How Like An Angel by Margaret Millar: A Review By Warren Bull
By the time How Like An Angel was published (1962) the author had already won an Edgar for her novel Beast in View. She was named Grand Master by Mystery Writers of America. Ed Gorman described he work as ..”too good for the mass market.”
Broke, unemployed and alone, Joe Quinn is dropped off in the desert with a path to follow that leads toward a religious commune called the Tower. Addicted to gambling despite his inevitable losses, Quinn is not the sort of guy to get tangled up in other people’s problems. However, when Sister Blessing offers one hundred and twenty dollars in cash for Quinn to find out if a man named Patrick O’Gorman still lives in a town nearby, he accepts the offer with no idea what making inquiries will set off.
How Like An Angel is compelling, suspenseful novel that surprises as it depicts human motivation, obsession, love and hate. Belief versus doubt plays out in the town as well as in the commune.
This is a well-written study of the human condition in addition to being a truly satisfying mystery. I am glad to be able to recommend it highly.