Friday, April 13, 2018

Queen Anne’s Lace

QUEEN ANNE’S LACE by Susan Wittig Albert
◊ Series: A China Bayles Mystery, Book 26
◊ Hardcover: 304 pages
◊ Genre: Mystery, Suspense, Thriller
◊ Publisher: Berkley (April 3, 2018)
◊ Language: English
◊ ISBN-10: 0425280055
◊ ISBN-13: 978-0425280058


 A present day ghost leads China Bayles to a secret from Pecan Springs's past in this haunting mystery from New York Times bestselling author Susan Wittig Albert.

While helping Ruby Wilcox clean up the loft above their shops, China comes upon a box of antique handcrafted lace and old photographs. Following the discovery, she hears a woman humming an old Scottish ballad and smells the delicate scent of lavender....
Soon, strange happenings start to occur in Thyme and Seasons: misplaced items, a ringing bell, and the appearance of lavender sprigs in odd places. When a customer mentions seeing a mysterious woman picking flowers nearby and then suddenly disappearing, China must finally admit what Ruby has always known--their building is haunted. But by whom?
As China investigates, the tragic story of a woman in one of the old photographs unfolds. Annie Laurie was a young widow who'd lost both her husband and her child in the same day. She manages to survive through her lace-making business and finds happiness again only to have a suspicious death overshadow her new life.
China delves into Annie's century-old mystery and realizes that solving it could have unimaginable repercussions in the here and now.

An interest in herbs first drew me to the China Bayles Mystery series by Susan Wittig Albert. Great storytelling by Albert keeps me coming back for more and more.

QUEEN ANNE’S LACE, the latest installment in the series, is a prime example of Albert’s writing abilities. She combines mystery and a touch of the supernatural with family and friendship blends it into a story about the past and present for a tantalizing tale. The intrigue pulls you in quickly and the characters hold you spellbound until the very end.

Albert has created a protagonist and cast of supporting characters that are realistic and likable. They are easy for readers to relate to. Even though this is the 26th installment in the series, Albert keeps it fresh and inviting. She blends enough of the back story so that new readers aren’t left in the dark. At the same time, she doesn’t rehash events in such a manner that returning fans feel overwhelmed with the same old story.

Another interesting aspect of the story is the depth of research Albert does in order to feature herbs throughout the tale. There are even recipes included at the end using herbs.

Albert delivers another story that will tug on your heart strings and make you ponder what you would do if you were in China’s place.

Queen Anne’s Lace by Susan Wittig Albert, A China Bayles Mystery (Book #26), Berkley, @2018, ISBN: 978-0425280058, Hardcover, 304 Pages

FTC Full Disclosure – A copy of this book was sent to me by the publisher. However, receiving the complimentary copy did not influence my review. The thoughts are completely my own and given honestly and freely.

Thanks for stopping by. Have you ever picked up a book and read it, then discovered it was the latest in a series? Do you go back and read the earlier installments and/or keep going with any future books?

P.S. Hope you’re having a great and HAPPY FRIDAY THE 13TH!!


  1. It is a fun series isn't it. And you have reminded me it is a while since I have read any of it - goodness only knows how many I have to catch up on.
    I hope that the only black cats who cross your path today are friendly.

  2. This is such a great series, isn't it, Mason? Thanks for reminding me of it. I need to catch up on it, just like ELephant's Child...

  3. Yes, I have. And though I used to feel the need to go back and start with book one. I have since found that it was not always convenient so I would merely pick up what I could and enjoy the books individually. Am aware that some series build too much on one another to really be read as standalones.

  4. It amazes me how many books she has in this series - quite an achievement.

  5. Sounds like a well-written, intriguing book.


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