Barbara’s rating: 4 of 5 stars
Series: Charlie Parker Mysteries 18.5
Publication Date: 3/23/20
Number of Pages: 114
I am so glad to have had another fast-paced, interesting, and exciting Charlie Parker Mystery to read. I was disappointed that Drake didn’t get more page time, but what he had was quality stuff. Charlie’s free-spirited Aunt Louisa, who conducts ghost tours in Bury St. Edmunds, England, is there to entertain us in Drake’s absence.
Our adventure all began with a message in a fortune cookie – “A Close Relative Needs Your Help.” Charlie normally doesn’t pay any attention to those messages, but this one is so different from the standard messages about coming into a fortune – well – she just can’t get it out of her mind. She calls her brothers and they are all hale and hardy and not in need of her help. Drake is right there with her and he doesn’t need her help. Who else is left? Ahhh – when she gets home, she has a phone message from her Aunt Louisa in England. Could it be Aunt Louisa who needs her help? After speaking with her aunt, who says she definitely doesn’t need any help, Charlie still decides to go for a visit – because it will be fun even if her aunt doesn’t need help.
Charlie and Louisa have several fun-filled days in London before heading on to Louisa’s home in Bury St. Edmunds. Louisa has to get back to work, so Charlie has days free to explore the picturesque little town. She explores until a skeleton is found during an excavation at a quaint little tea shop where Charlie is enjoying a break. Ever curious, Charlie can’t let the mystery rest. There is nothing to identify the body – nothing – how did the poor man come to be where he was? Where is his family? Who is he? Was he there because of an accident or foul means?
Charlie tells herself she’s only digging into it because the police are otherwise occupied and this case is at the bottom of their list. Then, she finds the clues that surely identify the body – and – that person has ties to her Aunt Louisa. Charlie is sure she has to solve the case and find who murdered the man before she leaves England or Aunt Louisa could become the prime suspect. However, Aunt Louisa isn’t exactly forthcoming about the man nor their relationship. Oh! My!
It seems nobody wants to talk about the man who was found. He was an American, a drifter, a ne’er-do-well, a womanizer, a – well a great many other things. Can Charlie find the clues to solve this thirty-year-old case?
I thoroughly enjoyed this mystery, even though the solution just sort of popped out of thin air.