20 January 2014

Review: THE FUNERAL OWL, Jim Kelly

  • Format Kindle (Amazon)
  • File Size: 909 KB
  • Print Length: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Severn House Digital; First World Publication edition (December 1, 2013)
  • first published 2013
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • #6 in the Philip Dryden series
Synopsis (Amazon)

When a reader contacts local newspaper The Crow to report a rare sighting of the Boreal or so-called 'Funeral' owl, the paper's editor Philip Dryden has a sense of foreboding. For the Funeral Owl is said to be an omen of death.

It's already proving to be one of the most eventful weeks in The Crow's history. The body of a Chinese man has been discovered hanging from a cross in a churchyard in Brimstone Hill in the West Fens. The inquest into the deaths of two tramps found in a flooded ditch has unearthed some shocking findings. A series of metal thefts is plaguing the area. And PC Stokely Powell has requested Dryden's help in solving a ten-year-old cold case: a series of violent art thefts culminating in a horrifying murder.

As Dryden investigates, he uncovers some curious links between the seemingly unrelated cases: it would appear the sighting of the Funeral Owl is proving prophetic in more ways than one.

My Take

I'm not sure whether this is the first Philip Dryden title I've re, but it certainly won't be the last.

As the editor of the local Fenland weekly newspaper The Crow, Dryden has a lot of stories to juggle: metal thieves who have stolen lead from a church roof, cabling from a wind farm resulting in a spectacular fire, and the spikes from a railway track causing a derailment and a huge traffic jam; the Christ Church is short of funds and it's female new-age priest decides she must sell the sexton's cottage promised to its aging incumbent for life; a Korean war veteran with incredibly sensitive hearing is plagued by high pitched noises from a mechanical bird scaring device; two men die from alcohol poisoning from vodka produced by a local illicit still; two teenagers disappear from home in separate incidents; and Chinese triads based in King's Lynn begin a war.

So there is plenty to keep the reader's brain engaged. And then the connections between the plot lines gradually emerge. And of course there are human interest elements in each of the stories.

A good read.

My rating: 4.6

I have reviewed DEATH WORE WHITE (#1 in the Shaw & Valentine series)

1 comment:

Margot Kinberg said...

It does sound a good read, Kerrie - thanks.


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