BIRTH MARKS by Sarah Dunant


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When sometime private eye Hannah Wolfe is hired to track down Carolyn Hamilton, a missing ballet dancer, it doesn't take her long to find discrepancies between Carolyn's innocuous postcards to her guardian and her disappearance from London months ago. In the meantime, though, Carolyn and her near-term fetus are dead, drowned in the Thames. A new, carefully anonymous client's commission to get to the bottom of Carolyn's death leads Hannah to the French estate where Carolyn took her last job for dying Jules Belmont, of Belmont Aviation, and his young wife Mathilde. There's need of further improbable channel-hopping and some detailed medical revelations, but strong plotting by Dunant (Snow Storms in a Hot Climate, 1988) makes it all worthwhile. Thoughtful, tough-minded Hannah compares herself to every detective under the sun but P. D. James's Cordelia Gray, whose fans should welcome her with open arms.

Pub Date: Oct. 13th, 1992
Page count: 240pp
Publisher: Doubleday