Series: Edwardian Murder Mysteries #1
This is an Edwardian mystery with a naïve young woman called Rose and a slightly older gentleman with a war wound as amateur detectives when a woman is found dead at a country house party. The period information was sometimes over-explained, Rose was incredibly naïve, and the mystery was so-so with a lot of cover-ups because of the suspects' positions in society. It took a while to get to the death too because there was a lot of introduction with Rose and Harry before we got to the party. Not sure whether I'll read another one in the series.
I liked the narrator though.
At this, the 16th novel in the Charlie Parker series, I find myself still blown away by the quality of the writing and the depth of the story. Charlie Parker rocks!
But it's not just him, is it? It's Louis and Angel, a pair of gay henchmen, (but I mean "henchmen" in the best way), whose story has to be counted among the greatest love stories of all time, at least in my humble opinion. Their relationship is complicated and wonderful all at once, as is my love for them both.
It's Charlie's daughters, both alive and dead, and my fears for them and what might happen in the future.
It's Moxie Castin, the lawyer with a heart of gold and a soft spot for the Star of David, which plays such an important role in this story.
I won't rehash the plot, because the synopsis and about 10 million other reviews already do that. I will say that the end of this book left me rattled and somewhat angry.
A couple of people still deserve their due and I have no doubt they're going to get it, but it didn't happen here.
However, I know that Charlie Parker doesn't fail, (at least he hasn't yet), and I will be there, bright eyed and bushy tailed when it happens. In the meantime? I'll be keeping an eye on those Times of London crossword puzzles.
THE WOMAN IN THE WOODS gets my highest recommendation. Period!
*Thank you to Atria and to NetGalley for the e-ARC of this book in exchange for my honest opinion. This is it.*
I'm already entranced with this book, only a few pages in.
But I have miles to go before I sleep (or read) this evening. Groceries to buy, supper to cook (Tandoori Chicken), a rhubarb apple crisp to make, charging my camera battery and getting all packed & organized for my mountain adventure tomorrow.
At least the desire to get back to The Hazel Wood will keep me motivated to get all the tasks done.
"And suddenly I knew- as sure as the laws of chemistry- that remaining passive is no longer prudence. It has become cowardice."
Kate is attempting to pass the demanding Master of Wine examination in order to move up in her career in California. When the restaurant she works for closes suddenly, she takes her mentor's advice to return to the land of her roots- and her family's vineyard in Burgundy to brush up on her French wines. While staying with her brother and sister-in-law, Kate once again comes in contact with neighbor and once fiancee, Jean-Luc. To clear her mind, Kate agrees to help clean out the family cave or basement. While sifting through a hefty amount of junk Kate finds many items from an unknown family member, Helene Marie Charpin. Kate is rebuffed by her Uncle when she asks about Helene. However, a trip to the library gives a clue about the family secret, Helene was prosecuted as a collaborator during WWII. This sends Kate and sister-in-law Heather on a hunt to uncover the truth. While digging, they also uncover a secret cave, untouched since the war and filled with priceless vintage wines.
A family secret, a historical mystery and a romance round out The Lost Vintage. This story has many notes that were brought together like a fine wine. I was drawn in by the beauty of France, the descriptions of the vineyards, grapes, wines and traditions. Then I was intrigued by Kate's broken romance with Jean-Luc. Then the historical mystery found me and I was captivated by Helene and her long lost journal. Lastly, the suspense of tracking down the missing wine pulled me in even further. The point of view switched between Kate and Helene's journal, I am a sucker for dual-time stories, so this suited me perfectly. The plot did pick up for me when Helene's mystery was introduced. I enjoyed learning more about the French resistance as well as the 'horizontal collaborators' and their fate. Helene's story made me think about our choices for survival, making this a relevant story for many people during the present. I was pleased to find out that Helene's story was inspired by Resistor, Agnes Humbert, who I will be looking farther into. Overall, an intricate story that mixes past with present, romance and mystery for a delectable read.
This book was received for free in return for an honest review.