I had great expectations to this one as The Crossing Places was a wonderful read. And just as in her crime debut, Griffiths dishes up a wonderful Norfolk environment and the most compelling characters. Ruth Galloway is not your typical smart or slim detective but a competent and intelligent forensic archaeologist (a role model for female readers who are not exactly Hollywood material?) DCI Harry Nelson may seem taciturn and gruff, yet he is a sensible and likeable family father in his own way. These characters are not heroes or stars, but very real people you enjoy getting to know.
The story begins when Ruth visits a local archaeological site, and she is excited when Dr Max Grey, expert on Roman Britain and leader of the dig, shows her they have found some bones. Soon the body of a child is found beneath the walls of a nearby Victorian mansion, a former children´s home, which is being torn down to give way to modern flats. The plot has probably been a sacred place in the past so are the human remains old or new? Besides, the head is missing which makes Dr Grey suspect that the child may have been sacrificed.
As readers of the debut will know, Ruth is pregnant but determined to keep her baby even if she expects she will have to raise it alone. She thrives in her isolated house in the Saltmarsh though her pregnancy makes her more vulnerable than usual, a fact that the murderer exploits ruthlessly.
No need to spoil your fun by telling you more about the fine plot. I want more of this series – the sooner the better!
This ARC was kindly sent to me by Maxine of Petrona.