Monday, April 17, 2023

For the Love of Grace by Nancy Fraser

For the Love of Grace
Ghosts of New England: Last Light Point: Book 3
by Nancy Fraser



Book Blurb: 


Fall, 1941 


Grace O’Hearn and her father have lived in Last Light Point since before the ’29 stock market crash that took so much from so many. Still, somehow, they managed to keep afloat, often lending a hand to those in dire need. 


Now—many years later—things are finally picking up again. So much so, the tavern is a much-coveted piece of property. When Grace’s father is brutally murdered, the main suspect is a property developer who’s been harassing all the waterfront proprietors. With her father’s death, Grace now becomes the sole owner of The Crowe's Nest Tavern, an establishment that dates back centuries, and comes with its own set of resident ghosts. 


When FBI agent, Max Stewart, is assigned to investigate suspected racketeering and police corruption in Last Light Point, the last thing he expects is to be caught up in a murder investigation. When he first meets Grace, he’s convinced she’s hiding something. Yet, her keen insight about the town, and everyone in it, may be the best lead he has. 


Can they work together to solve both investigations? Or, will an attraction neither of them can deny keep getting in the way? 




Grace put four place settings on each of the six tables in the main dining area. Not that she was expecting a crowd, but it never hurt to be prepared. She and Aggie, her cook, would eat in the kitchen in between customers. 


It had rained lightly during the afternoon and the early evening remained overcast. The foul weather would, most likely, curtail tourists. With any luck, a few of the locals would wander in. Especially, given it was Thursday, and that meant Aggie’s famous pork stew and dumplings. 


Grace was on her way back to the service area to grab water glasses when her newest guest appeared in the doorway. 


“Mr. Stew... um... Max. I hope you found your room satisfactory.” 


“Yes, thank you. The view out over the water is striking when the sun begins to set.” 


“The sunrise is just as beautiful,” she told him. “Can I offer you a drink before dinner?  

We have special pricing in the dining room.” 


“I wouldn’t say ‘no’ to a scotch on the rocks,” he responded. 


“One scotch coming up. Take a seat anywhere. As you can see, we’re not crowded.” 


“I take it business has been slow since... well...” 


“Business was ‘slow’ before my father was killed. Now, it’s almost non-existent.” 


“I’m sure the hubbub will die down, and your customers will return.” 


“We have one busy tourist season left these next couple of weeks,” she explained. “With the change of season, we’ll get those who find it interesting to watch the leaves turn color. For whatever reason, they come in droves.” 


“They do the same in other countries,” Max said. “In Japan, it’s called momijigari, or red leaf hunting. In Finland, it’s ruskaretki.” 


“You’ve traveled a lot,” she surmised. 


“I did a four-year stint with the military police before joining the bureau in 1935. During my time overseas, we covered a lot of countries shepherding diplomats and politicians.” 


“I’ve never been anywhere but here.” 


“You grew up in Last Light Point?” he asked. 


“Technically, I grew up north of here in Mystic Point, just off Skullery Bay. We moved here when my uncle retired and sold the tavern to my father for next to nothing.” 


“Why so cheap?” 


“It was 1928. Prohibition was still in effect, and there wasn’t much ‘business’ to the business. Had it not been for the boarders, and the dining, we’d have not even tried to make a go of it.” 


“It must have been rough.” 


“Not at first. When my mother passed away a few years earlier, she left my father some family money. Pops was always good with finances, but he didn’t trust banks. When the stock market crashed, a lot of our friends back home went belly up. A few took their own lives. It was horrible. We were able to hold on because of his frugal ways. We never once tossed out a boarder, even if they couldn’t pay.” 



About the Anthology – 4 Complete Books, 4 Best Selling Authors