Title: MAD AS A HATTER
Genre: YA thriller
Word Count: 50,000
London, 1882. Seven years ago, Emil Aleric and his sister were kidnapped and taken to ‘Wonderland’ by a man claiming to come from the future. He called himself the Hatter. Emil survived the torture. His sister didn't.
When Emil hears of a serial killer ravaging London and leaving notes quoting Alice in Wonderland, Emil knows his former abductor has returned. And when his guardian, Inspector Corwin James, is put in charge of the case, he thinks it must be fate.
At first, Corwin's adamant that Emil have nothing to do with the case; after all, he’s only fourteen. However, as the two come closer to learning the truth of the murders, they find the most pivotal clues lie in Emil’s memories—suppressed for seven years, but now threatening to consume him. Emil must fight once again- but now, if Emil fails, and what the Hatter says is true, time itself will end.
They say that when you eliminate the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.
Corwin James wasn’t totally unfamiliar with this expression. It seemed pathetically obvious, though, especially to a man of his profession. It was almost insulting to bring his hours of work down to a single sentence.
Corwin James was an intelligent man, and a reasonable one at that. He was a little taller than average, a little younger than he appeared, a little more cynical than he let on. At eighteen, he’d taken over his late father’s job at Scotland Yard and now, three years later, was content as an upper-middle class citizen. It was December of 1882, and Corwin was sitting in his study, looking at the snow outside without really seeing it and inhaling the scent of fillet mignon without really smelling it.
Corwin was not the kind of man to slouch and prop his feet up on the table. To any onlooker, his current position, with his legs crossed and two fingers massaging his temple, would look poised and professional. For Corwin, it was the height of bad posture.
The cause of his lapse in etiquette was simply stress. Corwin was not a superstitious man, but reports of young women disappearing for days on end and reappearing as the victims of violent murders were convincing the restless public that the devil was at work.