An annual treat, declared "The Wall Street Journal" of Anne Perry's Victorian-era holiday mysteries. Now she continues this magnificent tradition with "A Christmas Garland, "a yuletide tale set in exotic India. This time the mistress of mystery tells the story of a terrible crime that sets the stage for another: accusing an innocent man of murder.
The year is 1857, soon after the violent Siege of Cawnpore, with India in the midst of rebellion. In the British garrison, a guard is killed and an Indian prisoner escapes, which leads to yet more British deaths. Cries for revenge are overwhelming. Despite no witnesses and no evidence against him, a luckless British medical orderly named John Tallis is arrested as an accomplice simply because he was the only soldier unaccounted for when these baffling crimes were committed.
Though chosen to defend Tallis, young Lieutenant Victor Narraway is not encouraged to try very hard. Narraway's superiors merely want a show trial. But inspired by a soldier's widow and her children, and by his own stubborn faith in justice, Narraway searches for the truth. In an alien world haunted by memories of massacre, he is the accused man's only hope.
The trial of John Tallis equals the white-knuckle best of Anne Perry's breathtaking courtroom dramas. And thanks to a simple Christmas garland and some brilliant detective work, Narraway perseveres against appalling odds, learning how to find hope within himself and turn the darkest hour into one full of joy and light.
PRAISE FOR THE CHRISTMAS NOVELS OF ANNE PERRY
A Christmas Homecoming
Could have been devised by Agatha Christie . . . Perry is] a modern master. " Pittsburgh Post-Gazette"
Vastly entertaining . . . uplifting and thought-provoking by turns. " The Star-Ledger"
A Christmas Odyssey
Perry] writes with detail that invades the senses. " Lincoln Journal Star"
A Christmas Promise
Poignant . . . should be on the Christmas stocking list of anyone who likes a sniffle of nostalgia. " The Washington Times"
A Christmas Grace
A] heartwarming, if crime-tinged, complement to the holiday season. "Booklist"
A Christmas Beginning
Intriguing . . . Perry's use of period detail is, as always, strong and evocative. " The Seattle Times.
About the Author
Anne Perry is the bestselling author of two acclaimed series set in Victorian England: the Charlotte and Thomas Pitt novels, including Buckingham Palace Gardens and Long Spoon Lane, and the William Monk novels, including Execution Dock and Dark Assassin. She is also the author of a series of five World War I novels, as well as seven holiday novels, most recently A Christmas Odyssey, and a historical novel, The Sheen on the Silk, set in the Ottoman Empire. Anne Perry lives in Scotland.