Paperback: 304 pages
Publication Date: July 28, 2015
Publisher: Kensington Publishing
Genre: Mystery (Cozy, Historical)
Synopsis: Traveling secretary Hattie Davish is returning to her once-quiet hometown, where a deluge of deadly secrets leaves her feeling anything but welcome…
When her good friend Virginia Hayward’s father passes away, Hattie Davish rushes to her hometown of St. Joseph, Missouri. She’s looking forward to visiting the place where she grew up, even if the circumstances bringing her there are bleak. But upon her arrival, she learns that all is not well in St. Joe. Virginia is cold and distant, Frank Hayward’s death is shrouded in mystery, and a string of troubling incidents have descended on Hattie’s alma mater, Mrs. Chaplin’s School for Women. Frank was the school’s bookkeeper, and as Hattie begins investigating the bizarre goings-on, she becomes convinced that someone other than Frank was in the casket—but who? Her search for the truth takes her from the town cemetery, to the home of an infamous outlaw, to the dungeon-like tunnels beneath the State Lunatic Asylum—and brings her face-to-face with a killer bent on the deadliest lesson of all…
My review: I have not read any of the previous books in this series, but this fourth book is entertaining and exciting. There is all kinds of action to be found: embezzlement, arson, malpractice, murder, burglary and lies. The list of suspects is lengthy, and the perpetrators are numerous.
The author has done plenty of research on the era, and it shows in her writing. I'm not always a fan of historical fiction, but this is a major exception. The characters are well-written, and the settings are amazingly described.
I plan to go back and read the rest of the series, and to continue reading any future books as well.
My rating: Four stars
About the author
As a biologist and a librarian, Anna Loan-Wilsey tracked down mysteries every day. Now as the bestselling author of the historical, cozy Hattie Davish Mysteries Series, she enjoys creating them. Anna combines her love of history and travel by sending her crime-solving Victorian private secretary to a different historic town in each book: A Lack of Temperance,an Amazon #1 Historical Mystery bestseller,Anything But Civil (a Christmas mystery), A Sense of Entitlement (which hit #1 in iBooks: Historical Mystery) and A Deceptive Homecoming (due out July 2105). Anna lived in New York, Texas, Finland and Canada before settling down in a Victorian farmhouse near Ames with her inquisitive five year old, her old yellow dog and her very funny, very patient husband. She is an active member of Sisters in Crime and Mystery Writers of America.
One of Anna’s favorite aspects of writing is connecting with readers via her website:www.annaloanwilsey.com or on Facebook:www.facebook.com/annaloanwilseyauthor or on Twitter: www.twitter.com/annaloanwilsey
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