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The Crossing Places | [Elly Griffiths]

The Crossing Places

When she's not digging up bones or other ancient objects, Ruth Galloway lectures at the University of North Norfolk. She lives happily alone in a remote place called Saltmarsh overlooking the North Sea and, for company; she has her cats Flint and Sparky, and Radio 4. When a child's bones are found in the marshes near an ancient site that Ruth worked on ten years earlier, Ruth is asked to date them.
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Publisher's Summary

When she's not digging up bones or other ancient objects, Ruth Galloway lectures at the University of North Norfolk. She lives happily alone in a remote place called Saltmarsh overlooking the North Sea and, for company; she has her cats Flint and Sparky, and Radio 4. When a child's bones are found in the marshes near an ancient site that Ruth worked on ten years earlier, Ruth is asked to date them.

The bones turn out to be two thousand years old, and DCI Harry Nelson, who called on Ruth for help, is disappointed. He'd hoped they would be the bones of a child called Lucy who's been missing for ten years; he's been getting letters about her ever since. Then a second girl goes missing and Nelson receives more letters.

Soon it becomes clear that Ruth is in grave danger from a killer who knows that her expert knowledge is being used to help the police with their enquiries.

©2009 Elly Griffiths; (P)2009 BBC Audiobooks Ltd

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.9 (275 )
5 star
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3.9 (210 )
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4.1 (213 )
5 star
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4 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Sharon in Surrey Vancouver, Canada 10-05-14
    Sharon in Surrey Vancouver, Canada 10-05-14 Member Since 2002

    Old Broad with Keyboard

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Surprisingly good Thriller"
    If you could sum up The Crossing Places in three words, what would they be?

    A spooky adventure.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Crossing Places?

    The moment that Ruth realized WHO the real bad guy was. The ending was a bit of a surprise too.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Yes. In fact, I almost did but had to finally give it up & go to bed at 4 in the morning!!!


    Any additional comments?

    I liked it. I liked it so much I bookmarked the entire series. It was surprisingly good. Lots of action. Lots of suspense. Nothing unrealistic & everything was quite shockingly believable.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    twoseagreeneyes 07-19-14 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A great mystery mixed with unique setting"
    Where does The Crossing Places rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    I will be looking for Book 2 !


    What does Jane McDowell bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Also a first for me was listening the narration of Jane McDowell who does an excellent using her voice to add to the distinctive flavor of the area and its inhabitants. Her slower, smooth pace and smooth transition of characters makes this a great listen. Although there are different dialects in some of the characters she makes them all sound quite natural.


    Any additional comments?

    Within the misty saltmarsh along the North Sea, a pile bones is unearthed. DI Nelson suspects they may be those of a young girl gone missing ten years ago. Nelson has never closed the case and has received cryptic disturbing letters over the years since her disappearance, taunting him about her whereabouts. He enlists Professor Ruth Galloway, a forensic anthropologist to determine the sex and age of the bones, hoping to finally bring some closure to the little girl’s family.

    Then, another little girl goes missing and fearing that the same killer is at work, he and Ruth team up to try to make sense of the grisly letters hoping it will lead them to the girl, before she is gone forever.
    Living alone with only her cats as companions, Ruth becomes a focal point for the killer who fears her expert knowledge might lead DI Nelson to discovering just who he/she is.

    The Crossing Places is the first in a series by Elly Griffiths, and was my first read by this author. I was delighted to find a new series that I will surely read more of. I found the third person style of storytelling refreshing and I was fascinated by tidbits of forensic anthropology thrown into the plot. Ruth’s lack of self-esteem regarding her appearance is one that many of us can identify with and therefore makes her character seem all the more real. The descriptions of the saltmarsh area are vivid and captivating making it easy to picture this unique environment that is the setting for the book.

    Also a first for me was listening the narration of Jane McDowell who does an excellent using her voice to add to the distinctive flavor of the area and its inhabitants. Her slower, smooth pace and smooth transition of characters makes this a great listen. Although there are different dialects in some of the characters she makes them all sound quite natural.

    Overall I would rate this book as 4 stars, which for me means that this was a very good book. I enjoyed it, perhaps even had a hard time "putting it down". I would recommend this book to others.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    R. Hill Brooklyn, NY USA 05-24-14
    R. Hill Brooklyn, NY USA 05-24-14 Member Since 2002

    Say something about yourself!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "interesting characters and setting"

    The setting and characters are compelling. It was easy to solve the whodunnit long before the story was over, but the characters and some plot twists kept it interesting.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    RSR West Hartford, CT 10-17-13
    RSR West Hartford, CT 10-17-13 Member Since 2011

    RSR

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    "Suspense, Archaeology, and strong real Woman"
    What made the experience of listening to The Crossing Places the most enjoyable?

    The gentle nature of the reader, and the nuances between characters all made this a great listening experience. The story flows smoothly, though there are a couple of moments when it transitions from one focus to another when a longer pause might have helped me make the transition better.


    Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

    Didn't want to put it down. Things moved quickly, but I found myself wondering until the very end just which character was the "bad guy." Depth of character, despite what seemed like caricatures, kept the suspense high.


    Have you listened to any of Jane McDowell’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    This was my first by this performer, but I'd choose her again!


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    Brought me to tears at a couple of points - both from relief and from sadness.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Darja Germany 09-24-13
    Darja Germany 09-24-13 Member Since 2012
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    "yet another forensic anthropologist story"

    You will enjoy the book if you like reading about the north of England landscapes and if you're looking for something similar to Simon Beckett or early Katy Reichs. The story is not nearly as suspensful as Beckett's, but you will find all the usual gory medical details, and a bit of campus romantic thrown in. All in all a decent read, although I wouldn't list it as a 'best of' anything.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Librarian OK, USA 06-13-13
    Librarian OK, USA 06-13-13

    Retired "Okie" librarian & happy to have found Audible for good stories & staying in touch with new authors & books.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "An archeologist heroine & a tough northern copper"

    I enjoyed this book! I liked the story, atmospheric Northern Saltmarsh location, the believable characters, and the human frailties. It is modern with some modern moral dilemmas. I don't necessarily agree with all of Ruth Galloway's life decisions just like I don't agree with all of my friends. But they are still my friends. Griffiths books are still my "friends". The references to Iron Age bones, Druid practices, and mysticism are fascinating. The suspense keeps building even though one can see some of the bad stuff coming. I am definitely hooked on this series & will be listening to more of Griffiths books and in order.

    Jane McDowell is now the voice of Ruth Galloway in my mind & is excellent.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ronna 09-17-12
    Ronna 09-17-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Intriguing archeological and present day mystery"

    First in a series of books featuring Ruth Galloway, a feisty forensic archeologist/teacher who lives on the edge of the marshlands near Norfolk, England.  In ancient mythology, this marshland was sacred because it was a mixture of land and sea. At one time, it was a land mass connecting present day England and Scandinavia. Ancient people's considered it to be sacred, a connection between earth and the afterlife.

    The book begins when  a young child goes missing and DCI Harry Nelson fears a connection to a similar missing child from ten years ago. Then the police find child's bones in the marshlands and  Nelson calls on Galloway to determine the age of these bones. Though these turn out to be ancient bones, Nelson and Galloway pair up to try and fine the two present day children because of letters Nelson has been receiving referring to ancient legends and tantalizing references to the first lost child.

    Ancient mythology and present day terrors form an intriguing mystery that drives these two characters further and further into dangerous situations.  A deft combination of forensic archeology and present day murder mystery makes this a most compelling read for historical and mystery fans alike.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    MARINA 08-28-12
    MARINA 08-28-12
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    "excellent"
    If you could sum up The Crossing Places in three words, what would they be?

    I enjoyed the characters, the story was interesting, it was well written and I'd love to see about 20 more in the series!


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gail 06-01-11
    Gail 06-01-11 Member Since 2009
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    "Boring, Boring, BORING!!!!"

    Absolutely nothing here to keep you from falling asleep! This was one of the most boring books I've listened to.... kept hoping SOMETHING would happen and it just never did. By about half way through, I could care less who did it and who did what to who. Without giving away too much of the 'story line' (if you even want to call it that), it seemed the author couldn't quite decide who to make the bad-guy..... so she spread it all around. Unlikable characters certainly didn't help things. To top it off, the narrator was awful - if she wants to give characters accents, she really needs to work on her abilities. I feel that I totally wasted a credit on this one.

    5 of 11 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Brenda United States 01-01-14
    Brenda United States 01-01-14 Member Since 2009

    I read all series books, when I find a character I love I can't stand not to know what happens to them next.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Different kind of read for me..."
    Any additional comments?

    I read a lot of serial killer books so this one is a little off my usual. The narrator is british sounding and the story is a bit slow getting into it but it was pretty good once I figured out the characters.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 11-20 of 20 results PREVIOUS12NEXT
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  • AmyAlice
    Durham, United Kingdom
    4/8/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "First Ruth Galloway Mystery"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    A gripping, occasionally chilling, mystery following an archeologist and a police officer as they pursue separate investigations into deaths on the North Norfolk coast.


    What other book might you compare The Crossing Places to, and why?

    Kate Ellis' series with Wesley Petersen as the cop also has an archeology thread running through it. The Galloway book was a little more hard hitting than the Ellis ones.


    Which character – as performed by Jane McDowell – was your favourite?

    Ruth herself is not an expected heroine as her private life is a mess and she isnt sure what she wants out of life. She reminded me a bit of Vera in Ann Cleeves' novels - a bit feisty and anti-social.


    Any additional comments?

    Great mystery, interesting characters that have room to move and change, good setting. The ending required just a little 'suspension of disbelief'.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Roderic
    Victoria Park, Australia
    4/4/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Good to read a book set in Norfolk"
    What did you like most about The Crossing Places?

    The main characters did interest me and knowing that it is the first in a series of books I look forward to the characters developing.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Ellie
    DUNOON, United Kingdom
    2/16/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Could have been better."
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    I bought this on other listeners reviews.At first it sounded like it was going to be a good story,with an easy to listen to narrator.The story itself was pretty good,except for the constant references to "the single ,over weight woman,with no kids.".I am still only three quarters of way through,but am determined to finish it! Not sure if I will be brave enough to follow on and buy further books from this author,as it felt more like a very bad women's fiction book ,rather than a murder mystery.


    What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

    It did make you wonder who did it...only reason I finished it.


    Would you listen to another book narrated by Jane McDowell?

    Yes,very pleasant voice,easy to listen to.


    Do you think The Crossing Places needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

    Maybe-if the author did not go on with the sad only woman bit of the story so much.


    Any additional comments?

    Felt more like a book my Nana would have read,more than a mystery.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Rosemary
    Norwich, United Kingdom
    6/30/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Excellent Story !"
    Where does The Crossing Places rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    It's well up towards the top and far superior to Patricia Cornwell.I was born,as were all of my forbears,in Norfolk,and I still live here.Some of our coast is like this,but a lot is far more pleasurable to visit.


    Which scene did you most enjoy?

    I enjoyed all of it very much.


    Any additional comments?

    I don't know why other reviewers say she had a baby ! That does'nt happen in this book !!!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Villagegirl
    4/21/12
    Overall
    "Excellent new series"

    Really enjoyed this - listening to the first few minutes I thought it might be a little cliched, but Ruth is an unusual female character in detective fiction, and funny with it. Particularly liked the descriptions of the landscape and weather. Very well-read too, though the Norfolk accent's all wrong - sounds like Somerset!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Ave
    Stockholm, Sweden
    2/13/12
    Overall
    "Seriously?"

    At first it looked as if this book was another 'let's give a single woman a man, because single women are unhappy and lonely', but no, it's worse! This book is 'let's give a single woman a child, because all men are cheaters'. I am offended on behalf of men who are faithful to their wives/partners/girlfriends and single women who are having fulfilled and happy lives.

    Is it truly so hard to write about a heroine who is having some body issues, relationship issues, and family issues without giving her a man and/or a baby and voilà! everything is fine? Surely these issues can be worked through several books without "fixing" the heroine with a baby.

    3 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 11-16 of 16 results PREVIOUS12NEXT

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