The Smile of a Ghost : Merrily Watkins

  • by Phil Rickman
  • Narrated by Emma Powell
  • Series: Merrily Watkins
  • 15 hrs and 54 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Ludlow: Exquisite medieval streets, an imposing ruined castle and a weight of history and legend. Wealthy, famous people come here to live. A sad teenage boy comes here to die...dramatically, at sunset, in a fall from the ruins. Accident or suicide? Either way, no great mystery. Or is it?
Robbie Walsh was the nephew of former Detective Sergeant Andy Mumford, who calls on Merrily Watkins when his ailing mother becomes convinced that she’s still seeing her dead grandson in the town. Merrily, parish priest, single mum and Deliverance consultant to the diocese of Hereford, is likely to know if his mother’s problem is dementia, delusion or something even more disturbing.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Ghosts Past, Ghosts Present and Ghosts Future

DS Andy Mumford has reached forced retirement age for someone of his rank in the Police-- 50 years old. He is very unhappy about it, especially when looking at his ex-copper father's retirement and his mother's slide into dementia. His parents live in historic Ludlow which is fast gentrifying.

Meanwhile Diocesan Exorcist Merrily Watkins finds herself being pushed into a working relationship with Canon Sian Callihan Clark who resents her because Merrily was not part of the first group of feminists who fought for the right of women to become priests and psychiatrist Nigel Saltash whose interest in Merrily's vocation are not immediately clear although he does trust psychiatry more than religion.

Meanwhile Lol and his relationship with Merrily has become the target of an anonymous letter campaign.

Then Mumford's nephew, Robbie, dies in a fall fromLthe ruins of Ludlow Castle, maybe as the result of an attack or maybe suicide or maybe related to the ghost of a young woman who is said to haunt the castle. And what was the role played in his death by the mysterious punk gothic singer Belladonna, who has recently made Ludlow her home.

Not my favorite Merrily, but a good story that kept me enthralled for the entire 15+ hours and also provides some information about the darkest hours of Lol's life.

If you want to hear the songs referenced in the book as by Lol Robinson go to Amazon and download Songs from Lucy's Cottage. It really is worth a listen.

Oops, almost forgot to add, the Emma Powell does her usual excellent job of narration.

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- Sires "I like mysteries (particularly British ones, historical fiction and nonfiction, science fiction and fantasy."

Ghost or Not?

One of the things I like best about Phil Rickman is his ability to walk the line between the supernatural and the mundane, all in the setting of a bucolic English countryside. He also understands the deep influence religion has upon us, whether or not we are "believers," predisposing us to accept or reject the supernatural, while the truth may lay somewhere in between. Perhaps that is "The Smile of a Ghost" referred to in the title. Another great installment in the Merrily Watkins mystery series.
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- Diane

Book Details

  • Release Date: 02-24-2014
  • Publisher: Isis Publishing Ltd