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Food of Ghosts (The Scottish Lady Detective mysteries Book 1) [Kindle Edition]

Marianne Wheelaghan
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)

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Book Description

'Set against an exotic backdrop, this thriller has a complex heroine who's as fragile as she is feisty - and who must tackle culture clashes and family ties as well as crime if she's to survive.' Karen Campbell

Nothing ever happens on Tarawa, a coral atoll in the middle of the Pacific. Then a mutilated body is found in a children's nursery hut. Detective Sergeant Louisa Townsend from Edinburgh is on the island, helping train local police officers in basic detecting skills. She is asked to find the killer and jumps at the chance to be in charge of her first murder investigation. She marvels at the simplicity of the task ahead - after all, how difficult can it be to find the murderer on a desert island the size of a postage stamp and with only one road? But nothing on Tarawa is what it seems. There is a rumour the victim's eyes were eaten as part of a macabre, cannibalistic ritual and a second body is found and a third death looks suspicious. With no forensics on Tarawa and no one telling the truth, Louisa begins to worry she's out of her depth - not to mention the voices in her head have started up again. DS Townsend is an engaging, new female detective from Edinburgh, who is as impetuous as she is ambitious, with an innate sense of justice at her core. Her determination to find the killer is matched only by her struggle to overcome an obsessive compulsive disorder, which threatens to consume her. To read Food of Ghosts is to be taken to Tarawa and be immersed in the crazy sights and sounds of the contradictory island and its people. Food of Ghosts is the first in a series of crime novels featuring DS Louisa Townsend.

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Product Description


'Set against an exotic backdrop, this thriller has a complex heroine who's as fragile as she is feisty - and who must tackle culture clashes and family ties as well as crime if she's to survive.' Karen Campbell --Karen Campbell

About the Author

Edinburgh-born writer, Marianne Wheelaghan, has travelled extensively. She now lives back in Edinburgh with her family. When she is not writing, she is managing her online writing school ( Food of Ghosts is her debut crime novel, and second novel, the first being The Blue Suitcase. The Blue Suitcase was published in 2010 to great acclaim and is an historic fiction, partly based on a true-life story, which tells the remarkable account of a teenage girl growing up in Nazi Germany. Food Of Ghosts is the first in a series of crime novels set in the Pacific and featuring the exciting new, feisty fictional detective DS Louisa Townsend. The second Pacific crime novel is due out in 2014.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1028 KB
  • Print Length: 310 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Pilrig Press (4 Nov. 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00A2AAG1G
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #165,398 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Before becoming a writer, Edinburgh-born Marianne Wheelaghan was a croupier, a marketing manager, a chambermaid, a cashier, a Brussels sprouts picker, but mostly she was a teacher. Marianne taught English and Drama in Germany, Spain, the Republic of Kiribati and Papua New Guinea. She also wrote plays. Marianne now lives back in Edinburgh with her family. When she is not writing, she is running the online creative writing school

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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hugely enjoyable 11 Nov. 2012
By Ignite TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Louisa, a Detective Sergeant, goes to the Gilbert Island of Tarawa as a European Commission trainer. She was born on the island and lived there till she was eight, when she moved with her family to Edinburgh. While there, she is face with a murder and a huge amount of frustration. The police have no radios, there is no SOCO service and the mortuary freezer's broken, still awaiting a part. Her frustration is compounded by the archaic views of her male colleagues and the cultural differences between people in her Scottish home and those on the island. She is faced with bullying, monstrous injustice and some very nasty expatriates.

This is one of the quirkiest detective stories I've ever read. The situations Louise finds herself in are funny, infuriating and completely gripping. There's the magic of the island with its family centred culture and the mystery of the increasing body count. The character of Louisa, with her deep sense of justice, her mild OCD and her extended island family to complicate matters, is surely one we must see again. Marianne Wheelaghan is a great story teller and she's created a potential series here. This is a hugely enjoyable book, complex and engaging, and I hope there will be more of the same to come.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A satisfying read 16 Nov. 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
In her latest book Food of Ghosts Marianne Wheelaghan deftly switches genres to create an inventive and satisfying murder mystery set in the remote Pacific atoll of Tarawa. The main character is Detective Sergeant Louisa Townsend who has recently returned to the place of her birth. After many years in Scotland she is now an I-Matang, an outsider who struggles to make sense of a culture she left when she was eight years old. Brought in to act as a consultant to improve local police methods, circumstances place her in charge of a gruesome murder investigation.

Wheelaghan's earlier book The Blue Suitcase made me a fan. I waited eagerly for Food of Ghosts and was not disappointed. There is much here to please the reader. The murder mystery is inventive and keeps you guessing until the end of the book. As appealing is the sense of place and culture that Wheelaghan weaves into the story. Once again Marianne Wheelaghan demonstrates that she is up to the task. I read the book in one day. I think other readers will find it as compelling.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Highly recommended! 15 Nov. 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I enjoy a well written crime thriller, and this certainly fits the bill. DS Townsend is a complex character with her weaknesses as well as strengths - weaknesses that are particularly tested in her posting on Kiribati. The local atmosphere is very well established and maintained with plenty of references to local sites, institutions, characters and culture. I spent a week or so on Tarawa en route to and from the island of Banaba to shoot a BBC documentary: I found Food of Ghosts evoked many of the aspects of life that I remember from my visit. But while knowing a bit about Tarawa and Kiribati enhanced my enjoyment of the novel, I am confident that it stands well on its own as an intriguing crime thriller set in an exotic (but by no means paradisical) location. Highly recommended.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing!!!! 3 Dec. 2012
By Holly.
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Food of ghosts by Marianne wheelaghan.

I have just finished Food of ghosts. I thought it was really well written and kept me guessing to who murdered who right till the end. I thought Louisa was very interesting the way. She fought her own inner demons with needing to be clean and bad thoughts, while being sounded by mess and dead people. When she found the dead guy with missing eyes, it made me want to vomit there was enough mood setting and deception though out this book to make you feel like you were seeing it for yourself .

I love the brief manhood nudity. It made me laugh so much. I think this book takes you on a journey through the Island and made you want to find the murderer. I so wanted to bang Nicole's and Christine's heads together by the middle of the book they defiantly were entertaining with their gossiping bitchy ways.

I had best stop there or I will end up giving away the story and I don't wanna do that.
This book is one to read on a cold night and you won't be able to put it down till gone 1 am. I couldn't and will likely read it again it was great.

This book is a huge credit to Marianne. She should be super proud of herself on a gut churning sensitive, gripping keeping you on the edge of your seat novel.

I had to stay up just know how it ended. And it definitely didn't disappoint.

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Refreshing read! 1 Feb. 2013
By Dot
Food of Ghosts is the first in a series of books about DS Townsend. I haven't read anything by this author before but I really enjoyed this book.
The book is set on the tiny island of Tarawa, Louisa is originally from the island but she is visiting from Edinburgh where she now lives and works. Her job is to teach local police basic detecting skills but when a man is found dead with his eyes gouged out, she is put in charge of a full blown murder investigation. However, this is not Edinburgy; Louisa really has her work cut out, there is no forensic unit and her colleagues don't have a clue how to investigate anything. As more bodies begin piling up, Louisa is majorly under pressure.
I found this book really interesting, the island setting adds a totally different element to the standard detective story; it adds a lot of humour due to Louisa finding herself in so many bizarre situations. Her OCD makes her job even harder but makes her character more interesting, her problem is quite individual, it was a breath of fresh air compared to the drink problem or recent divorce that most fictional detectives are experiencing.
Food of Ghosts reminded me a little of The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency series. As with those books, the case being investigated is interesting but it is the setting and the characters which make the book.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars In the middle of the Pacific Ocean, no one can hear you scream....
Food for Ghosts is set on Tarawa, a coral atoll in the Pacific republic of Kiribati. The detective who ends up investigating the murder which happens here was born on the island... Read more
Published 2 days ago by The booktrail
5.0 out of 5 stars 5 stars!!
What a fantastic read, a gripping story with very interesting characters.
Published 4 months ago by hollyduff91
5.0 out of 5 stars A gripping read!
A gripping thriller which I couldn't put down - set in an exotic location to give the story a Pacific twist! Read more
Published 13 months ago by Liane Adam
4.0 out of 5 stars Unusual setting, beguiling heroine
I hope this is the first of a series. Marianne Wheelaghan has taken the classic writer advice - write about what you know. Read more
Published 22 months ago by Amazon-fan
5.0 out of 5 stars Something new and interesting!
I found this book while filtering through looking for something different to read.
I was drawn in by the front cover, but the rest of the book took me by surprise! Read more
Published on 18 Feb. 2013 by John Russel
3.0 out of 5 stars A minority view
I found this book quite boring, certainly not gripping like other reviewers. It is well written but Louisa is a strange character - arrogant with OCD compulsions. Read more
Published on 17 Feb. 2013 by Elaine Tomasso
5.0 out of 5 stars A thrilling, entertaining and exotic whodunnit which will keep you...
Detective Sergeant Louisa Townsend has recently been sent back to the island of her birth, Tarawa, to help the police force. Shortly after she arrives a grisly murder takes place. Read more
Published on 19 Dec. 2012 by Kendra
5.0 out of 5 stars Food of Ghosts
I absolutely loved this book. I'm not normally a fan of crime novels but this story is a little bit different. Read more
Published on 21 Nov. 2012 by Elaine Murphy
5.0 out of 5 stars Gripping crime novel!
I haven't read many crime novels in the past, however this book was recommended to me by a friend. I thought I would give it a go and I was not disappointed! Read more
Published on 20 Nov. 2012 by Gianna
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