Saturday, February 18, 2023

Search the Shadows - Keeper Shelf Review

Goodreads: Search the Shadows by Barbara Michaels

Rating:  Really Liked It (4 Stars)
Source:   Purchased

Description:  Who was her father? When twenty-two-year-old Haskell Malone accidentally discovers damning proof that the dead war hero whose name she bears is not her father, she is shattered. The revelation only confirms the dark fear that has haunted her since childhood. In fact, what little she knows about her birth and her mother's subsequent death, is a fragile web of evasions and lies.

Determined to expose the truth at any cost, Haskell takes a job at Chicago's famed Oriental Institute in the city where her mother once lived and loved. But as she searched the shadows of the past, she finds that the truth can sometimes be deadly.

Genre: Mystery

Why I Picked This Book:  I like to reread books off my Keeper Shelf to make sure they still deserve their place on the shelf.

My Impression:   I thoroughly enjoyed going on this journey with Haskell Malone who suddenly finds her world turned on its ear and the parents she idolized may not be who she thought they were.  The questions she has and the rabbit holes she goes down are understandable if not always the most logical and the reactions of those around her also feels authentic.

The mystery of the identity of Haskell's father was interesting as was Haskell getting to know her mother as a person through the people and places around her.  The atmosphere at the estate is suffocating and full of a faded gilded glamour.   

Barbara Mertz who writes as both Barbara Michaels and Elizabeth Peters has a PhD in Egyptology from the University of Chicago and published several books on Ancient Egypt so I enjoyed getting a peak into her thoughts on the subject through the fictional characters in the book.  It is also interesting to see how genetic mysteries like this were dealt with before we had DNA tests at our fingers.

What kept this book from being a total winner for me was the pacing was a bit slower than the lightening fast pace I expect from Barbara Michaels books and the romantic scene at the very end of the book had a bit of ick factor.  However, while it wasn't absolutely flawless this book has still re-earned its place on my Keeper shelf.

Would I Read More of this Series/Author? Of course!  Barbara Michaels is a favorite and I'm looking forward to reading more of her Elizabeth Peters books.

Would I Recommend this Book? Absolutely!  Her books are so much fun.


  1. I haven't read a Barbara Michaels book in quite a while. I love her writing.

  2. I've read this one several times, but not for quite a while. I keep thinking I'll go back and reread more of the Michaels/Peters books that are my favorites, but....those new books keep calling. Nice to hear what you thought about this one.

  3. I love this one! I've read most of her books that were written under Barbara Michaels, but only some of the ones written under her other penname.

  4. I've read and enjoyed all the Elizabeth Peters series.

    Anne - Books of My Heart

  5. I saw the cover and it immediately caught my attention. I don't know the author, but I'm definitely intrigued now!

    Thanks for sharing Katherine!

    Elza Reads

  6. I haven't read a book by this author. The description makes it sound like a book I'd enjoy.

  7. Good it re earned its place on the shelf. Made me chuckle over the ick factor at the end.

  8. I love it when a re-read of a favorite still rings true. 🤗