As usual I seem to be reading this series of mysteries in the wrong order but in The Lost Ancestor we quickly come to know the character of Morton Farrier, a clever forensic genealogist and his circumstances, living happily with his fiancé, Juliette in an old cottage in the centre of Rye. Written in the third person, the houses and villages visited by Morton are vividly described and his research is familiar to anyone following their family tree.
On this occasion, Morton’s client is a terminally ill man anxious to discover what had happened to his grandmother’s twin sister. In 1911, Mary Mercer, a lively, spirited girl had taken a job as a housemaid in the stately home of Lord Rothebone, for which she was totally unsuited. A few months later she disappeared, and no records of her whereabouts were found. However, in 1962 a message was written by Mary and left with a rose on her sister’s grave.
Morton is intrigued and works hard on the investigation, but other members of Mary’s family seem reluctant to help. The present-day heirs of Lord Rothebone at Blackfriars House seem more co-operative but there is soon evidence that Morton’s life is under threat if he carries on with the case.
This is an exciting, intriguing story told in dual time and I became involved in Mary’s happiness and tragedy as well as anxious for the safety of Morton and Juliette. A great read for the Christmas break.
Nathan Dylan Goodwin
Born in the famed battle town of Hastings, England, Nathan Dylan Goodwin has always had a passion for writing in one form or another. Having gained a 2:1 degree in Radio, Film and Television studies, Nathan went on to gain a Masters degree in Creative Writing, from Canterbury Christ Church University.
Nathan started his writing career with non-fiction, his first book ‘Hastings at War’ being published in May 2005. This was followed by three further local history books pertaining to the area around his home town of Hastings. His first forays into fiction writing culminated in the publication in 2013 of ‘Hiding the Past’ – a genealogical crime mystery novel.
In his very early forties, Nathan enjoys running, skiing, reading, genealogy, writing and time with his husband and son. That about sums it up!