The Burning Glass
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First print-published by Five Star/Gale in 2007.
Fire in the Borders
The rolling hills of the Scottish Borders have seen centuries of fire—Scots, English, battling kings, feuding lords, rampaging clansmen, raiding, looting, killing. But the fire at brooding Ferniebank Castle wasn’t set by an enemy. Isabel Sinclair died there four hundred years ago, on her way to a lover’s tryst, in the conflagration kindled by her own burning-glass.
Or so the story goes.
Now Jean Fairbairn is on her way to write Ferniebank’s story—and to her own tryst with ex-cop Alasdair Cameron, who is now a caretaker of historic properties. He has at last lowered his personal drawbridge for Jean, and they plan to set decaying Ferniebank alight.
But they’re not alone. Ciara Macquarrie, a New Age mythobabbler from Alasdair’s past, plans to transform the castle and its chapel into a bright new conference center and spa. Especially since the chapel was built by the same long-dead hands as cryptic Rosslyn—now a hot tourist attraction, thanks to a popular story titled The Da Vinci Code.
In Scotland, plans go up in smoke. Stories shift and change like reflections in antique glass. Buried secrets rise to haunt the living. The Ferniebank clarsach, Isabel’s harp, disappears—even while its music lingers on. Vandals lurk in the night. Death visits both the castle dungeon and chapel’s ancient well.
To his frustration, Alasdair now has to work in the shadow of the official force. But when the darkness clears, it’s Jean who finds herself facing a murderer.
The Burning Glass is a story of mystery and suspense tightly woven with Jean and Alasdair’s personal story. It takes place in Scotland, on the ever-shifting shore between history and myth, a place where (mis)perception kindles many a fire.
- Lillian Stewart Carl, December 2010
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