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April EKSAge: 35-44Gender: female5 Stars Out Of 5Charming Cozy Mystery with a Lovely SettingNovember 3, 2012April EKSAge: 35-44Gender: femaleQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5The Hunted Hare is the first book in a new series by Fay Sampson featuring photographer Aidan Davison. In this first book, Aidan visits Pennant Melangell in North Wales with his wife, Jenny, and their 7 year old daughter, Melangell. They named their daughter Melangell because they fell in love with the little mountain village when they'd visited it years before to research a book. They're returning to Pennant Melangell to share it with their daughter, while they still can. Jenny has advanced cancer, with no further possible treatment. Though this ancient Welsh village is a pilgrimage site for those seeking healing, the Davisons have come for more personal reasons.
Pennant Melangell has changed since their last visit. Most notably, a new hotel has been constructed which has brought tension to the area. Some of the area residents are very upset by its construction and don't trust the owner's plans for the hotel. The Davisons walk right into this drama when they arrive for their stay at the House of the Hare. It doesn't take long for the drama to evolve into a full-fledged mystery, as murder scars the beautiful and serene atmosphere of Pennant Melangell. Aidan and Jenny find themselves unwillingly caught in the very middle of this murder investigation.
I loved this cozy mystery, as well as its Celtic location. I was immediately drawn into the beautiful setting, as well as the poignant family relationships of the Davisons as they face Jenny's coming death. They cling to each other and their faith in God throughout the story, despite the many fears and doubts they each struggle with. The story had a couple plot twists I didn't expect, as well as a few connections that didn't exactly take me by surprise. However, the resolution of the mystery was very satisfying, and I didn't want to say goodbye to the Davison family at the end of the book.
I'm looking forward to reading more Aidan Mysteries by Fay Sampson, who successfully shares her love of Celtic history with her readers in The Hunted Hare. The book included the opening chapter of the next Aidan Mystery, and I am already intrigued. I hope I don't have to wait long for the second book.
(Kregel Publications provided this book to me free, in exchange for an honest review. No further compensation was given.)