In Gods of Gotham  by Lyndsay Faye, Timothy Wilde reluctantly assumes his duties in New York City's newly-formed police department in 1845. In the middle of the night he hears a little girl's claim that dozens of bodies have been buried in a local forest. This happens at a time when the potato famine in Ireland has sent thousands of immigrants into the city, creating great anti-Irish and anti-Catholic sentiments. Timothy and his brother Valentine have risen from a dreadful upbringing only to be forced to become players in the politics and corruption of the city. Compelling characters and fast-paced plot make this a hard book to put down. Faye's ample research helps situate this dark mystery novel in a gritty, compelling period of American history.