Saturday, May 19, 2018, we had a delightful visit and presentation by Christine Trent. Christine is already well-known to most mystery fans for her "Lady of Ashes" mystery series about Violet Harper, a female undertaker in Victorian London.
However, on Saturday, Christine portrayed the character of "the" Florence Nightingale. The hour and a half presentation flew by despite being jam-packed with all kinds of revelations about Florence Nightingale. Ms. Nightingale is the heroine in "No Cure for the Dead"—the first book in a new mystery series and it fills the bill nicely.
Florence was bright, vivacious, strong-willed and determined. She quickly learned the ins and outs of England's Parliamentary Politics and how to deal with elite snobs and obstructive military men. She had to fight half of the British Army hierarchy to get even the most minimal cooperation and basics of medical supplies for British boys in the Crimea. Despite no real help and a very limited number of nurses, she eventually succeeded.
As a result of her keen intellect, nursing as a profession took a huge leap forward as she applied rational scientific analysis to medicine on the spot.
She was also instrumental in introducing modern administrative procedures that are still in use today.
As they say, timing can be everything in life and Florence never married because her true love did not propose that one more time that she was expecting. But, she did find the corpse of a dead Russian general in an empty room in a British military hospital. Utilizing her natural born intelligence, keen eye for observing even the most minute details, and understanding how the human mind and body really interact, she was ideally suited to investigate and solve even the most difficult of crimes to unravel.