Monday, February 21, 2011

The Janus Stone by Elly Griffiths Book Review

Thanks to NetGALLEY and Hougton Mifflin Harcourt Publishers, I recently received an e-copy of The Janus Stone by Elly Griffiths to review.  This is one of the Ruth Galloway mysteries, the 2nd in the series and their were numerous references to the previous case, a bit of which bordered on too much for my taste.

However, the characters in the story are compelling.  Ruth Galloway is a forensic archaelogist (recently pregnant with a married man's baby),  and the headless corpse of a child turns up buried under the walls of an old children's home that is being turned into luxury apartments.  Identification of the victim is tricky since it appears not one, not two, but three little girls have died or gone missing from the site.

Ruth works alongside Detective Chief Inspector Harry Nelson (the father of her unborn baby) to solve the case.  Many are interviewed, including Father Patrick Hennesy who ran the orphanage and members of his staff as well as members of the Spens family, the current & original owners of the property.

Meanwhile, threats to Ruth in the signs of the lesser known Roman Gods appear and it soon seems her very life and the life of her baby may be in danger.

This book was compelling enough that I'd read another in the series though at times all the allusions to Roman and Druid mythology got to be a bit much and the solution turned out quite impossible in the end (though I didn't see it coming).  Ruth & Nelson are likeable characters, as is Ruth's eccentric Druid friend Cathbad, and there are some funny lines of cutting humor at various places throughout the story.  If I had to give it a star rating, I'd probably give 3.5 to 4 stars for the book.

This book is sold on Amazon for $16.67 hardback, $14.30, Kindle edition: Link to Amazon


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