Strange Children

Strange Children

by Kate Charles
     
 

Friendless and virtually an orphan, Tessa craves a husband and a baby; above all, she wants to be loved. When her on-and-off lover Ian leaves her for the last time, Tessa embarks on a whirlwind romance with Rob Nicholls, and at last her dreams seem set to come true. Now married to the perfect man, and with a baby on the way, Tessa looks forward to getting to know

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Overview

Friendless and virtually an orphan, Tessa craves a husband and a baby; above all, she wants to be loved. When her on-and-off lover Ian leaves her for the last time, Tessa embarks on a whirlwind romance with Rob Nicholls, and at last her dreams seem set to come true. Now married to the perfect man, and with a baby on the way, Tessa looks forward to getting to know her new mother-in-law. But before that can happen, Linda Nicholls is murdered and Tessa desperately needs to know why. Her quest for answers plunges her into a world of secrets, where nothing is as it seems, and her own life and the life of her unborn child are in mortal danger. A chilling tale of murder, blackmail, and perversion.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Charles (Unruly Passions; Evil Angels Among Them) departs from her popular series of ecclesiastical mysteries with this peculiar tale of blind love and murder set in contemporary London. When meek and gangly Tessa Rowan attends her ex-lover's wedding, she is startled to find herself seated next to Rob Nicholls, the bride's ex-boyfriend. Tessa and Rob hit it off, and even though Tessa knows very little about this charming, enigmatic man, she marries him a mere two weeks later. It is only after Tessa is several weeks pregnant that she begins to wonder about Rob's past namely, why he hates his mother so much. Finally succumbing to Tessa's excessive pleas, Rob agrees to accompany her to his mother's house where, to Tessa's horror, they find the woman brutally bashed to death. The police suspect Rob of matricide, but a disbelieving Tessa sets out on her own to try to clear her husband. Readers will follow Tessa's dogged search with barely contained anticipation as she struggles to uncover the nature of her stepmother's elusive "business." In addition, a solid cast of supporting characters including an oddly secretive priest, a guileless hospital porter and a warmhearted pregnant friend adds richness to the story. Although Tessa's submissiveness may prove annoying at times, Charles's intricate plot and simple yet colorful prose will captivate. (June 15) Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
When Amanda and Ian ditch their mates and marry, the lovelorn Tessa and Rob solace and wed each other, and plan to live happily ever after-until Tessa decides to become pregnant. Appalled for reasons he won't specify (although he does shout, "You'll be a MOTHER!"), Rob stops sleeping with Tessa and reignites his relation with his ex while his forlorn wife, estranged from her cleric dad and missing her own long-dead mum, tries to establish contact with Rob's mother, Linda. At first furious, Rob agrees to meet Tessa at his parents' home, but by the time they arrive, someone's bashed poor Linda's head in with that staple of the British mystery, a fireplace poker. Although Rob still refuses to discuss why he loathes his mum, and the police seem to be making no headway in her murder, Tessa ferrets around, discovering that Linda may have been a prostitute, a madam, or something even worse. Certainly Linda's chief mourners-a banker, a hospital porter, a copper, a wealthy entrepreneur, and a vicar-all share an embarrassing secret, and blackmail potential. The vicar will be coshed with a sacred antique statue, and Tessa will be pushed down the stairs, before a former coworker and friends from a neonatal clinic save the day, if not Tessa's marriage. Charles, admired for her ecclesiastical mysteries (Evil Angels Among Them, 1995, etc.), tweaks the clergy for their emotional reserve, lays on the psychological suspense and neurotic compulsions, and offers a vade mecum to first-trimester pregnancy.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780751525427
Publisher:
Little, Brown Book Group
Publication date:
04/28/2000
Pages:
404
Product dimensions:
4.32(w) x 6.98(h) x 1.06(d)

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Meet the Author

Kate Charles lives in an overly large Victorian house with her husband and their Jack Russell terrier. Her favourite hobby is visiting churches. She has been chairman of the Crime Writers' Association.

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