Paging the Dead by Brynn Bonner (Gallery, March 2013)
Sophreena McClure is a professional genealogist who not only puts together family trees for her clients, but helps find family secrets, piecing together people’s pasts and then scrapbooking the history as a memento and record; all of this is done with a little help from her business partner Esme whose special gift, receiving messages from long dead relatives and often is able to help Sophreena fill in the gaps. Currently, the pair is tracing the family history for Dorothy Pritchett Porter, one of the descendants of the founding fathers of Morningside. Dorothy plans to display the completed scrapbooks at the upcoming Founders’ Day celebrations, but is found strangled before the memory books can be completed. Now Sophreena and Esme have to turn their investigating skills to a family tree that has roots so deep and tangled that the history of a town may be turned on its ear and someone may be willing to kill in order to keep these secrets hidden. A good blend of genealogy, scrapbooking and local history, Paging the Dead introduces a pair of amateur detectives with a sense of history and curiosity and a lot of heart and compassion for their clients.