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"Ramsay skillfully weaves historical fact into his story, all the while blending brisk action with excellent characterization." —Publishers Weekly
Elderly Jonathan Lydell III is proud of his lineage. He is related to the Virginia Lees and to the Custis family. For Lydell, family, status, and history are the only realities—that and his antebellum house.
Lydell's house has a very colorful history, and Lydell is committed to restoring it to its pre-Civil War configuration, complete with a "stranger room." In the 1800s, many family homes sported these attached rooms with separate entrances and locks that were kept ready for unknown travelers. The intent was to protect the family from unsavory guests.
Nearly 150 years ago, an inexplicable murder took place inside the Lydell's locked stranger room. The murderer was never caught. Lydell thinks this brutal history adds to the house's rich character. But when an identical murder is committed in the newly restored stranger room, even Sheriff Ike Schwartz and FBI agent Karl Hedrick can't explain it....