A Duty to the Dead : Bess Crawford

  • by Charles Todd
  • Narrated by Rosalyn Landor
  • Series: Bess Crawford
  • 9 hrs and 49 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

The daughter of a distinguished soldier, Bess Crawford follows in his patriotic footsteps, volunteering to serve her country as a nurse during the Great War. In 1916 she promises Lieutenant Arthur Graham that she will carry his dying request to a brother.When Bess arrives at the Graham house in Kent, Jonathan Graham listens to his brother's last wishes with surprising indifference. Neither his mother nor his brother Timothy seems to think it has any significance. Unsettled by this, Bess is about to take her leave when sudden tragedy envelops her. She quickly discovers that fulfilling this duty to the dead has thrust her into a maelstrom of intrigue and murder that will endanger her own life and test her courage as not even war has.

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What the Critics Say

"Todd employs all the elements of a satisfying cozy mystery, with an absorbing plot and a charismatic heroine that will leave the reader wanting more." (Library Journal)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Terrific period mystery

History lovers will revel in the period details of this mystery set during WWI. Bess Crawford, a nursing sister in the medical corps, becomes involved more and more deeply in the family of a soldier whom she nursed til his death from sepsis. Failing to keep up her shield of professional detachment, her heart aches as she brings his last request to his family. From life onboard a troop hospital ship to life in the English countryside during wartime, the descriptions ring true both historically and emotionally. Well done indeed. The descriptions of Shell Shocked soldiers foretell our generation's PTSD. Can't wait to read more of Bess.
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- Anne

Strains Credulity

At first Bess Crawford seems to be a likable heroine, and this book has an exciting and intriguing beginning.

But, as the book goes on, the reader is taken into an increasingly unlikely story. Bess appears in a place where she has no credible reason to be (her family is surprisingly accepting and absent) and up to her ears in a mystery which the the listener/reader has figured out after a couple of chapters.

I've read one other entry, and this series is a complete miss. Try the Inspector Ian Rutledge books by Charles Todd instead. I have really enjoyed those. If you are interested in a nurse's view of the WWI time period, try Jacqueline Winspear's Maisie Dobbs series.
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- C. Telfair "Audible has changed my life! Dry , itchy eyes were destroying one of my greatest pleasures - reading. Now I am experiencing books again!"

Book Details

  • Release Date: 09-02-2009
  • Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.