“Death of a Dyer” by Eleanor Kuhns
Set in 1796, Kuhns has done her research as this book is in keeping with the times.
Will Rees, a weaver by choice, a farmer by trade, and a widower who sets about solving crimes, centers his days on the murder of his childhood friend, Nate Bowditch. Rees hadn’t spoken with Nate for many years, since they were children themselves, but he still is affected deeply by Nate’s death. So when his assistance is requested to find out what happened to Nate, he’s unable to say no.
While trying to keep peace at his home with his son David and his housekeeper (or is she?) Lydia, Rees hunts down clues and questions those who he suspects to be involved in Nate’s murder. He begins at Nate’s farm and discovers that everything is not what it seems. Nate’s wife Molly is cold, the help is secretive, and Nate’s son Richard is missing. Richard ran after being accused of killing his father. It’s now Rees’s job to either prove Richard innocent or show his guilt.
Secrets kept for years are brought to light and people close to Nate and Rees are stunned by what is revealed. This is a very well-written and entertaining historical novel.