Our parish has a rummage sale room. People donate all sort of items - dishes, decorations, statues, etc - and other people buy these items, making a free-will offering.
Among the items for sale are books. I was looking at the shelves when I spotted a mystery book, Requiem at the Refuge by Sister Carol Anne O’Marie.
I had never heard of Sister O'Marie, but noted on the cover that she had written a series of mysteries with an elderly religious sister as the detective. I later discovered the late Sister had written 11 such mysteries between 1984 and 2006. This particular one was from 2000.
I made a donation and took the book home.
As a mystery, the book was good - not great, but certainly enjoyable and well-written. The characters were interesting, and the story held my attention. And I liked the fact that faith plays a role in the story.
I couldn't help comparing it to another religious sister mystery I had recently read, Sine Qua Nun by Monica Quill (Ralph M. McInerny). McInerny has a tendency to insert his grumbles about the Church into his mystery books. Sister O'Marie's characters are clearly faithful, but the faith is part of who they are, and not an excuse to preach. I prefer that approach.
Would I read another book by Sister O'Marie? Yes, though I don't feel the need to go out immediately and seek more of her books. This particular one was a discard from our local library, and when I looked in the library's online catalog I saw there were no other books by her listed, though there are several listed in our regional library system catalog. I'm glad to know she's still popular enough that people are reading her.
Pax et bonum