Today, Jean of mommytotwoboys.com joins us again as a guest reviewer. Jean is one of my favorite reviewers as she highlights quotes just like I do.
Here’s Jean reviewing An Unmarked Grave by Charles Todd:
Apparently I jumped into the middle of this series, because a British gentleman at the library I work at let me know the book would have been so much better had I read the Bess Crawford series in order. I wouldn’t have known, the book easily stands alone. This series, and Charles Todd’s Inspector Ian Rutledge series, were in his words, “Taking Britain by storm!” Surprisingly, the author is a mother and son team, Charles and Caroline Todd, check out their great website, http://charlestodd.com
In An Unmarked Grave, Bess Crawford is a battlefield nurse in 1918, aiding wounded soldiers as well as patients sick with Spanish Influenza. When Bess discovers an old family friend among the dead awaiting burial, who appears to have been murdered, she sets off to find answers. As she investigates, others who were pertinent to the truth end up dead and Bess realizes her own life is in danger.
I really enjoyed some thrilling and tense moments in the book. The characters are well developed, even without having read the first two books in the series. I especially liked Bess since I could relate to her, she was realistic, and a very strong female lead character. One of my favorite qualities of books is confident, tenacious leading women. A few Bess Crawford quotes demonstrating her strength:
“I can’t do as I did at eight, I can’t open the closet door and see for myself that no monsters live inside.”
“We were all so young, I thought as we drove away, the men who came to us and the sisters who treated them. I had seen and done things that my grandmother would have wondered at, but I had also discovered that courage was the ability to face what had to be faced, when it was impossible to run away.”
The majority of mysteries I’ve read in the past have overused dated phrases repeated incessantly throughout the book. However, An Unmarked Grave forced me to think and I had to consult my dictionary 4 times while reading, always a big plus for me! It was nice to read a mystery that wasn’t predictable, cheesy, or cliche. An Unmarked Grave was a smart, thrilling, fast paced mystery with realistic, likable characters.
William Morrow provided a review copy of this book. All opinions are those of the reviewer.
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