Warner, 2003 (2003)
Hardcover, Audio, CD
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Reviewed by Sally Selvadurai
is a murder mystery set in the New England town of Manchester-by-the-Sea, an old-world, wealthy haven known for its conservatism and snobbery. This was the place that Frances Pratt visited during her childhood summers, to join her cousins Penelope and Hope, her Aunt Adelaide and Uncle Bill Lawrence. Those were wonderful days for Frances and her now deceased sister, within the bosom of a seemingly perfect family.
aving not been back to Manchester-by-the-Sea for many years, Frances is thrilled to receive an invitation to Hope's marriage to John James Cabot III (Jack to all, and, judging by the very name, heir to one of the oldest and wealthiest families in the area). Just before the wedding takes place, a relative dies terribly and Frances determines that she absolutely has to find the answer to the question '
' She unearths some deep and nasty skeletons from her own family's closet and her faith in many that she admired is shattered beyond recourse. As the story unfolds, we begin to understand the humanness behind the wealth and privilege of the Manchester society. Though its secrets and prejudices are revealed as equal to, or worse, than those of any other community, the overriding rule is to always keep silent.
ancy Geary's latest novel was a very enjoyable read. Though it did take a while to sort out the characters and get to the
, it was worthwhile because we were well introduced to the main protagonists in the book. Towards the end, this novel was a real page-turner and the conclusion was both a surprise and revelation. Good summer reading.
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