Divided Loyalty
by Todd, Charles






Investigating the murder of an unknown victim who was found within a great prehistoric circle near Stonehenge, Rutledge follows unreliable clues to an impossible conclusion that places him on the wrong side of Scotland Yard. 100,000 first printing.





How do you solve a murder when you can't identify the victim? That's the question Scotland Yard inspector Ian Rutledge has to answer when his boss sends him to the small village of Avebury, not far from Stonehenge, in 1921, to take a fresh look at the murder of a young woman found by a mysterious stone. A colleague of Rutledge's got nowhere with his investigation, and now Rutledge may be facing the same result. It doesn't help that the meager (and possibly untrustworthy) clues suggest an unbelievable explanation, prompting Rutledge to wonder if this is the case that will finally stump him. With more than 20 novels in nearly 25 years, this is a series, written by a mother-and-son team under the Charles Todd pseudonym, that shows no signs of slowing down. As always, this one combines crisp plotting with stylish prose. Ideal for historical-mystery devotees. Copyright 2020 Booklist Reviews.





How do you solve a murder when you can't identify the victim? That's the question Scotland Yard inspector Ian Rutledge has to answer when his boss sends him to the small village of Avebury, not far from Stonehenge, in 1921, to take a fresh look at the murder of a young woman found by a mysterious stone. A colleague of Rutledge's got nowhere with his investigation, and now Rutledge may be facing the same result. It doesn't help that the meager (and possibly untrustworthy) clues suggest an unbelievable explanation, prompting Rutledge to wonder if this is the case that will finally stump him. With more than 20 novels in nearly 25 years, this is a series, written by a mother-and-son team under the Charles Todd pseudonym, that shows no signs of slowing down. As always, this one combines crisp plotting with stylish prose. Ideal for historical-mystery devotees. Copyright 2020 Booklist Reviews.





Inspector Ian Rutledge's 22nd case revolves around two young women found dead in utterly unexpected places. Scheduled to give evidence in an ongoing investigation, Rutledge can't go to the village of Avebury—where a body has been found stabbed to death in the center of a circle of prehistoric stones—in the place of Chief Inspector Brian Leslie when Rutledge's nemesis, Chief Superintendent Markham, sends Leslie there when he'd been looking forward to a couple of days off. Instead, Rutledge ends up going to the Shropshire village of Tern Bridge, where a woman eventually identified as Bath schoolmistress Serena Palmer has been stabbed and tossed into a grave dug the day before for someone else. After a witness's unexpectedly keen eye and sharp memory puts Rutledge on a trail that leads with disconcerting suddenness to Serena Palmer's killer, he's sent to Avebury after all, since Leslie's conscientiously thorough inquiries have identified neither the killer nor the victim. This mystery, Rutledge finds, is just as murky as the Shropshire murder was clear, and he despairs tha t he'll ever have anything to add to Leslie's report. Constantly threatened by Markham, who's still holding the letter of resignation Rutledge submitted to him after his last case (The Black Ascot, 2019, etc.), and intermittently needled by the ghost of Cpl. Hamish McLeod, the corporal he executed in a trench in 1916 when he refused to lead troops into further fighting in the Somme, Rutledge struggles with a case whose every lead—a necklace of lapis lazuli beads, a trove of letters written to the victim—leads him not so much to enlightenment as to ever deepening sadness. The final twist may not surprise eagle-eyed readers, but it will reveal why Todd's generic-sounding title is painfully apt. If you're in a receptive mood, nobody evokes long postwar shadows or overwhelming postwar grief better than Todd. Copyright Kirkus 2019 Kirkus/BPI Communications. All rights reserved.






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