When her good friend Virginia Hayward s father passes away, Hattie Davish rushes to her hometown of St.Read more...
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Publisher: Center Point$34.95
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 "
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2015-06-08
- Reviewer: Staff
Poignant backstory, historical color, and expert pacing distinguish this mystery, the fourth featuring secretary Hattie Davish (after 2014’s A Sense of Entitlement) and the best yet in Loan-Wilsey’s 19th-century cozy series. Hattie receives an anonymous letter containing a newspaper obituary for Frank Hayward, father of a girlhood chum and bookkeeper at Hattie’s alma mater, Mrs. Chaplin’s School for Women. Driven home to St. Joseph, Mo., for the first time since her father’s tragic death, she finds Mrs. Chaplin’s plagued by disturbing incidents, including financial irregularities implicating Frank. Worse, lack of a characteristic scar suggests that the accident-disfigured body at the funeral isn’t his. Her investigation of Frank’s whereabouts, the corpse’s identity, and the school’s troubles winds through a local insane asylum, the site of Jesse James’s death, and her own unresolved past. As always, Loan-Wilsey’s thorough research grounds the lively plot in the era’s rich history. Agent: John Talbot, Talbot Fortune Agency. (Aug.)