Friday, March 21, 2014

An Unmarked Grave - A Just Desserts selection!

An Unmarked Grave
by Charles Todd

This fourth volume in the Bess Crawford series, from mother and son writing team "Charles Todd", following the experiences of an English nurse in France during WWI, begins as the Spanish Flu is running rampant throughout Europe. With soldiers dying left and right of the disease, and bodies being stacked up for eventual burial, it is fortuitous that one of the orderlies at a Medical Aid station near the French front line sees a body in storage that has died of other-than-natural causes and not been accounted for. When he brings his discovery to the attention of Sister Bess Crawford, she recognizes the victim, who died of a broken neck, as a past member of her father's former Indian regiment, whose body has been concealed with the "plague" victims. Before Bess and the orderly can report this apparent murder, Bess herself falls victim to the flu and has to be taken back to England to recover, and the orderly mysterious commits suicide. Once Bess is coherent again, she begins to investigate the unnatural death, but attracts the attentions of someone who'd just as soon not have his handiwork revealed. Bess is an interesting character -- she compares very favorably with Maisie Dobbs, from Jacqueline Winspear's very similar post-WWI series. Bess' upper-middle-class background, and the fact that her father has the pull to have her removed to safety seemingly whenever he feels like it, reduces the seriousness of her wartime setting somewhat, but the mystery was still interesting, and the descriptions of wartime France and England were very evocative of the times. -- recommended by Scott C. - Bennett Martin Public Library [This book was discussed by the Just Desserts mystery fiction discussion group in February 2012. Click the link to find out what books we're discussing at upcoming meetings!]

[If you enjoy this, you may also wish to try the other works of the mother and son writing team of Charles Todd.]

[Also available in downloadable E-book and Large Print formats.]

[ official An Unmarked Grave page on the official Charles Todd web site ]

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