A John Darnell Mystery, No. 2
By Sam McCarver
Signet - February 2000
ISBN: 0451199596 - Paperback

Reviewed by: Brenda Weeaks, MyShelf.Com
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Sam McCarver’s second mystery is even better than his first. It’s 1914, two years since John and Penny’s first mystery and their wedding. They are now about to take a trip on the infamous Orient Express for a never taken honeymoon and the investigation of a grizzly ghost haunting the train.

The first chapter catches the reader up on John and Penny. Once they get on the train, the writing takes on an Agatha Christie flair in introducing the passengers. There are a couple of spies, an heir apparent, an actress, a dancer, a fortuneteller, a budding mystery writer, and more. In the prologue, the ghost of a bloody woman appears. She frightens the woman in the compartment 7. John Darnell is called in to investigate. When everyone is on board, the married couple in the same compartment see the same woman a couple of times. Soon murders begin to happen, and John is investigating more than a ghost.

The mystery takes off immediately and never leaves the forefront of the story. The author leads the reader in different directions then points in one direction and solves the why and wherefores. This one is much better than his first. I really enjoyed the 1914 feel, the train setting, and the wonderful characters. The author ends the story by telling the outcome of all the passengers involved. It’s a great read.

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