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By: Rosemary Ayles

Secrets in the Attic

Pages: 290 Ratings:
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Dame Henrietta Copeland in her new role as private investigator finds herself outsmarted by thieves at the local garage sale, when she attends incognito, is wrapped up in a curtain and delivered to a cliff edge, left to perish.

And while it seems like a wild goose chase, she is stalked by an associate of a suspected murdered/suicide victim, who seems to be getting hot under the collar with Henrietta’s enquiries.

She is constantly reprimanded by the magistrate for overstepping the boundaries of the law, while solving cases.

Her devoted family are appalled to find she is befriending an ex-prisoner, the very person who forced her to sell her beloved paddle wheeler after being disgraced for wildlife poaching on the Mighty River Murray.

Undeterred by adversity Henrietta travels to Perth in Western Australia, to assist her prisoned nephew and unwittingly discovers a diamond heist and to Mount Gambier in the Southeast of South Australia seeking a stolen herbal rose formula and inadvertently while sipping tea on her way back to Goolwa, through the Coorong, uncovers a love nest, the cause of an infidelity which she had refused to uncover at the beginning of her new career. There is personal tragedy when news breaks out of the sinking of the paddle wheeler Beatrice Lonsdale, formerly Laurel Wreath which had been moored at Pier 15 on the Goolwa wharf.

There are surprises and disappointments as Henrietta strives to make a living keeping secrets in the attic.


Rosemary Ayles lives on a five-acre property on the Fleurieu Peninsula of South Australia with her husband, Don, where Eucalypt Gum Trees grow on the fringe. When her two sons arrive with her three grandsons, they race out to the trees, competing to climb the highest branch. Rosemary spends a great deal of time walking the beaches on both sides of the Peninsula, Normanville to Carrickalinga where the ocean is emerald, sand pink and rainbows orange; Middleton to Victor Harbor where dolphins and whales often frolic in the bay. After those walks, she returns to her desk and writes whatever has inspired her.

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