Be glad in the Lord and rejoice! Psalm 32:11

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Christmas Book Review - A Christmas Homecoming by Anne Perry

Today's holiday reading selection is an interesting period history from acclaimed mystery author Anne Perry.

About The Book:

Among the brilliant array of Anne Perry’s New York Times bestselling novels, her Christmas stories occupy perhaps the warmest spot in the hearts of readers. Each one is a masterpiece of suspense; each is alight with the true holiday spirit.

In A Christmas Homecoming, a familiar face from the Charlotte and Thomas Pitt novels—Charlotte’s mother, Caroline—travels with her young husband, Joshua Fielding, and his theatrical troupe to Whitby, the Yorkshire fishing village where Dracula the vampire first touched English soil in the sensational novel named after him. Joshua has arranged to produce a stage adaptation of Dracula by the daughter of Whitby millionaire Charles Netheridge during the Christmas holiday, but after the disastrous first read-through of her amateurish script, only the fact that the company is depending on Netheridge’s financial backing for their spring tour keeps them at work. 

As tempers flare and wind and snow swirl around Netheridge’s lonely hilltop mansion, a black-cloaked stranger emerges from the storm—an eerily opportune arrival, for this enigmatic figure, one Anton Ballin, turns out to be a theatrical genius. At the same time, a brooding evil makes itself felt. Instead of the theatrical triumph that Netheridge desired for his daughter, there is murder—shocking and terrifying.
Anne Perry’s ninth Christmas novel keeps us poised on a razor’s edge of suspense, hypnotized by a story in which the heartwarming power of goodness is challenged by the seductive power of inner darkness. In the end, A Christmas Homecoming lifts the spirit and rejoices the heart.

This was a different Christmas story. While it is set during the Christmas season, there is no celebrating going on in this tale.  If you are familiar with Anne Perry's characters from her Charlotte and Thomas Pitt novels, you will find the story of Charlotte's mother Caroline very interesting. But if you haven't read any of the previous Christmas novels or Pitt novels, then you might be at a bit of a loss as to who's who, and what is going on.

I thought the story of the theatrical cast gathering for a trial run of a play based on Bram Stoker's "Dracula" novel to be fascinating, and the mystery that is connected to the story is stirring and intriguing. But as far as being a Christmas story that "lifts the spirits and rejoices the heart" (as is described in the above description) - well, not so much. But, to each his or her own.  Fans of Perry's work will love this short, but interesting continuation of the characters she is so well known for.

I recieved a copy of this book from the publisher for review. I was not compensated for my opinion.


Mary (Bookfan) said...

I haven't read any of Perry's books - not sure I'd start with this because I read Christmas-themed books to relax and get me in the spirit - and this doesn't sound like it would. Thanks for your honest review, Sharon.

Mystica said...

I have read and reviewed several of her books - this is a new one for me.