It is 2001 and the police constable’s girlfriend is murdered in a fit of jealous rage. When the constable realizes what he has done, he manages an elaborate cover-up. Only one person knows the truth.
Flash forward to 2012. Anne Brown is still running her late uncle, Bill Darby’s, detective agency after spending four or five years as his assistant. One day, the postman delivers an eleven year-old letter. The letter is addressed to her uncle from a woman named Carolyn Jollimore. She says she has evidence about a murder and begs for help from Darby. But Bill Darby is dead. And when Anne looks up the letter’s author, she finds that Jollimore too is now dead. Troubled with the evidence at hand, Anne must decide if she should investigate this eleven-year old murder.
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“Skillfully weaving this mystery with aspects of Anne’s (Brown) personal life, from a romantic entanglement to adolescent woes of her teenage daughter, Martin conjures an absorbing tale that has excitement and soul in equal measures.”
– Melissa Munro, Publishers Weekly
“This book literally took me by surprise! It felt like it started a bit slowly … Then … bang! Before I knew it I was hooked as the pace was quickening between Anne’s work life, home life and love life. I loved the introduction of so many characters, and the way they wove together was brilliant.”
“The beginning of this book … pulled me I right in. The Dead Letter by Finley Martin opened with an affair, a pregnancy, and a murder all in one chapter. The first chapter leaves the reader with a string of questions just waiting for the book to answer.”
“Finley Martin has chosen has chosen … the real Landscape of Charlottetown and Stratford to set a story with people who could indeed be real – complete with flaws … Against this he has been able to tell a story which has a plausibility to it. He tells the story very well and all the readers of the panel shared their desire to read it at a single sitting – a good mystery novel does that and this is a very good novel. For these reasons the Panel has agreed that The Dead Letter should be on the short list for the P.E.I. Book Award for fiction.”
– Jurors remarks, Prince Edward Island Book Awards.