First Line: The idea came to me one warm July day as I was watching a doctor fill one in.
When you're a Plain Jane, you get used to being one of two things: being denigrated or being completely overlooked. Jane Ziegler has been a district nurse her entire working life, and she's reached the end of her tether. That's when she starts wondering if anyone would notice a missing blank certificate from a very important book. Once she finds out, she then discovers that a learning curve means some changes to her plans.
Several years ago, I read Priscilla Master's River Deep, her first Martha Gunn mystery featuring a coroner in Shrewsbury, England. I really enjoyed it and have always meant to read more in the series. Finding "The Certificate" definitely reminded me of my good intentions.
Jane Ziegler is the type of character who makes you feel mixed emotions. Mixed because while so many of us can empathize with her and her life experiences, we still feel that she's creepy and we don't want to turn our backs on her. Hopefully, readers will also pause to reflect on how they treat others-- especially those they take for granted. The fast pace of this story made the ending arrive much faster than I wanted it to, and-- an added bonus-- it didn't end quite the way I thought it would. The Author's Note at the end made me laugh.
Yes, indeed. After reading "The Certificate," I really need to read Priscilla Masters' next Martha Gunn mystery, Slip Knot!
The Certificate by Priscilla Masters
Lume Books © 2018
eBook, 100 pages
Short Story, Standalone
Source: Purchased from Amazon.