Sunday, May 5, 2013

Guest Post & Review - Whispered Truth by M.M. Hall

Guest Post - Inspiration To My Writing by M.M. Hall

As of now, I write two different series—YA paranormal, and historical British mystery. As you might imagine, they are both quite different, so the inspiration for my writing comes from very different sources. For the YA series, it's almost limitless— from places I've visited and things I've experienced to articles I've read. Sometimes it's as simple as an unusual name. Other times it's a picture or an image on television, or the Internet, or in books. Even the weather can inspire me! A foggy, drizzly day (a rarity in Colorado) conjures up all sorts of images and intriguing scenarios. Music also plays a big part. It helps to create a mood or scene in my head, enabling me to bring it to life on the page. I have a very strong belief in the power of the imagination. The world is full of infinite possibilities, both seen and unseen, and it is that belief—the belief that there is more than the human eye can see, or the logical mind can explain—that is at the root of my writing. There is no greater question, or beginning, than, "What if…"

When it comes to writing an historical mystery, the process, and the sources of inspiration, are very different. The series takes place in 1911 London, which is a fascinating time to begin with. There was so much changing taking place—political, economic, industrial—it's easy to find any number of topics to draw upon and weave into the story. The challenge is in remaining historically accurate while driving the plot forward.

But above all, my greatest inspiration is a desire to tell a story. And, hopefully, do it well.

Whispered Truth
by M. M. Hall
Inspector Hargreaves Mystery, Book 1 

Publisher:  Molly M. Hall
Release Date: March 25, 2013
Book: Historical Mystery/British
Length: 314 Pages

Buy Links: 
Amazon Print     Kindle       B&N

Book Description

In 1911, England hovers on the cusp of change. A new king waits to be crowned. Women and the poor are fighting for their rights. Political turmoil rages throughout Europe. And a promising young artist lies dead in the heart of London.
Just another tragic death in a city filled with untimely demises. Or so thinks Hargreaves, the gifted, but troubled, Detective Inspector called in to investigate. Haunted by the tragedy of his own past, he is unprepared for the onslaught of long-buried memories and powerful emotions the case brings. Making his task even more difficult is the troubling presence of Daisy Cartwright, a wealthy widow closely connected to the victim, and a woman he feels inexplicably drawn to.

Untangling the tightly woven threads connecting the victim and the suspects, Hargreaves soon reaches a conclusion, only to have that theory shattered by the revelation that everything he has been led to believe is a lie. Groping through the silence and secrets, he uncovers a cold-blooded killer, and a connection to his own past that leaves him reeling.

My Review 

A murdered artist, a rich society widow, and a Scotland Yard detective take center stage in M.M. Hall's
Whispered Truth.  While not completely an Anglophile, I will admit to a fondness, and weakness, for British inspired television shows and mysteries.  Whispered Truth more than satisfied my craving with well developed characters, an interesting mystery, good dialogue and a well paced plot.  I found myself continuously turning the pages to discover what was going to happen next.                                     

After having completed the notes on his most recent case, Detective Chief Inspector Hargreaves plans to settle in for a good night's rest.  Before he can even manage to fall asleep, he finds Sergeant Bailey on his doorstep summoning him to a new case.  Eugene Evans, an artist, was murdered during a high society dinner taking place at a Lord Sebring's house.   While Hargreaves is not surprised at a murder taking place among the wealthy, he is surprised by his reaction to Daisy Cartwright, a wealthy widow and guest at the dinner, and a close friend of the victim.

Gathering clues for his investigation, Inspector Hargreaves soon realizes this won't be an easily solved case.  Misdirection and lies abound from the start.  Just as he reaches one conclusion, other clues are revealed which point him in a different direction.  Adding to his confusion and stress, Daisy Cartwright, refuses to stay out of his investigation.  She has little faith in the police and is determined that her friend's death will be solved and the guilty brought to justice.

Still suffering from grief over her husband's death, Daisy Cartwright can't believe another person she knows has died.  Determined to get justice for her friend, Daisy decides to conduct her own investigation, with or without the inspector's approval and cooperation.  Soon she too realizes an unusual connection and even a slight attraction to the inspector. 

Ms. Hall does a wonderful job developing both Inspector Hargreaves and Daisy Cartwright's characters; both are smart, loyal and dedicated to discovering the truth.  While they come from different backgrounds, and mingle in different social circles, they both appreciate art, literature and the comforts of friendship.  They also share a mystery in their past; they just don't know what it is.  A mystery we discover roughly a little over halfway into the book and which brought tragedy into both of their lives.  

Ms. Hall  also does a good job of providing us with a picture of a society changing around them; the changing political culture, the changes being brought about in medicine by those concerned with the poor, and the women's suffrage movement as it was gaining strength and power.  Changes that will no doubt make a large impact on both of their lives.  Though we also get to see how greed, wealth and one's social standing, continues to play a part in everyone's life.  

As both Inspector Hargreaves and Daisy gather clues, two more victims become a part of the case.  When the Inspector gathers the final clues, courtesy of information he gathered from Daisy, he uncovers the identity of a cold blooded killer, who intends to make Daisy the next victim.

Will Inspector Hargreaves be able to save Daisy before it's too late?  And just what is it that ties Hargreaves and Daisy's tortured pasts together?  You'll have to read Whispered Truth to find out.  I really enjoyed this  first book in the Inspector Hargreaves Mystery series and can't wait to read the next book.  

My Rating:  5 out of 5 Crowns and a Recommended Read

FTC Disclosure:  I received a complimentary copy of this book as a part of a book tour in exchange for a fair and honest review. 

1 comment:

  1. Thank you so much for your incredible review, Maria! I am truly thankful. Your time and input are greatly appreciated!!