Author: Elly Griffiths
Date: July 2013
When archaeologist Dan Golding finds a significant burial site he writes to his old university friend Ruth Galloway to ask for her expert assistance in examining the bones. But before Ruth receives the letter, Dan is dead.
I’d not read one of Griffiths books before but this is one of the few times I would recommend that a series be read in chronological order, simply because some of the characters relationships and dynamics can be confusing otherwise.
The descriptions of Lancashire are lovely, emphasising the differences between the glitz and tackiness of Blackpool, as opposed to the wild and desolate feel of the countryside and woods.
However, I found that there were a few problems with the book. Firstly, I got a little bored with the notion of Northerners being portrayed as somehow culturally backwards, compared to their Southern counterparts.
Secondly, I became slightly irritated by the main characters obsession with her own body image. The constant negative comparisons between herself and every other female character quickly became rather waring.
Otherwise, the plot is interesting (if a little far-fetched), the characterisation is good and the last handful of chapters are full of enough tension that I wasn’t disappointed by the ending.