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unwilling accomplice book coverReviewed by Caleb Shadis

An Unwilling Accomplice is the sixth Bess Crawford book and she just keeps getting better and better at sleuthing! This time around Bess is asked to accompany a wounded soldier to receive his medal from the king for a brave act that almost got him killed. The man seemed to be pleasant enough but even though he claimed Bess was one of the nurses who helped save him, she couldn’t place his face or his wound in her memory.

She does her duty, escorts the man and is with him in the presence of the king before bringing him back to the hotel. After settling him in and promising not to bother him much while his friends stop by and visit, she has a nice evening meal with Simon in the hotel restaurant. Against her better judgement she only checks on him twice before bed; she is under the impression that the soldier is still close to an invalid and is safe enough with minimal checks.

Her nice turn comes back to bite her. In the morning she discovers her patient must have left in the night and hasn’t returned. She hopes his friends just got him a little too toasted and are late getting him back. It soon becomes apparent that he’s not coming back at all, nor has he been checked into any of the area hospitals. This leaves Bess in hot water. She lost a patient who a couple days later is wanted in connection to a murder, making Bess’ situation even worse.

Bess and Simon eventually team up and drive all over the English countryside looking for clues to her missing patient. A few clues lead them to a small village. There are some strange happenings and a couple strange men that have recently shown up and the community is tight lipped about them, muddying the waters for our duo.

In this book Bess really plunges into the role of detective and almost gets herself into some serious trouble. Bess and Simon are very persistent in their search and they slowly find more and more clues, some of which solve mysteries they weren’t even  looking for. One man was already murdered–can they find out what’s going on and stop a second murder? It’s a race against the clock!

Rating: ★★★★☆ 

Caleb is a software engineer and amateur woodworker living in southern Minnesota. He has more hobbies than he has time or money for, and enjoys his quiet time reading.

Review copy was provided free of any obligation by William Morrow. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.