10 June 2021

Review: THE LANTERN MEN, Elly Griffiths

  • this edition published in 2020 by Quercus

  • ISBN 9-781787-477544
  • 363 pages
  • #12 in the Ruth Galloway series

Synopsis (Fantastic Fiction)

Everything has changed for Dr Ruth Galloway.

She has a new job, home and partner, and is no longer North Norfolk police's resident forensic archaeologist. That is, until convicted murderer Ivor March offers to make DCI Nelson a deal. Nelson was always sure that March killed more women than he was charged with. Now March confirms this, and offers to show Nelson where the other bodies are buried - but only if Ruth will do the digging.

Curious, but wary, Ruth agrees. March tells Ruth that he killed four more women and that their bodies are buried near a village bordering the fens, said to be haunted by the Lantern Men, mysterious figures holding lights that lure travellers to their deaths.

Is Ivor March himself a lantern man, luring Ruth back to Norfolk? What is his plan, and why is she so crucial to it? And are the killings really over? 

My Take

The beginning of this book took me by surprise! Ruth has changed jobs, and moved into Cambridge (and I have only missed 2 books in the series!). She even has a new partner. I presume she is trying to establish a life without Harry Nelson. She and Katie are settled in their new surroundings and relationships, have been there about two years I think, but she thinks of Nelson constantly.

But all comes unstuck when convicted murderer Ivor March offers to tell Nelson where some more bodies are buried, on condition that Ruth does the excavation. So once again Ruth and Nelson are thrown together and life become compliacted.

I thoroughly enjoyed this story. Elly Griffiths has lost none of her touch.

My rating: 4.7

I've also read

Dr Ruth Galloway Mysteries
   1. The Crossing Places (2009)
   2. The Janus Stone (2010)
   3. The House at Sea's End (2011)
   4. A Room Full of Bones (2011)
   4.5. Ruth's First Christmas Tree (2012)
   5. A Dying Fall (2012)
   6. The Outcast Dead (2014)
   7. The Ghost Fields (2015)
   8. The Woman in Blue (2016)
   9. The Chalk Pit (2017)
   10. The Dark Angel (2018)
   11. The Stone Circle (2019)
   12. The Lantern Men (2020)
   13. The Night Hawks (2021)
   14. The Locked Room (2022) 

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