Lessons In Trust: A Cambridge Fellows Mystery No.7, by Charlie Cochrane
An absolutely must read
Book blurb: When Jonty Stewart and Orlando Coppersmith witness the suspicious death of a young man at the White City exhibition in London, they’re keen to investigate—especially after the cause of death proves to be murder. But police Inspector Redknapp refuses to let them help, even after they stumble onto clues to the dead man’s identity.
Orlando’s own identity becomes the subject for speculation when, while mourning the death of his beloved grandmother, he learns that she kept secrets about her past. Desperate to discover the truth about his family, Orlando departs suddenly on a solo quest to track down his roots, leaving Jonty distraught.
While Jonty frantically tries to locate his lover, Orlando wonders if he’ll be able to find his real family before he goes mad. After uncovering more leads to the White City case, they must decide whether to risk further involvement. Because if either of them dares try to solve the murder, Inspector Redknapp could expose their illicit—and illegal—love affair.
Review by Gerry Burnie
I say with great regret, for the genuine enjoyment I have missed, that “Lessons in Trust” by Charlie Cochrane [Samhain Publishing, 2010] is the first of the “Cambridge Fellows Mysteries” I have read. Fortunately it is not the first of Ms Chochrane’s stories I have reviewed, for “Sand,” (her contribution to the “Last Gasp Anthology”) holds that delightful distinction. Nevertheless, Lessons in Trust gives a much broader picture of her remarkable talent, and it has left this particular reader yearning for more of the same.
The book blurb quite adequately covers the story outline, and so for my part I will ‘read between the lines,’ so to speak.
The early 1900s was an interesting and colourful era with vestiges of Victorian stodginess reluctantly giving way to what would soon become the “Flapper” generation. In between were bright, ‘modern’, fashionable young men like Jonty & Orlando, with a foot in both generations. The common ground was style, and these two—from quite different backgrounds—had it in spades.
What delighted me about this read is that the author has been able to capture this with remarkable credibility: Victorian correctness mixed with a ‘bending of the rules’ (correctly, of course); a begrudging acceptance of the motor car (but properly dressed for the occasion); and wit and scintillating conversation to carry it all off.
The mysteries are truly mysteries, too, and will leave any reader turning pages. I guarantee it.
A must read. Five stars.
Progress report, re: Coming of Age on the Trail. I’m happy to say that the first draft is finished and heading for the editors desk. Probable release date: January. 2011.