Time of Hope: An Inspector Nick Trevellyan/Allison Hope Mystery (Us)

Susan Kelly, Author Scribner Book Company $20 (0p) ISBN 978-0-684-19423-3
In their second appearance, following Hope Against Hope , Nick Trevellyan and Alison Hope find that the sleepy English village of Little Hopford is a hotbed of illicit activity--past and present. When sexually generous 19-year-old Frisco Carstairs is fatally strangled, local police inspector Nick knows who would have liked to have wrung the victim's neck: Dot Lawson, who was vehemently opposed to her son Ben's plan to marry Frisco. Yet inquiries into the private lives of the Lawsons (including Dot's husband, Sam, a petty thief) only cloud the issue. Then Molly Armitage, an elderly woman who Nick believes has deliberately obstructed his inquiries, is attacked and nearly strangled to death. Nick is equally stalled off the job as the fiercely independent Alison, who owns a software business, dismisses his marriage proposals while continuing to host an obnoxious houseguest, Londoner Ralph Squires, who is openly contemptuous of ``whatsizname . . . the country bobby.'' Blending mystery and romance and laced with humor, this portrait of English village life is a delight. In fact, its fluid narrative pace makes it easy to overlook the clues Kelly cleverly weaves into her brisk tale. Mystery Guild alternate. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 11/02/1992
Release date: 11/01/1992
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