A Dream of Death, by Connie Berry (Crooked Lane Books, 2019)
A remote Scottish island. A private hotel steeped in history. And a repeat of a centuries-old murder.
This is the sort of mystery I love best. The setting is so real I can almost step into it, and I liked the protagonist, Kate Hamilton, from page one. Kate deals in antiques, not crimes, but she has a good eye for detail and strong motivation to solve this mystery. The company of an attractive, vacationing English police detective is a bonus.
The language is engaging. My favourite lines:
Three years had passed since Bill’s death, and the veneer of coping I’d laid over my grief was as thin as eggshell porcelain and every bit as breakable. [page 1]
Guthrie sat between his mother and Elenor, looking as if his license to exist had just expired. [page 29]
How many minutes, hours, days had that old clock marked? Years rolled by, then decades and centuries, and every morning the hands of the clock turned anew, as if it were possible to record over the failures and griefs of the past. [page 64]
A Dream of Death is the first book in the Kate Hamilton Mystery series, and I’m eager to read book two, A Legacy of Murder.
Connie Berry is an American author who writes this Scottish setting like it’s one she knows well. For more about the author and her work, visit connieberry.com.
[Review copy from the public library.]