• Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks (April 12, 2016)
A horrific explosion at a gunpowder mill sends Bess Crawford to war-torn France to keep a deadly pattern of lies from leading to more deaths, in this compelling and atmospheric mystery from the New York Timesbestselling author of A Question of Honor and An Unwilling Accomplice.
An explosion and fire at the Ashton Gunpowder Mill in Kent has killed over a hundred men. It’s called an appalling tragedy—until suspicion and rumor raise the specter of murder. While visiting the Ashton family, Bess Crawford finds herself caught up in a venomous show of hostility that doesn’t stop with Philip Ashton’s arrest. Indeed, someone is out for blood, and the household is all but under siege.
The only known witness to the tragedy is now at the Front in France. Bess is asked to find him. When she does, he refuses to tell her anything that will help the Ashtons. Realizing that he believes the tissue of lies that has nearly destroyed a family, Bess must convince him to tell her what really happened that terrible Sunday morning. But now someone else is also searching for this man.
To end the vicious persecution of the Ashtons, Bess must risk her own life to protect her reluctant witness from a clever killer intent on preventing either of them from ever reaching England.
My thoughts: I had mixed feelings as to what to expect from the book, as I had never read a Bess Crawford book. And in the end, I thought it was an okay book. I felt that the middle of the book seemed to drag a little bit too much, but the beginning and the end were strong. I quite liked Bess and thought she was a fairly spunky character, albeit confined within the constraints of working within the military.
Bottom line: If you have read the previous books in the series, you will enjoy this book, but if you haven't read any of the other books, I would suggest going back and reading the previous 6 books in the series. Recommended.
I received this book in exchange for unbiased review of the book.
About Charles Todd
Charles Todd is the author of the Inspector Ian Rutledge mysteries, the Bess Crawford mysteries, and two stand-alone novels. A mother and son writing team, they live in Delaware and North Carolina.
Visit their website at Charlestodd.com and like CharlesToddNovels on Facebook.