BOOK REVIEW: DISTURBING THE DEAD
What happened to Pauline McClure? This question has long been the mystery of Mason County, a small rural community in the foothills of Virginia's Blue Ridge. Pauline was a wealthy widow who just vanished from her country estate and was never seen again.
Now Captain Tom Bridger is leading a search party on a mountainside where a skeleton has been found. When Tom locates the skull he feels sure that it must be that of Pauline McClure. Tom's father, John Bridger, had spent many, many hours on the case without locating Pauline or any clue as to what happened to her. Now Tom is determined to get to the bottom of this mystery. Before the search ends Tom and his deputies uncover a second skeleton and skull. To the best of Tom's knowledge only one person has gone missing and that is Pauline McClure. Who could the second skull be and why is it there on the mountainside? That is the question that Tom sets out to answer.
Rachel Goddard is the local veterinarian. She has moved to the area to escape events in her past that haunt her. Tom is very much attracted to Rachel. Rachel is attracted to Tom but feels she cannot act on that attraction until she has settled some things from her past.
When Tom goes to inform Pauline's family that her remains may have been located he meets her niece Holly. Holly loves animals and seems to have a way with them. Tom suggests to Rachel that Holly might make a good assistant for the clinic. Rachel agrees and hires Holly but soon finds that her family is not in favor of Holly leaving home and working for Rachel. Rachel's act of hiring Holly and having her stay with her has put Rachel in the face of immediate danger.
It becomes evident soon that Holly must have some clue to the violence that occurred when she was small. She has constant nightmares and members of her family are worried she will tell tales.
Tom and Holly are both Melugeon. This is a term I was not familiar with until I read this book but found it very interesting. Evidently if you had Melugeon blood people looked down on you in this small community.
I haven't read Sandra Parshall's The Heat of the Moon but I do intend to get it read as soon as possible. I want to know more about Tom and Rachel and the area Ms. Parshall writes about.
REVIEWED BY PATRICIA REID
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