In the winter of 1940, the Home Guard unearth a skeleton on the moor above the busy town of Hatterworth. 23 years earlier, the body of a young textile worker was found in the same spot and the prime suspect was never found, but the second body is now identified as his. Soon it becomes clear that the true murderer is still at large....
This is a very classic detective novel, set in a Yorkshire village; but I enjoyed it at least as much for the sense of place and time.
It is set in 1940, with the detective trying to solve a mystery which had happened in 1917, and I greatly enjoyed the descriptions of people, places and the details of daily life in both periods. The 1940's details were contemporary with the writing, while those for 1917 were presented as what people alive in 1940 remembered about life more than twenty years earlier. Often they were small details, such as having 'Water Man' written over a door so that if anyone had a burst pipe they would know who to go to in order to have the water switched off. The characters, too, were depicted as they would have appeared to someone at the start of WWII, with the various village people described and given personalities.
At first I thought the narrator a bit stiff and pompous, with his inclination to emphasise dramatically every adverb and adjective; but he reads very clearly and I grew to like his leisurely pace very much, as it enabled me to create a mental pictures from the detailed descriptions. He also did a quite superb job of giving the various characters their own voices, and presenting the rich Yorkshire accent.
This is one of the few audiobooks that I am listening to for a second time, and I have also just bought the second book by this author.
Audible, I am hugely enjoying these newly rediscovered mysteries, many of which have lain unattended for fifty years or more. Please keep them coming!
5 of 5 people found this review helpful
Good story mangled by a narrator whose inflections were all in the wrong place.. voice was like a rollercoaster... shame
1 of 1 people found this review helpful