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
I've never been a fan of mysteries, but I loves the author's use of details to provide me with a great picture of the characters and places. LOVED IT. Am now reading the Janus Stone and enjoying it just as much.
Blogger of accidental discoveries through books
I really enjoyed the plot and found the characters believable. The backdrop of the Norfolk salt marshes created a wonderful damp wind blown atmosphere and in my mind's eye I could see it's beauty and feel it. The narration by Jane McDowell was just right for me. An excellent mystery.
Yes. Narrator Jane McDowell was pitch perfect in capturing Ruth's voice.
Story a bit slow paced at first, but was an interesting view into the life of independent archaeology prof, Ruth Galloway. Is she contented or lonely? I still can't decide. Different worlds to explore here: archaeology and the desolate salt marshs Ruth calls home.
books and music
This is the first time I have listened to this author and this reader. It was an engrossing story, a wonderful sense of place, and great characters. And with one exception, the narrator was as good as the story. That exception was the dreadful Scandinavian accent that was totally unnecessary for the character: the descriptions of him were more than sufficient for you to see him as the Viking hippy character he was. But even with that jarring note, I loved this book.
Hi, I am a voracious reader with a wide range of tastes.
The excellent writing and character development. Ruth the main character, she is a strong women and yet flawed, as all people are, making her very realistic.
Well I did guess who the bad guy was half way through, but was kept enthralled by the plot all the same.
I am going to buy the second book now.
Not a writer, a writer wannabe, editor, lit maj, or pretend literary critic. Just an avid reader/listener. My ratings are opinion only.
The story was good, the narration fair, overall I enjoyed the listen.
Not action packed or full of witty dialog, just a decent story line with relatable characters and good imagary.
Retired "Okie" librarian & happy to have found Audible for good stories & staying in touch with new authors & books.
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.
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.
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.
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.
This was my first by this performer, but I'd choose her again!
Brought me to tears at a couple of points - both from relief and from sadness.
"enjoyable crime hokum."
I personally enjoy history/religious/pagan based books I am a great fan of Phil Rickman's Merrily books. Being a science teacher I enjoyed the forensic bits. The forensic archeologist Ruth is a well rounded character who you quickly get to like. The story moves quickly along and although you guess whodonit about half way along it is enjoyable to see how it pans out and who becomes a suspect and the various twists and turns.
"Crime and archaeology - what's not to like?!"
This is the first of Elly Griffiths' Ruth Galloway novels I've read, and I'm very, very impressed! As a fan of Phil Rickman, and other pagan/paranormal storytellers, I loved the unusual location of the events - which is beautifully evoked. The plot is complex, but makes sense, and Ruth is a fully rounded, 'real' character - as is DCI Nelson. Although you might guess what happened, and who did it about half way through (the sudden arrival of chapters told from a different point of view is a sort of clue!), it's well worth sticking with the journey. There are already two more Ruth books (The Janus Stone - available from Audible - and The House at Sea's End - hopefully soon available!), and I look forward to reading/listening to both of them - and the others which I'm sure will come in the future!
The reading is well done - some good use of regional accents to deliniate the characters, and perfectly paced- recommended!
"Gripped by the story"
This is the first time I have come across this author and her forensic archeologist. It was a gripping story of people and the special landscape of the salt marsh near Kings Lynn. Brilliantly read too by Jane McDowell. I shall definitely look for more stories in this series.
"I Dig This Book"
This was a real punt: an author I had not heard of, and a review which put me off a little. It was certainly a worthwhile gamble in the end. Griffiths paints a vivid picture of the Norfolk coast and populates it with likeable andinteresting characters.
I am looking forward to the next to books, both already on my wishlist. If you like your crime thrillers with well-written and well-researched settings then give this a whirl.
I found the main character very easy to identify with, and was immersed in the story right from the beginning. All the other characters were colourful and interesting as well, and the unraveling of the mystery was paced so that I didn't have a chance to get bored along the way. The skillful narration brought all the places, characters and events very vividly before my mind's eye, and I thoroughly enjoyed the whole experience.
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.
"Excellent Story !"
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.
I enjoyed all of it very much.
I don't know why other reviewers say she had a baby ! That does'nt happen in this book !!!
"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!
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