Grave robbing and witches provide the atmospheric overture as Maj. Abel Jones, agent for Abraham Lincoln, investigates the murder of a Northern general in his fifth suspenseful adventure. In the preceding novel, Honor's Kingdom, the diminutive Welshman was in England working for the Union's interests, but here he returns home to "dear Pottsville" in Pennsylvania. Jones must journey deeper into coal country when Gen. Carl Stone, who had been recruiting Irish miners for the Union army, is found slain. The confessed killer has died of cholera, but a cautionary check of his grave finds interred instead the body of a young woman who has been stabbed to death. The intrigue thus triggered brings Jones up against a mad priest, local witch women and the tight-knit society of the Irish mining community (among its members is Black Jack Kehoe, later notorious in the Molly Maguires). Complicating the investigation are clues pointing to Russia and schemes for world revolution from the prewar years when the general went by the name of Carl von Steinbrock. Inevitably the investigation returns to the Irish immigrants, "Those famine lads cut loose to find their keep, in a world that did not want them or their kind."
A Civil War general has been murdered and a man is dispatched from President Lincoln to investigate. Major Jones must find out if the man accused of killing the general really died from cholera, or is still alive, since a young girl's body has been found in the killer's grave. This mystery is set in the time of the beginning of the big immigrations from Ireland, expansion of the railroads, and big mines employing most of the townspeople against the backdrop of the Civil War. It is full of wonderfully drawn characters with good traits and flaws.
Couldn't get past the first chapter because the writing was forced, didn't ring true.
A Union general is murdered while recuiting Irish immigrants and his confessed killer "dies" before he can be questioned. In defiance of the local priest a stubbon investigator opens his grave only to find the body of a young woman many weeks dead. This is a GOOD book.
Major Abel Jones investigates an Irish secret society in Civil War-era upstate New York.
Fifth book in this series.