Mary's Reviews > A Duty To The Dead

A Duty To The Dead by Charles Todd
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Jul 23, 09

bookshelves: adult-books
Read in July, 2009

After her hospital ship, Britannic, is sunk off the coast of Greece, Elizabeth (Bess) Crawford returns to England to recuperate from her broken arm, and await the orders for her next posting. She realizes after this frightening event that something might happen to her in the war that would prevent her from fulfilling her promise to a young soldier, Arthur Graham, who died while she was caring for him, and who asked her to bring a message to his brother Jonathan. Although she has delayed carrying out this duty, while she is in England, she travels to Owlhurst, where Graham's family lives to bring the message. When it seems that the family may not choose to honor Arthur's wishes, Bess cannot help but investigate the circumstances to see if she can ensure that whatever must be "set right" will be. This is a WWI era mystery similar to Jacqueline Winspear's Maisie Dobbs series or Laurie R. King's Mary Russell/Sherlock Holmes series. Besides Bess, Charles Todd introduces her loving and supportive parents. Her father, who is affectionately called Colonel Sahib, is retired from the army. His aide, Sergeant Major Simon Brandon also seems charged with looking out for Bess. The mystery works, the characterization is strong and Charles Todd (a mother-son writing team) leaves us wondering what else we may discover about Bess in future books.
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