Thea Osborne and her faithful spaniel, Hepzie, have taken on another house-sitting assignment, this time in the very quiet village of Temple Guiting. Detective Superintendent Phil Hollis is looking forward to visiting for a night or two and celebrating the couple's one year anniversary, but a slipped disk in Phil's back soon puts an end to their romantic weekend. As it turns out, having a policeman on the scene is not entirely unnecessary in the little village.A few days into their stay, a pile of human bones are discovered in the base of an uprooted tree. There is no concrete evidence as to who the bones belonged to though the locals all have their theories and rumours abound. Thea and Phil find there is a strong connection to the Knights Templar in the village with most locals claiming to be descendants of some or other lineage. Temple Guiting turns out to have more than its fair share of secrets and Thea and Phil find their relationship tested to the limits as they try to prevent another murder investigation from threatening the quiet solitude they hold so dear. Completely unputdownable, "Blood in the Cotswolds" is the fifth in Rebecca Tope's immensely popular series.
Rebecca grew up on farms in the 1950s and 60s, and then went to Swansea University, where she did a BA in English and Philosophy. She had poems and short stories published in small magazines from that time on, but it was only after marrying, producing four children and working at a succession of part-time jobs that she got published with her first crime novel, A DIRTY DEATH. This book is based on childhood memories of farming life. The thrill of publication was slightly marred by the fact that the cow on the cover was a Friesian and not a Jersey. Rebecca still worries that people think she can't tell the difference...
The part-time jobs include freelance indexing and proofreading for London publishers; running antenatal classes for the NCT; counselling couples for Relate; and being the office girl for an undertaker. These were followed by several years as a milk recorder, involving cold dawn visits to mucky farms and working with the wide variety of herdsmen in charge. This experience features prominently in A DEATH TO RECORD. Both this and A DIRTY DEATH are to be reissued in 2012.
She currently writes the Thea Osborne Cotswolds crime series, which is gaining in popularity with every passing week.