A razor wrapped in silk : a St. Petersburg mystery

From  Eileen Effrat
Author:  R.N. Morris
Title:  A razor wrapped in silk : a St. Petersburg mystery 
This is the third in Morris’s historical crime mysteries featuring Porfiry  Petrovich, the detective from Dostoevsky’s Crime and Punishment. Two murders at opposite end of Russia’s social stratum —-an orphaned child laborer and an aristocratic  beauty—-test the deductive and intuitive skills of St. Petersburg’s premier detective. Are the two murders linked? Is this political provocation by revolutionaries? As the investigation proceeds, Petrovich’s life is threatened by those inside the Tsarist government and by those revolutionaries seeking social change. For an authentic portrayal of St. Petersburg in 1870,this is right on the mark. You can feel the political and social tensions of Tsarist Russia on the verge of revolution, as Morris describes the working conditions in factories and the luxurious living of the Russian nobility.  Although each novel can stand alone, I would suggest beginning with A Gentle Axe, and then A Vengeful Longing  to get a strong feel for the main character, Petrovich.