Monday, December 23, 2013

Review: A Dying Fall - Elly Griffiths

The publisher tells us this:
Ruth Galloway is shocked when she learns that her old university friend Dan Golding has died tragically in a house fire. But the death takes on a sinister cast when Ruth receives a letter from Dan written just before he died.

The letter tells of a great archaeological discovery, but Dan also says that he is scared for his life. Was Dan’s death linked to his find? The only clue is his mention of the Raven King, an ancient name for King Arthur.

I love this series but wonder if Griffiths is getting bogged down (pardon the pun if you're familiar with the series). Ruth and/or Harry need a big push to get something more going in these tales of old bones, single moms and skittish fringe friends.  While the mystery plot on this one was more linear than some of the earlier volumes in the series, it also felt flatter.  There were moments when I thought that Griffiths was actually trying to develop her main characters, and we certainly got more introspection scenes with Harry, but it still fell a bit flat. 

Although this one isn't as satisfying as previous episodes, I'll definitely check out another in the series when it appears in another year or so. Readers who enjoy this series have too much invested in these characters and Ruth's forensic paleontologist career to leave it dangling here.

Clare Corbett's narration is delightful.  She manages the many dialects and accents of various characters so well, that the listener instantly recognizes who is speaking.  Not only does she get the accents correct, but she manages to infuse her voice with an excellent rendition of the individual's personality. 

Title: A Dying Fall
Author: Elly Griffiths
Publisher: Quercus Publishing audio 2013
Narrator: Clare Corbett
Genre: Mystery (forensic detectives)
Subject: identity of ancient bones
Setting: Norfolk UK
Series: Ruth Galloway Mysteries
Source:  my own shelves (audio book)


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