The Shadow of Memory

Crooked Lane. (Kate Hamilton Mysteries, Bk. 4). May 2022. 352p. ISBN 9781643859088. $26.99. M
Following a hen party, American antiques dealer Kate Hamilton walks two friends home, but finds a body in the graveyard. She also finds a note with the name and address of one of those friends, Vivian Bunn. The body is identified as Will Parker, a retired police detective; 58 years earlier, at 17, Will was Vivian’s first romantic crush at a British holiday camp. Along with three other teens, they spent the week spinning stories that would account for the murders at an abandoned house. It’s Kate’s trip to a former sanatorium, Netherfield, that links the two locations and a mystery from half a century ago. The board of Netherfield hope to sell a painting by Jan van Eyck at auction to raise needed money, but Kate has doubts about the work. While she waits for authentication of the painting, someone is tracking down the teens, seniors who once gathered evidence at the house now owned by a Netherfield board member. Is there any other reason these seniors are now targets of a killer?
VERDICT Well-developed characters, antiques and art, along with a riveting case with roots in the past elevate this traditional mystery. The sequel to The Art of Betrayal is a seamlessly plotted mystery for fans of English puzzles.
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