Defend and Betray by Anne Perry
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
This book was a little more obvious that the others I have read. A man is murdered and his wife immediately confesses to his murder and offers no defense. It seems that she is shielding someone, but whom? It appears that it may be her fiesty daughter who has quarreled with him, but she can’t possibly have done it. In fact, the wife is the only one who could have done it, but why? Even in jail, she won’t tell her lawyer anything or help in her defense.
William Monk is brought in to determine what is going on and Oliver Rathbone takes on her case. Hester Latterly can move freely through the house and is best placed to find out what the poor woman is hiding. It doesn’t take long for Hester to find that the General was not what he seemed to be and that something has been very wrong in this household for a very long time.
I really enjoy these characters more than in the Charlotte and Thomas Pitt series even though I like them all. Hester is a likeable because she stands in stark contrast to the world she lives in. Her experience in the Crimean War with Florence Nightengale has given her experience and confidence mixed with quite a lot of outspoken brashness. That is what grates on the nerves of William Monk and yet, he values her help in getting vital evidence within the families.
Then there is poor William Monk who was in a terrible carriage crash and woke up not knowing anything about his past. As he tries to gain knowledge through observations he begins to learn that he was not a very admirable person although no one can say that he was not an excellent detective. Snatches of memory come back and he spends part of each book tracking down his clues to his own identity.
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