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A Question of Honor: A Bess Crawford Mystery    by Charles Todd Amazon.com order for
Question of Honor
by Charles Todd
Order:  USA  Can
William Morrow, 2013 (2013)
Hardcover, e-Book
* * *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

When I opened the newest mystery by Charles Todd, I fluffed the cushions of my favorite chair, poured a glass of summer wine, and settled in to thoroughly enjoy A Question of Honor. My expectations were high and they were met and then some.

World War I Nurse Bess Crawford manages to spend her few (and far between) respites from nursing the wounded to investigate five murders that happened ten years before. At the time, as a child, she lived with her parents when, in 1908, her father's regiment was stationed in India. A member of the regiment was accused of murders five of them! Two were of his own parents!

Bess finds it hard to understand that the soldier she knew as a child could be the dangerous killer he was believed to be. He escaped from India through the Khyber Pass into Afghanistan. Certain that he could not have survived the journey into the Pass, Bess, ten years later, is shocked to have recognized this same man whom she had known as a child. She believes he is one of the patients under her care. He disappears once again.

The plot thickens. Questions are asked. Is this disappearing man the same one accused of five murders? Is he guilty of the murders? If not, who is? And the big question, why were these people murdered?

Bess manages to squeeze time out of her many crossings from France taking the injured and those suffering from influenza, to England, to dig more deeply into what she now believes might be a search for an innocent man. Bess and Simon manage to discover some of the fugitive's background and piece together a sad childhood for him.

The mother and son team using the name of Charles Todd as author, have done extensive research. It's almost hard to believe they weren't actually in India in 1908. Or in the trenches in France during World War I. They could have suffered influenza as did so many dying of that insidious disease all over the world. They write so knowingly of that period of time.

For pure enjoyment, read A Question of Honor as well as the other four in this series. Also check out the Ian Rutledge series. I not only have read all of both series but own them also. Each in its own right is well worth the time spent on them.

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