On a remote Scottish island, American antique dealer Kate Hamilton sleuths a killing that eerily replicates a murder still unsolved after 200 years.
Autumn has come and gone on Scotland's Isle of Rothsay, and the locals gather for the Tartan Ball, the annual end-of-tourist-season gala. Among the invited guests is American antique dealer Kate Hamilton. Returning to the island where her husband died is brutal, but Kate is determined to repair her relationship with her sister-in-law, Elenor Spurgeon, the proprietor of Rothsay's deluxe country house hotel.
Kate has hardly unpacked when a body turns up, murdered in an eerie recreation of an infamous unsolved murder two hundred years before. And the only clue to the killer's identity lies in a curiously embellished antique casket. When Bo Duff, the gentle handyman who had tried to save Kate’s husband's life, is taken into custody, she teams up with vacationing Detective Inspector Tom Mallory to clear Bo’s name. To accomplish that, they’ll have to unmask a killer who seems bizarrely fixated on the past…because two hundred years is an awfully long time to hold a grudge in A Dream of Death, the tantalizing series debut by Connie Berry. (Summary via Goodreads)
A Dream of Death by Connie Berry is her debut novel in the Kate Hamilton Mystery series and I have to jump to the end of the book and start this review off by saying...... The way that Berry leaves the reader in this first book will have us longing for the next book in this series !!!
A lot goes on in A Dream of Death.... You travel along with Kate as she returns to her deceased husband's home on a Scottish island at the request of her sister-in-law, Elenor. She returns to the house her husband and sister-in-law grew up in that Elenor has converted into a elaborate hotel with cottages. Elenor requested that Kate come because she was afraid of something and knew that she could count on Kate to help her. Unfortunately Elenor refuses to tell Kate anything until after the Tartan Ball which is a big after season celebration. Elenor also tells Kate to read a book, The Diary of Flora Arnott written by a local on the island and will discuss everything at a later date. Before Kate can even begin to read the book, Elenor is found dead. Kate and the only other guest of the hotel, Tom Mallory, find themselves drawn together to try to solve Elenor's death and when a local man Bo is taken in for the murder, Kate finds herself doing whatever she can to prove his innocence. Kate knows that there is no way that Bo would harm anyone but trying to get the police to listen to her falls on deaf ears....even with the help of Detective Inspector Mallory on her side.
I loved A Dream of Death for so many reasons. I love that there were murders from over 200 years ago factured into the present story and that families were still there on the island and linked together. I loved picturing the hotel and the cottages and the surrounding areas. I loved the budding relationship that was beginning between Kate and Tom. I loved the mystery and story behind the hotel and how things from the past kept creeping into the story....... Berry, in my opinion, has a GREAT start to a captivating series and I look forward to returning to Kate's life and seeing what develops......
Review by Missi S.