Jump to ratings and reviews
Rate this book
Rate this book
Faye Longchamp’s new archaeological firm has landed a project in St. Augustine, Florida.  In four centuries, America’s oldest city has accumulated skeletons that should probably stay buried.  Within a day of Faye’s arrival, a woman disappears, leaving behind blood, priceless artifacts, and a note asking for Faye's help.  The detective hires Faye to find the artifacts’ origin. But the ghosts of the Ancient City are demanding masters, and Faye is also driven to uncover their secrets--until it becomes clear that what they seek is Faye herself.  And her child...

311 pages, Hardcover

First published May 27, 2010

Loading interface...
Loading interface...

About the author

Mary Anna Evans

31 books329 followers
Mary Anna Evans is an award-winning author, a writing professor, and she holds degrees in physics and engineering, a background that, as it turns out, is ideal for writing her new book, The Physicists' Daughter. Set in WWII-era New Orleans, The Physicists' Daughter introduces Justine Byrne, whom Mary Anna describes as "a little bit Rosie-the-Riveter and a little bit Bletchley Park codebreaker."

When Justine, the daughter of two physicists who taught her things girls weren't expected to know in 1944, realizes that her boss isn't telling her the truth about the work she does in her factory job, she draws on the legacy of her unconventional upbringing to keep her division running and protect her coworkers, her country, and herself from a war that is suddenly very close to home.

Her crime fiction has earned recognition that includes the Oklahoma Book Award, the Will Rogers Medallion Awards Gold Medal, the Mississippi Author Award, a spot on Voice of Young America’s (VOYA) list of “Adult Mysteries with Young Adult Appeal,” a writer’s residency from The Studios of Key West, the Benjamin Franklin Award, the Florida Historical Society’s Patrick D. Smith Florida Literature Award, and three Florida Book Awards bronze medals.

In addition to writing crime fiction, she writes about crime fiction, as evidenced by the upcoming Bloomsbury Handbook to Agatha Christie, which she coedited with J.D Bernthal.

For the incurably curious, Mary Anna’s first published work, her master’s thesis, was entitled A Modeling Study of the NH3-NO-O2 Reaction Under the Operating Conditions of a Fluidized Bed Combustor. Like her mysteries, it was a factually based page-turner but, no, it’s not available online.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MaryAnnaEvan...

Twitter: @maryannaevans

Instagram :https://www.instagram.com/maryannaevans/

BookBub: @maryannaevans

Ratings & Reviews

What do you think?
Rate this book

Friends & Following

Create a free account to discover what your friends think of this book!

Community Reviews

5 stars
174 (29%)
4 stars
276 (47%)
3 stars
107 (18%)
2 stars
20 (3%)
1 star
5 (<1%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 58 reviews
Profile Image for ✨ Gramy ✨ .
1,382 reviews
October 27, 2019
This book was based in St. Augustine, Florida. There is abundant curiosity and intrigue surrounding archaeological digs to preserve the historical artifacts. The was an absorbant amount of emphasis was placed on Fay's pregnancy status.


Faye Longchamp and husband Joe Wolf Mantooth have founded an archaeological consulting firm—just in time for the economy to tank. But a meeting with a couple who run an elegant B&B in a historic home in St. Augustine, Florida, lands the firm's first big project. Within a day of their arrival at Dunkirk Manor, a lovely young employee disappears, leaving behind a sinister smear of blood in her car, a collection of priceless artifacts, and a note asking for Faye's help. Two days later, the missing woman's boyfriend is found floating in the Matanzas River, his throat slashed. The detective in charge of the case believes that the artifacts are key to the crime and hires Faye to track down their origin.

The artifacts Faye and Joe excavate at their worksite date from every era of St. Augustine history and the discovery of a buried cache of children's toys from the 1920s hits eight-months-pregnant Faye particularly hard. Dunkirk Manor seems haunted in a way that Faye can't explain.

Then a stunning discovery is made: the diary of a priest who left Spain in 1565 and was present at the city's birth. Faye is driven to translate the manuscript. In what could be an unfolding tale by the Brothers Grimm, Faye and Joe uncover some terrible secrets....

The interweaving of historical facts made the events portrayed very plausible. There was plenty to keep the reader interested in the main story, as well as the inclusion of the ancient writings of the priest.

Suzanne's role in aiding the recovery of the victims and looking out for Victor was impressive and noteworthy.

I would definitely recommend this series to anyone interested in archeology and mystery. I read this book on loan from my local library system.


(Faye Longchamp Series Book 6)
by Mary Anna Evans (Author)
Page Length: 320 Pages



"This contemporary mystery is drenched with Florida history and with gothic elements that should appeal to a broad range of readers."

Profile Image for Sue.
1,227 reviews526 followers
January 10, 2013
I do enjoy this series and have been happy to get a few for kindle. My reading has been a bit out of order so there are a couple I need to catch up on but the series combines two favorites, mystery and archaeology. This particular episode, read while I have a horrible cold, helped me weather the malady. And thankfully my head cleared a bit tonight as I finished so I didn't miss any of the multiple threads being tied up.

The basic plot involves a heavily pregnant Faye Longchamps-Mantooth and her husband Joe undertaking a dig on the grounds of a turn of the century mansion-turned-bed-and-breakfast in St Augustine, Florida. As always, I am not going to go further into the plot except to say it kept me interested during a couple of sleepless nights (for which I am very grateful) and I intend to read those episodes I've missed.

There is quite a bit of history of the area provided for those who enjoy that with their mysteries.
Profile Image for Dorothy.
1,330 reviews90 followers
October 15, 2022
Somewhere between the last book that I read in this series, which was number 3, Effigies, and this book which is number 6, archaeologist Faye Longchamp completed work on her Ph.D. and she and her assistant/lover Joe Mantooth got married. As this book opens, we learn that the now-married Faye is eight months pregnant with their first child.

We also learn that Faye and Joe have established a new archaeological firm and that their firm has just been selected for a project in America's oldest city, St. Augustine, Florida. Four hundred years have given the city a lot of history and a lot of artifacts and skeletons to explore, and Faye is eager to get on with that exploration.

But soon after Faye's arrival on the scene, a woman from the archaeological team disappears. A trail of blood at the scene fuels fears for the woman's safety and her survival. The scene is also littered with priceless artifacts, and the detective in charge of the case hires Faye as a consultant to discover their origin. The plot thickens when, two days after the woman disappears, her boyfriend's body is found floating in the Matanzas River. His throat had been slashed.

Among the artifacts that Faye discovers is the diary of a priest who had left Spain in 1565 and was present at the founding of the city of St. Augustine. She sets about translating the diary. Her translation is intermingled with the telling of present-day events. The story is presented in rotating chapters from the present day and then a chapter of the translated diary. Over the course of the book, this adds clarity and depth to the story.

Quite a bit of the history of St. Augustine is interwoven into this story and I found that particularly illuminating. It definitely gave an extra dimension to the plot. Moreover, Faye and Joe are both interesting and likable characters and it is easy to root for them and to experience events through their eyes. This is a well-written series and I especially like the archaeological angle since archaeology has always been a keen interest of mine. I look forward to reading more about Faye and Joe and their exploits.
Profile Image for Shomeret.
1,041 reviews200 followers
May 1, 2012
I had read Plunder, the most recent book in the Faye Longchamp series, earlier this month. I remembered at that point that I hadn't yet gotten to this one. I consider Strangers a much better book than Plunder because the characters interest me more, and it's more thematically integrated. I very much liked the way Faye's pregnancy is braided together with other plot strands. This isn't my favorite of the series. That would be Floodgates. But it is very good.
Profile Image for Amy Ingalls.
1,045 reviews14 followers
December 22, 2021
I liked the background history of St. Augustine, Fl. in this book. I thought the reason behind Glynis's disappearance was believable, up to a point. The end, when Faye and Joe made me surprisingly emotional and happy for them.
384 reviews
August 25, 2014
Another enjoyable book in the Faye Longchamps series of books. In this installment, Faye and Joe own their own archaeological consulting firm and take a job at a gilded-age mansion in St. Augustine, Florida. Along the way, Faye is asked to evaluate a diary written by a Spanish priest who came to the New World in the sixteenth century. A very interesting look at the history of our country's oldest city.
Profile Image for Judy.
1,594 reviews26 followers
June 3, 2021
Love,love, love this series! Faye and Joe are in St. Augustine, Florida, working on excavating the grounds of an historic mansion. It’s exciting and scary as Faye becomes a victim. As always a great adventure!
Profile Image for Katie Oglesby .
337 reviews
June 11, 2022
This was only ok. It wasn't bad. It wasn't good. It was like one of those sitcoms you put on in the background to keep you occupied but you aren't overly invested. Yeah, like that. It was evenly paced, kind of Interesting, extremely predictable and had been sitting on my tbr for way too long. But now I know why. It was a time filler. I'm sure many others might find this superb but I've read many many many books way too similar. This is one of those template series where the author puts the main character in various locations doing various jobs but is there to solve a mystery. I thought this might have more history or a spark of creativity like Dan Brown novels. Nope. Oh well.
Profile Image for Kate.
1,810 reviews1 follower
March 25, 2022
"Flush with her brand new PhD, Faye Longchamp and husband Joe Wolf Mantooth have founded an archaeological consulting firm -- just in time for the economy to tank. But a meeting with a couple who run an elegant B&G in an historic home in St. Augustine, Florida, lands the firm's first big project.

"Within a day of their arrival at Dunkirk Manor, a lovely young employee disappears, leaving behind a sinister smear of blood in her car, a collection of priceless artifacts, and a note asking for Faye's help. Two days later, the missing woman's jerk of a boyfriend is found floating in the Matanzas River, his throat slashed. The detective in charge of the case believes that the artifacts are key to the crime and hires Faye to track down their origin.

"The artifacts Faye & Joe excavate at their work site date from every era of St. Augustine history, and the discovery of a buried cache of children's toys from the 1920s hits eight-months-pregnant Faye particularly hard. Dunkirk Manor seems haunted in a way that Faye can't explain.

"Then the most stunning discovery is made: the diary of a priest who left Spain in 1565 and was present at the city's birth. Faye is driven to translate the manuscript. In what seems like an unfolding tale by the Brothers Grimm, Faye and Joe uncover terrible secrets past and present."
~~front & back flaps

This book in the series is particularly scary. Faye is in serious danger, only it's not very evident until almost the end of the book. Then you look back and see how many time she came so close to that danger, and it makes your heart cringe.

The tale of Victor is particularly heart wrenching. Ninety years old, he's succumbing to old age and mental retardation, but has very clear memories of the past. Living in a very dilapidated old house, he seems bereft of the basic necessities of life, but he's an integral part of the mystery and its solving.

The ending is hair raising, but Joe and Faye have each other, and everyone else is also safe. I can't wait to read the next book in the series!
Profile Image for Gail Burgess.
453 reviews3 followers
March 30, 2021
Faye and Joe are back in Florida -- but on the east coast in St. Augustine! They now have their own consulting business and are expecting their first child. A couple who run a B&B have hired them to see what lies in their back yard in hopes of putting in a swimming pool for their guests. A young woman -- an employee at the B&B-- disappears a few days after they arrive. And a few days later the body of her boyfriend washed up. Because some artifacts were found near the missing woman's car, Faye is called in to consult with the local police. Meanwhile Joe is being extremely solicitous and Faye is tired much of the time--especially because she has found an old diary from the 16th Century and reads it when she should be sleeping.
Profile Image for Liz.
1,674 reviews7 followers
April 10, 2021
I barely made it through this one. The plot drags, there is an ancient diary that really adds nothing to the plot. Then there are some striking inconsistencies. Faye is now somehow able to be a consultant for the police department in her capacity as an archaeologist, but a homicide detective is showing her a dead body and asking her opinion on all aspects of the case. Not likely. Then throughout the whole story Joe barely lets Faye out of his sight to go to the bathroom, but somehow he lets her go off on her own in a house with a kidnapper. From the very beginning it is mentioned that Faye still has six long weeks of pregnancy to go and I knew immediately that she would be having that baby six weeks early, so no surprises there. Fortunately this was free from Audible.
Profile Image for Susan.
1,811 reviews17 followers
August 1, 2019
The setting is St. Augustine, Florida and Faye and her team are consulting on a historic house whose owners, Daniel and Suzanne Wrather, want to put in a swimming pool. In an attic, she discovers a journal from a priest who was one of the earliest Spanish settlers. Then Suzanne’s assistant, Glynis, disappears and things start to get complicated. As far as the archeology is concerned, this is one of the less exciting entries in the series and I did not care for the woman-in-peril plot.
Profile Image for Anita.
844 reviews2 followers
December 24, 2021
Intriguing continuation of this series as Faye and her husband Joe, friend Magda and crew are hired to work at a historic house in St. Augustine and find themselves embroidered in a murder mystery, a kidnapping and the the fascinating history of the house and city. Having lived in St. Augustine, it was extremely interesting to read this story and the many layers of history, just like the city’s history.
Profile Image for Terri.
1,921 reviews43 followers
February 4, 2018
Read a sequel first, and liked it much better. This one, I don't know, just drug. Difficult to get into the story. The 'book in the book' supposed to be written by a priest in the 1600's was unbelievable, the reason why the one pregnant girl disappeared, the the same thing happening to 2 other women (one pregnant, one with a child)...not so believable, either.
46 reviews1 follower
September 20, 2022
romance , action and murder, what more could you want?

Love this series and this book did not disappoint at all. Mix In archeology with the aforementioned triple threat and you have an irresistible read. Did I finish in one day ? You bet! Have I just downloaded the next one - of course!
Profile Image for Arizonagirl.
572 reviews
March 24, 2018
Faye Longchamp series, book #6. On Faye's first job as manager of an archeological field crew and while being 8 months pregnant, she and two other pregnant women are abducted by a crazed husband who wants to give his wife children that they are unable to have themselves.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Heather.
142 reviews1 follower
May 24, 2020
This is one of my favorites in the series so far. I love that it was set in St Augustine with a few ghost stories. Also it had a small side story of the first pandemic to hit the United States when England brought disease over to the native Indians of Florida.
131 reviews1 follower
July 7, 2020
Great series

I've read the books in this series with great pleasure. While reading about Faye's archeological endeavors, I've learned historical facts. And I've followed the relationship between Faye and Joe with much interest. I highly recommend these books.
Profile Image for Gwen.
90 reviews
March 20, 2022
oh, baby!

I like the series but wish there was more archaeological finds and less telling of the same information. Let the characters evolve more through dialogue and actions instead.
Profile Image for Lex.
872 reviews38 followers
May 1, 2018
Although these are murder mysteries this particular book by this author really affected me a lot more. It felt more dark and disturbing than the others.
141 reviews4 followers
November 19, 2019
I don't recall how I stumbled on this series, but I love it and I am not an easy catch.
Profile Image for Josephine.
2,060 reviews9 followers
December 24, 2019
An interesting story that I liked a lot. I am finding archaeology interesting, and can't wait to read the next book in the series.
Profile Image for Darinda.
8,062 reviews144 followers
February 7, 2021
The 6th book in the Faye Longchamp series. Faye and Joe work on an archaeological project in St. Augustine, Florida. Interesting characters. Enjoyable story.
Profile Image for Lis Carey.
2,148 reviews93 followers
January 20, 2011
This is Evans' sixth novel about archeologist Faye Longchamp and her husband Joe Wolf Mantooth. I haven't read any of the others, and didn't find it an obstacle to following and enjoying this story. Faye has turned her archeology degree into a business rather than a tenure-track teaching position, and she, Joe, and their employees, including Magda Stockard-McKenzie, Ph.D., are in St. Augustine, FL, excavating the back yard of the Art Deco-era mansion, Dunkirk Manor, whose current owners want to add a swimming pool. Dunkirk Manor is in a historically rather uninteresting section of St. Augustine, and it'a a relatively easy assignment, perfect for the last month or so of Faye's pregnancy. An unexpected bonus is the discovery, in a storeroom, of the journal of a priest, Father Domingo, who accompanied the first Spanish expedition to the St. Augustine area.

Or so it seems, at least until Glynis Smithson, assistant to the owners, Daniel and Suzanne Wrather, disappears. Her car is parked out back, there's some blood in her car and a lot more just outside it--and if there was any trail of blood leading away from the car, it has possibly been washed away by the automatic sprinklers. There are also a few odd items in and near the car, artifacts apparently dating to the 16th-century arrival of the Spanish.

Faye becomes involved in the investigation into Glynis's disappearance, which becomes a murder investigation when her boyfriend turns up dead, because of the archeological connection. At the same time, the excavation at Dunkirk Manor becomes more interesting, as they uncover evidence of a previous swimming pool, as well as buried 1920s-era children's toys in what looks very like a small shrine. As Faye learns more about both her employers and the 1920s owners, she discovers an unsolved murder of a beautiful starlet, and an odd parallel between Suzanne and her great-aunt Allyce Dunkirk, in that they both lost very young children whom they continued to mourn many years later. The archeological items and the fact that her boyfriend was murdered leads to the suspicion that Glynis was murdered or kidnapped because she discovered a construction project going forward illegally after discovering an unreported archeological site.

Faye divides her attention amongst the Dunkirk Manor dig, Father Domingo's journal, the unsolved murder, and Glynis's disappearance, and they all tangle together in unexpected ways. And when she gets too close to some of the answers, the situation turns dangerous, and she's fighting for her life against an unexpected villain.

I found Strangers engrossing and highly readable, and I'll probably be looking for more of Evans's books about Faye.

Note:: I received a free electronic galley from the publisher via NetGalley
534 reviews
June 16, 2011
I'm still loving this series. Faye and Joe are fun characters with busy lives and interesting careers. Faye finally has her Ph.D. and is now running her own archeology business with a sideline in police consulting.

Set in St. Augustine there is a lot of wonderful history woven into the mystery, making the whole story deeper and richer.

While examining a site for a rich couple who want to put in a swimming pool Faye and her team find some interesting items, some of which are very puzzling. When one of the couple's employees disappears and her boyfriend turns up dead, Faye is on the trail to find out what is going on behind the walls of the elegant mansion.

At just 5 weeks from full term with her baby, Joe is over solicitous, Magda is worse and the owners are even driving her crazy. Faye has to try and figure out what is going on, complete her survey for the mansion's grounds, and keep her baby safe.

Loved this, and the added story of translating a 1500's journal gives the rich history of St. Augustine and its role in the settlement of what is now the United States.
Profile Image for Barbara M.
1,034 reviews23 followers
March 10, 2016
As usual, an excellent romp through archaeology in the south. Faye Longchamp has her PhD and has started a private business with her husband Joe Wolf Mantooth. She's also very pregnant and will give birth in about 5 weeks so she's trying to do her job under difficult circumstances.

The best part of this dig, is that it takes place in St. Augustine FL and I've been there. Wonderful insight into the history of the city and lots of tension as Faye and Joe and the other characters get caught up in a mystery with a murder and possible kidnapping. Faye gets into a danger position (of course!) and Joe is trying to keep calm and rescue her and their soon-to-be born baby.

This one may be one of my favorites of the series. I just finished her previous one, Floodgates and thought that was a wonderful view of New Orleans, now I have this one set in St. Augustine - I'm not sure which is better. What a happy circumstance.
Profile Image for Jen.
625 reviews36 followers
July 23, 2015
A very pregnant Faye and Joe have started their own archaeological consulting business, and one of their first clients is a dream job - a dig in the backyard of an old mansion in ancient St. Augustine for bed-and-breakfast owners who want to dig a swimming pool there. Shortly after they arrive, the owners' smart, sweet, efficient assistant disappears...and it seems she was bringing Faye a note and some artifacts the morning she disappeared. As the days tick by, it becomes apparent that she must either be buried or held captive on the mansion grounds...which have already been searched thoroughly by the police. Where could she be? And will someone else be next?

One of my very favorites in this series so far. I always love the characters, and the history of St. Augustine in it was fascinating. The motive was not at all what I suspected, and therefore the culprit was not who I expected it to be. I only have 3 more before I'm done with the series so far - so sad!
Displaying 1 - 30 of 58 reviews

Can't find what you're looking for?

Get help and learn more about the design.