13 Steps to the Cellar


After Callie Harris attends her father’s funeral—he now rests beside her mother, her father’s sister Laverne and her grandparents in the family plot—she decides to visit Richmond, Maine and learn more about her aunty, Dr. Laverne Doss, murdered by her husband. At the stately old house where Laverne lived, she meets Matt Martin, and there is an immediate mutual attraction. Richmond is instantly buzzing with the news of her arrival, stirring up memories long buried, not all of them pleasant. She begins her research and slowly becomes snared in Richmond’s murky past. A murder while she is there, a suicide, a corrupt politician, and the mystery behind Laverne’s death slowly unravel as her affection for Matt grows. She thinks she has uncovered everything, but the mystery still lingers.

With “13 Steps to the Cellar”, Teresa Mathews takes readers deep into Callie’s soul and the dark souls of Richmond’s elite with a murder thriller hard to put down. Superbly written with engaging dialogue, this book is a must read for aficionados of whodunit crime. Callie does not set out to rattle old skeletons, but her very presence begins closed-room whispers and malicious speculation that turns Richmond into a seething cauldron of unrest. The author employs numerous historical flashbacks and character shifts, which some readers may find off-putting, as they take focus away from Callie. For others, however, this adds teasing detail to the story. Teresa Mathews weaves “13 Steps to the Cellar” with delicate skill, which will leave readers eminently satisfied.

Paul Brennan