What a delightful Holiday Mystery! This is the first book in the Once Upon a Dickens Christmas series by Michelle Griep. This book is all about second chances. It is an easy read and I was able to easily read it in about 10 days taking my time. The chapters are short and are fun to read. Big print, too!
The tale starts in December 1850 introducing us to a young girl, Clara Chapman, with a broken heart headed to her old maid’s house on the outskirts of London. Clara has lost all her fortune and lives with her poor Aunt Mitchell until her brother George returns from America with employment for her to come.
For Christmas, there is a surprise invitation for Clara to visit the Bleakly Manor over the 12 Days Celebrations. However, Clara is hesitant due to her aunt’s poor health. Aunt Mitchell insists Clara goes to the Manor.
Once Clara arrives, she see no host and instead a quiet Manor with a few other people, who we soon learn are Miss Scurry, with her mice, and Mr. Minnow, who’s always calling Clara “My Pet”. Several other people soon arrive, but most unexpectedly is Benjamin Lane, her ex-fiance who has supposedly stolen her family health and left her at the altar on their wedding day. A heart breaking act! Will Clara survive the next 12 days with this man, whom she once loved. Will she find he is a different person? Will she forgive the past and learn to love again?
Benjamin Lane has lived the past 9 months in the Millbank prison as a convicted felon. The man has seen more of his share of dangers and cruelty. When he sees Clara among this crowd of strangers, he tries his chance on showing her that he is a changed man. Can Ben prove his case? Will Clara forgive him? Will they give each other a second chance?
Many risky events, mysteries, and more happen at Bleakly Manor in the next 12 days. Will all 7 people last the week, or will there be issues?
These questions will be answered in the book, but you’ll have to grab a copy for yourself. Here are some great locations to grab a copy.
Barnes and Noble: $11.13
I can’t close with out thanking Barbour Publishing for the complimentary book with no compensation and was under no obligation to post a review. 🙂 It was a delightful book!
Until next time, happy reading and welcome to the start of the holidays!