murderer, the driver can offer no concrete leads.

Hume’s novel is as famous for its plot as it is for its depiction of Melbourne’s class divides at the time. With its portraits of grimy, impoverished neighbourhoods alongside scenes of high-society opulence, The Mystery of a Hansom Cab is an absorbing historical mystery.

Book Reviews


A good read5 star

It seemed real. I couldn’t put it down.55


Meh2 star

Victorin, patronizing misogyny full of heavy-handed literary references wrapped around a mediocre plot. Skip this and go directly to anything by Conan Doyle.25

Grandma Fox 85

The mystery of the Hansom Cab5 star

First page of the book looked like a loser but kept on reading. Turned out to be one heck of a good book. The Author made me think about my decision to quit reading and I was thrilled with the ending. Thanks for both the book and the author. Another old lady who loves a good book.55


Great Read!5 star

Frustrated, because I had the culprit, though not the motive, figured out from the beginning, but the great thing about this book is that it keeps you continually guessing until the very end. Can’t say much more about it other than that I highly recommend it to any mystery lover. 📔55

Terry Weber-Rodriguez

Good book.5 star

Very entertaining. I enjoyed the peek into the early days of Australia. I wish, in many ways, we enjoyed reading and conversation as was carried on before modern entertainment.55


Thoroughly enjoyable5 star

The novel was fun to read. And yes, don’t let the digital version distract you with its many errors.55


Good Read5 star

I enjoyed this book with its dated language and the descriptions of late 19th century Australia. Please don’t let the many editing errors distract your enjoyment.55


Good book5 star

It’s pretty good55

Louise Adele

Keeps You Guessing5 star

An intriguing mystery set in Victorian Australia offers plenty of twists and interesting characters while immersing the reader in a detailed account of the culture and its customs.55

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