Another Review at MyShelf.Com

Whispers Beyond the Veil
Change of Fortune #1
Jessica Estevao

Berkley Prime Crime
September 6, 2016/ ISBN 978-0-425-28160-4
Mystery/Paranormal/Amateur Sleuth

Reviewed by Laura Hinds


"Canada, 1898. The only life Ruby Proulx has ever known is that of a nomad, traveling across the country with her snake-oil salesman father. She dreams of taking root somewhere, someday, but, until she can, she makes her way be reading tarot cards. Yet she never imagined her own life would take such a turn..."

When this book came across my path for review, I took a look at the lovely cover, and promptly thought, “Oh, a historical mystery. Not my cup of tea.” Then, I read the blurb (above) and changed my tune immediately. I was intrigued and wanted to know more about Ruby and how her circumstances changed and what fate and fortune had in store for her.

Author Estevao is exceptionally skilled at drawing the reader into Ruby's story by setting an atmosphere that is both intriguing and intricate, with a delicate balance struck between the two. The details of Old Orchard Beach and its history provide a backdrop in which it is easy to envision the Hotel Belden, owned by Ruby's aunt Honoria, the ocean and beach nearby, and even the summer Indian encampment near where a new pier is being built.

The Hotel Belden is the summer residence of Spiritualists and guests seeking enlightenment. Since Ruby has a skill for reading Tarot cards and an intuitive inner voice which guides her, she fits right in. Unfortunately, Ruby has come with baggage, having run away from a deadly accident while traveling with her snake-oil salesman father. Will her past catch up with her? Or will she be able to start a new life?

After a guest is murdered, and Ruby is a suspect, she realizes she is going to have to investigate things for herself. Especially because one local policeman is against anything supernatural, and the others may be corrupt or downright evil.

Oh, how I love this book! I can't wait to see what happens in the next one and have high hopes that this will be a long-lived series. Ruby is far from a perfect heroine, but her imperfections make her all the more human. Aunt Honoria is a special character as well, and it looks like there may be romance on the horizon for Ruby as well. You might be surprised as to who the lucky man may be! She's also formed a couple of friendships, with many more to come, I'm sure.

I highly recommend this book to any mystery lovers who enjoy a trip to the past, a visit to the beach, and a healthy dose of the paranormal. This would be a fantastic book club selection and is appropriate for teens on up! I will be anxiously awaiting the sequel!

Reviews of other titles in this series

Whispers Beyond the Veil #1
Whispers of Warning #2


Reviewed 2016