Publishing year: 2009
Last night I started the second book of Josephine Tey mystery series.
We re-encounter some of the characters we met in the first book. Inspector Penrose is in the estate of his family in Cornwall with his cousins, and they attend a funeral of a young man, Henry Pinching, who drowned in the lake when he and his horse fell into it. During the funeral this death is believed to have been an accident, but from the prologue I suspect that it was murder, and when Henry’s sister collars Penrose and tells him she needs to talk to him, I imagine that’s what she suspects too. Josephine arrives later as Penrose has invited her to spend the holidays in Cornwall.
We get to know some new characters. William Motley is Penrose’s uncle and the cousins’ father, and he runs the estate smootly. His brother Jasper is the vicar, and Penrose’s opinion of him is not favourable. He also remembers his late mother, and she didn’t have a good opinion of her brother either. Henry has two sisters: Morwenna, who is his twin sister, and Loveday, a fourteen-year-old girl, who is said not to be right in the head. Nathaniel Shoebridge is the curate and was friends with Henry, but in the last times that friendship cooled. At the funeral he takes the pulpit, but his words are cold and unattached as if he were talking about a stranger. Jago Snipe is the undertaker, and brother-in-law of the Snipe, the cousins’ cook and Penrose’s housekeeper, who we got to meet in the first book. Jago has a son, Christopher, who apparently has a thing for Loveday.
Even though I’ve just read very few pages, I find the new characters interesting, and since I already know a few familiar ones, it’s easier to get into the story this time. The title gets me thinking that one of the sisters is the one with two faces; I guess it might refer to good and evil, one external face and one hidden from everybody.