Page Turners read Anne Perry’s Christmas Crimes in November and December. This 2-novella set includes A Christmas Garland and A Christmas Homecoming. I listened to the audiobooks which are offered separately. Both are historical mysteries, one set in India following the Rebellion of 1857, the other set in a manor house in northern England. The only things they have in common are the murders to be solved, the time of year– Christmas, and their Victorian era. Not particularly Christmas-y despite the timeframe, they are interesting mysteries to keep you engaged. I had not read Perry before, but she is a great favorite of one of our members. I found both books well-written and full of great historical details. The mysteries kept me guessing until the end. The narrators for the audiobooks were very good. Both books are recommended to those who like complex, historical mysteries and want a bit of the feeling of Christmas.
A CHRISTMAS HOMECOMING
Charlotte Pitt’s mother, Caroline, is spending the holiday with her young husband, Joshua Fielding, in Whitby, the fishing village where Dracula first touches English soil in Bram Stoker’s sensational novel. Joshua has arranged to produce a stage adaptation of Dracula, written by the daughter of millionaire Charles Netheridge, but tempers flare after a disastrous first read-through of the script. As wind and snow swirl around Netheridge’s lonely hilltop mansion, a black-cloaked stranger emerges from the storm. At the same time, a brooding evil makes itself felt, and instead of theatrical triumph, there is murder — shocking and terrifying.
A CHRISTMAS GARLAND
The year is 1857, soon after the violent Siege of Cawnpore, and India is in the midst of rebellion. In the British garrison, a guard is killed, a prisoner escapes, and a luckless medical orderly named John Tallis is arrested as an accomplice simply because he was the only soldier unaccounted for when the crimes were committed. Though chosen to defend Tallis, young Lieutenant Victor Narraway is not encouraged to try very hard. His superiors merely want a show trial. But inspired by a simple Christmas garland, and his own stubborn faith in justice, Narraway is determined to figure out the truth, despite the appalling odds. In an alien world haunted by massacre, he is the accused man’s only hope.
(I purchased the audiobooks from Audible. All opinions expressed are mine alone.)