From Publishers Weekly
This brisk romantic mystery, set in post-WWI London, begins with a situation worthy of E.M. Forster as Evelyn Gifford and her family receive a visit from a nurse and a young boy who claim to be the wartime lover and child of Evelyn's late brother. Evelyn has little time to ponder the implications: a lawyer in training, she is pressed into service when her firm takes the case of a war veteran accused of murdering his wife and burying her body in the woods (along with all incriminating evidence). Evelyn believes in the man's innocence and tries to unearth new evidence that will exonerate him, but complicating her investigation are Nicholas Thorne, a handsome but engaged attorney whom Evelyn falls for, and the nurse, Meredith, who, having moved in with the Gifford family, begins to force Evelyn out of her settled existence. Despite these distractions, Evelyn doggedly follows a trail of clues leading back to a wartime coverup. In this determinedly old-fashioned novel of tangled mystery and morality, Evelyn makes for a smart and resolutely modest heroine. (Feb.)
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Even though the Great War is over, it still casts a shadow. Haunted by the death of her beloved brother, James, Evelyn Gifford leads a cheerless life. But though time seems to have stopped in the London house she shares with her mother, grandmother, and aunt, Evelyn has a career outside. As one of England’s only female attorneys, she has to work hard for acceptance and finally gets involved in two cases, one involving a mother trying to regain custody of her children and the other involving a veteran who is accused of murdering his wife. Then there is Meredith, the irrepressible young woman who shows up on the Giffords’ doorstep with a child she claims is James’ son. And a possible love interest presents itself in the person of another attorney, Nicholas Thorne. A lot of balls in the air, but McMahon does a superb job of juggling them all. Evelyn’s personal and professional struggles are convincingly rendered, and the period ambience and courtroom drama are equally satisfying. A thoroughly engrossing read that will appeal both as mystery and historical fiction. --Mary Ellen Quinn
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