RitualsArcheologist Digs Up Murder Mystery

4stars

By Mary Anna Evans
Poisoned Pen Press, $24.95, 286 pages

Faye Longchamp has taken the job of identifying and cataloging the contents of a private museum in the small historic New York town of Rosebower. Located near Seneca, it has long been involved in the Spiritualist movement. Though Faye doesn’t believe in ghosts, she can’t resist an invitation to a seance rendered by eighty-something Tilda Armistead, reputed to be able to talk to the dead.

Soon after Faye leaves Tilda’s historic home, she finds out Tilda is dead and her home burned. While struggling to finish her work at the museum, Faye cannot help but become involved in the mysteries swirling around Rosebower. Tilda’s elderly sister, Myrna, inherits all of Tilda’s considerable assets, to the surprise of Tilda’s daughter and son-in-law. Soon after, it becomes apparent that Myrna is slowly dying. Meanwhile, a rich developer wants to buy Tilda’s land to open a resort catering to tourists hoping to contact their departed loved ones.

Evans is able to draw the reader in and make Rosebower and its inhabitants feel real. They are fascinating, charming and quirky. The story, written from the view-point of two different people, gives a diverse view of events while being easy to follow and highly enjoyable.

Reviewed by Fran Byram

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