Julia and her brothers Lysander and Eglamour - Plum - are summoned home from Italy by their father, the Earl March. They arrive in time to spend Christmas at Bellmont Abbey, the family seat. However, before the festivities can begin, there is a murder. As with the previous volume, the book introduces other members of the eccentric March family, this time on home turf. And course Nicholas Brisbane is back, and he is engaged to be married.
Julia quickly realizes that Brisbane and her father are up to something. What, she doesn't know. But before she can learn anything, a guest is murdered -- supposedly by one of the March cousins -- and the earl informs Brisbane that Julia will assist in the investigation. Though the March family is used to being the subject of gossip and scandal, the earl wants the matter wrapped up -- while they are snowed in -- as quickly and as discretely as possible. Brisbane isn't happy with these arrangements, but he can't contradict a nobleman in his own home.
I don't want to give anything away, so I won't elaborate on the plot. Julia does learn something of Brisbane's past, however. I wish there had been more interaction between them. It seemed as if Brisbane was barely in the book. As for the March family, I really enjoy meeting them and hearing about their eccentricities. Above all, they are a very close and loving family.
I enjoyed this book and I'm looking forward to Silent on the Moor, due out in March 2009.
Now I was more certain than ever of my decision. I could never love a man who did not love Jane Austen.
-- Julia's thoughts
Started: 1 November 2008
Finished: 11 November 2008
Disclaimer: I purchased this book.