Saturday, November 10, 2012

Review - Aunt Dimity Beats the Devil

Title: Aunt Dimity Beats the Devil
Author: Nancy Atherton
Publisher: Penguin Books (October 1, 2001)
Format: Hardcopy; Pgs 256
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Source: Library
Series: Aunt Dimity #6

When this book came up in a reading group, I was sure that I had read it, I love this series so when I went looking for my review, I could not find it anywhere. I was beginning to wonder if I had unwittingly skipped it.

As soon as I finished the first chapter I knew the story, well, I thought I did. The beginning was familiar, the middle was a mystery, but the ending relit the dim bulb that I am now calling my mind and I am glad that I had reread it to remind myself how far Lori has come.

Lori will always be attracted to men other than her husband, that does not mean that she would have disavowed her marriage, but what is a woman to do when there are attractive men coming to her aid and young (and old) love is in the air.

Lori has been called in to evaluate a rare book collection at Wyrdhurst Hall located in the middle of nowhere Northumberland. Knowing Lori’s sense of direction and driving ability is sketchy at best; the reader is not surprised to find Lori leaping out of her yellow Hummer just as it is being washed away in a torrent of water. What does surprise is that as Lori stumbles to safety and passes out just as she find a cabin, we next find her waking up naked in a strange man’s bed.

Being a Nancy Atherton book, we know that whatever Lori has gotten herself into is somewhat chaste. Lori does have a tendency to find perfect gentlemen that would never take advantage of the situation, but does not mean that she will not have some explaining to do.

Newlyweds Nicole and Jared Hollander own Wyrdhurst Hall, a hall that is bound by mystery and ghosts. What at first blush appears as unsettled spirits looking for a little excitement is actually much deeper, and much more dangerous. Lori find letters dating back to World War I that spell out a doomed love affair. An affair that was manipulated by a mentally deranged man that would have done anything to keep an unworthy suitor from his daughter.

As the story plays out, with the help of Aunt Dimity, Lori finds the secrets and in a netherworld conclusion, doomed lovers are reunited and a family haunted by its tragic past can now rejoice in a new and growing love.

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