THIS SIDE OF MURDER (September 26th 2017 by Kensington) is the first novel in the Verity Kent Mystery series by Anna Lee Huber.
The Great War is over, and Verity Kent is trying to find a place for herself as a young war widow. When her husband’s friend and his fiancé invite her to an engagement party, Verity is reluctant to accept until she receives a cryptic message insinuating that Sidney might have committed treason before he was killed while fighting in the trenches. Verity travels to Umbersea Island to attend the engagement party and to delve deeper into the slanderous claims against Sidney. Also in attendance at the party are a number of men whom Sidney served with. Two of these former soldiers turn up dead – and someone who everyone thought was dead turns out to be alive. As a storm ravages the island and keeps the revelers trapped, Verity investigates what really happened in the trenches and is forced to confront the fact that her husband might not have been the man that she thought he was.
I was absolutely captivated by THIS SIDE OF MURDER. Verity Kent is a strong female lead, and she is very likable and relatable. I feel like we have only seen the tip of the iceberg with her character. As a former Secret Service agent, there is so much to still learn about her character. She got to experience both sides of the war – as a wife and sister waiting for her men to come home as well as a Secret Service agent who knew more about the war than the average citizen.
The storyline was very complex and (mostly) had me guessing up until the end. There were a number of exciting twists and turns throughout the novel. The fact that the motive for the murders goes back to the war and involves treason and betrayal was fascinating. Huber did a fantastic job bringing to life the time period by including the lingo, fashion, and facts about the war.