First print-published by Five Star/Gale in 2009
Beneath the hanging tree…
Witches weren’t burned in colonial Virginia. They were hanged. But in the twenty-first century no one should be hanged from the trees of historic Williamsburg. Not even batty conspiracy theorists, however much Jean Fairbairn’s significant other, ex-Scottish cop Alasdair Cameron, might sometimes wish he could pass judgement. Especially when said dingbats may be involved in the theft of a Williamsburg-crafted replica of a sixteenth-century Witch Box, stolen from a Scottish castle for which Alasdair has been supervising security—even though the original Witch Box is safe in a Williamsburg museum.
The Charm Stone went missing from the original Witch Box three hundred years ago. Perhaps it
was not a traditional healing stone at all but a cursing stone. Perhaps it was lost somewhere in
the colony of Virginia. Perhaps someone will kill to find it.
Can Jean maintain her resolve to abandon the academic battlefield forever, or will she be
tempted back into combat by an appealing former colleague, Matthew Frost? And what about
Alasdair, who is supposedly retired from the rigors of law enforcement, but who is now
confronted not only by a theft but two murder cases—and by Stephanie Venegas, the detective in
Amid the falling leaves and autumn shadows, Jean and Alasdair must deal again with murder most grotesque, its roots deep in history and myth. With ghosts only they can see. With things going bump in the night of their own relationship.
It’s All Hallows Eve in historic Williamsburg, Virginia
About the Author
After starting out in science fiction and fantasy, Lillian Stewart Carl is now writing contemporary novels blending mystery, romance, and fantasy, along with short mystery and fantasy stories. Her work often includes paranormal themes. It always features plots based on history and archaeology. While she doesn’t write comedy, she believes in characters with a sense of humor. Her fantasies are set in a mythological, alternate-history Mediterranean and India. Her contemporary novels are set in Texas, in Ohio, in Colonial Williamsburg, Virginia, and in England and Scotland. Of her Shadows in Scarlet, Publishers Weekly says: "Presenting a delicious mix of romance and supernatural suspense, Carl (Ashes to Ashes) delivers yet another immensely readable tale. She has created an engaging cast and a very entertaining plot, spicing the mix with some interesting twists on the ghostly romantic suspense novel." Of her Lucifer's Crown, Library Journal says: "Blending historical mystery with a touch of the supernatural, the author creates an intriguing exploration of faith and redemption in a world that is at once both modern and timeless. Among many other novels, Lillian is the author of the Jean Fairbairn/Alasdair Cameron cross-genre mystery series: America’s exile and Scotland’s finest on the trail of all-too-living legends. Of The Secret Portrait, Kirkus says: Mystery, history and sexual tension blend with a taste of the wild beauty of the Highlands. Of The Burning Glass, Publishers Weekly says: "Authentic dialect, detailed descriptions of the castle and environs, and vivid characters recreate an area rich in history and legend. The tightly woven plot is certain to delight history fans with its dramatic collision of past and present." With John Helfers, Lillian co-edited The Vorkosigan Companion, a retrospective on Lois McMaster Bujold’s science fiction work, which was nominated for a Hugo award. Her first story collection, Along the Rim of Time, was published in 2000, and her second, The Muse and Other Stories of History, Mystery, and Myth, in 2008, including three stories that were reprinted in Year's Best mystery anthologies. Her books are available in both print and electronic editions, and her web site is http://www.lillianstewartcarl.com