Who should have the Brenton medals?
It was almost too easy . . .
Old certainties prove to be anything but as genealogy sleuth Lydia Silverstream responds to a dying man’s plea. Her work, her home, her stuttering relationship, even her skills as a researcher, all the familiar patterns are disrupted, leaving her with more challenges than ever. And why won’t a mother tell her son who his father is?
It all goes to show, as always, there’s so much more to a family’s history than the certificates would have you believe.
Askance is delighted to have published the third novel by DJ Wiseman and the second in the Lydia Silverstream series. Lydia Silverstream first appeared in A Habit of Dying, one of the first novels to set a mystery in the context of family history research. The story has found wide appeal, far beyond the world of the genealogy. The Subtle Thief of Youth, his second novel which is a more traditional crime puzzle, gives a disturbing insight into the workings of a small community when a summer downpour reveals a grotesque secret hidden for years.
DJ Wiseman has also published short stories and edited the Homes and Positional Vertigo anthologies for Askance.
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TITLE: The Death of Tommy Quick And Other Lies
AUTHOR: DJ Wiseman
As a bit of a family history sleuth myself, I began this book with the idea that I would find lots to criticise, that there would be inaccuracies in the details of research. Well, reader, I didn’t. The author knows her stuff and is writing from obvious experience of seeking, gathering, collecting, collating information about people and their lives. The curiosity that is sparked by a tiny bit of mystery is perfectly captured and the stories unfold and conclude in a real way, not smooth and pat as real life rarely is. A very enjoyable and intelligent read. I too have uncovered a story in my researches that is almost breath taking in its twists,turns and intrigues, now if only I could write like that . . . Amazon reviewer
This is a wonderful book. I greatly enjoyed A Habit of Dying, the first book to feature Lydia Silverstream but the follow-up, The Death of Tommy Quick and Other Lies, is astonishingly good!
Many genealogical mysteries have multiple threads, so that we can be a fly-on-the-wall as the events that are being investigated take place – but whilst it’s a great way to bring the story to life, it doesn’t accurately reflect what it’s like for the investigator. In The Death of Tommy Quick we see everything through Lydia’s eyes, so it’s much more realistic – and, like us, she has other commitments and roles to play, as an employee, a colleague, a partner…. the way in which her relationship with Stephen develops is beautifully handled.
And, as so often happens in real life, the initial investigation warps into something completely different – Lydia starts out by trying to return a set of Great War medals to the soldier’s family, but in the process she makes one discovery after another, so that before long we’ve forgotten about the medals (although, to her credit, our heroine never does). – Peter Calver of Lost Cousins