August 23, 2011
A Bitter Truth by Charles Todd
Title: A Bitter Truth
Sub Title: A Bess Crawford Mystery
Publication Date: 2011
Source: Book Browse Uncorrected Proof
The setting for this story is during World War I in London, England. The heroine is Bess Crawford, a battlefield nurse. During one of the coldest winters London has seen in a very long time, Bess encounters an emotional lady with a black eye on her doorstep. By nature, Bess cannot turn her away. But , litttle does Bess know about the trouble she was inviting into her life. By befriending this lady, Bess' life became very complicated. This one good deed takes Bess to a remote, spooky town where she gets tangled up in several murders.
Lydia, the lady that Bess had helped has a wealthy husband named Roger. Lydia and Roger live in a huge house with his family. It turns out that the black eye Lydia has, came from her wealthy husband and the reason she was on Bess' door step is because she was running from him. Lydia convinces Bess to go back home with her because she thinks if she tells Roger that she was with a friend, that maybe Roger will not be as angry as if she had just ran away from him. So, Bess ends up with this complicated family in a spooky town, in a scary house. It becomes even more scary when a family friend is murdered near the house and Bess and Roger's Mother finds the dead man. The family is already trying to get over the loss of two family members, so this death adds to their grief. When it seems they are beginning to accept the death of the family friend, there is another death. This time it is the family Doctor and he is found on their property.
Bess is caught up in this families problems and even becomes a suspect in the murders. To clear herself and find the murderer, Bess has to go to France. All of this is happening at the same time that the War is raging. In France, a beautiful orphan child is rescued from a fire by one of Bess' patients. This child becomes a very important part of the murder mystery.
This is a wonerful mystery that will keep you guessing until the very end. I had no idea who the bad guy was until the end, which is the way a good mystery shoud be.