Today I have a review of this wonderful short story to share with you along with an extract. First of all let's take a look at the book...
DEATH OF A CUCKOO
BY WENDY PERCIVAL
Genre: Cosy Mystery
Series: An Esme Quentin Short Read
Release Date: 6 March 2017
A letter. A photograph. A devastating truth.
When Gina Vincent receives a letter of condolence from a stranger following her mother’s death, a photograph slipped inside reveals a disturbing truth – everything she’s ever known is based on a lie. Shocked and disorientated, she engages genealogy detective Esme Quentin to help search for answers.
The trail leads to an isolated and abandoned property on the edge of Exmoor, once the home of a strict Victorian institution called The House of Mercy and its enigmatic founder, whose influence seems to linger still in the fabric of the derelict building.
As they dig deeper, Esme realises that the house itself hides a dark and chilling secret, one which must be exposed to unravel the mystery behind Gina’s past.
But someone is intent on keeping the secret hidden. Whatever it takes.
I ran down the steps and squeezed my way down the slim passage. In the recess was a narrow door but it didn’t match the faded, peeling paint of the remainder of the house’s decoration. It was brighter, as though it had been protected from the elements. As I stepped closer, I realised that’s exactly what had happened. Under my feet were pieces of broken planking. Until very recently, this doorway had been covered by a decorative panel and disguised. So who had uncovered it? It couldn’t have been there at the viewing.
As soon as I read the description for this book I knew I would enjoy it. With the perfect combination of a mystery and delving into the past I couldn't put this book down. I loved the introduction of Gina and how she made her discovery then as she meets with Esme the story really gets going. You get a real feel for Gina's character as you see her world turn upside down. To know that people you love have hidden the truth from you must be a terribly hard thing to discover.
This story is a short read but there is so much packed into this book and it never once felt rushed. The plot held my interest throughout as Gina and Esme put everything together to uncover the truth. Anyone who loves history will be guaranteed to enjoy this story especially if you are a fan of genealogy. I love the way that Wendy Percival has written this story with brilliant descriptions of how Esme goes about uncovering facts and details.
It really was the perfect way to spend a couple of hours all the while keeping me entertained and I loved the mystery! This story has definitely got my attention and it will be a pleasure to read more books by Wendy Percival.
Death of a Cuckoo has a wonderful combination of engaging characters and an intriguing story!
Thank you to Brook Cottage Books and Wendy Percival for my copy. This is my honest and unbiased opinion.
Wendy Percival was born in the West Midlands and brought up in the Worcestershire countryside. After training as a primary school teacher she moved to North Devon in 1980 to take up her first teaching post and remained in teaching for 20 years.
An impulse buy of Writing Magazine inspired her to start writing seriously. She won Writing Magazine’s Summer Ghost Story competition in 2002 and had a short story published in The People’s Friend before focusing on full length fiction.
The time honoured ‘box of old documents in the attic’ stirred her interest in genealogy and became the inspiration for the Esme Quentin mystery novels Blood-Tied and The Indelible Stain. She is currently working on the third in the series, where the clandestine past of the Second World War provides the secret world into which Esme must delve to uncover the truth.
When she’s not writing fiction, Wendy conducts her own family history research, sharing her finds on her blog, www.familyhistorysecrets.blogspot.com.
Wendy lives in a Devon thatched cottage beside a 13th century church with her husband and a particularly talkative cat.
You can find more on her website www.wendypercival.co.uk.
Goodreads Author Page: http://bit.ly/2lhecIA