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on 12 August 2014
I've been a fan of true crime for a long time and was excited to see one about an area I knew well but quite frankly, whether you know east Anglia or not, this book is a masterpiece.

Mixing beautiful writing styles with rare and exclusive facts this is one of the greatest books I've read and I'd recommend it to anyone who's interested in the genre or murder mysteries in general.

Last but not least a new feature Elphick uses that I'd not seen before are the fascinating legal sections which assess how the cases had affected the law or would have been different in another time!

All in all, this is a truly great read that's smart interesting exciting and even witty. I will urge everyone I know to dig into this book 5/5.
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on 22 February 2015
*warning* This woman is insane (but you wouldn't know it from the innocence of her face) with such gruesome interests I wouldn't be surprised if she's involved in a few suspicious deaths herself. Maybe a few bus thefts too. But she's also wacky, wonderful, and most important of all PASSIONATE! Mix that with her intelligence, backed by an extensive knowledge of law, and you have the perfect combination for a book of this genre. Normally I stick to fiction because I find non fiction such a snore. However Elphicks accounts are fascinating while still maintaining the facts, adding a dimension that keeps the reader hooked. with stories from a hundred years ago you feel like you're in the room at that moment.

A great feature is how it's open to more than one audience. The division of story and 'legal ponderings' means if you're not necessarily interested in the inner workings of the law you could choose to avoid the more wordy parts and just enjoy the perfect story telling. BUT you'd be mad as that's where this author shines brightest! Going deeper into the tale, explaining life during that time, and analysing the cases.

What I particularly enjoyed is that even with her own knowledge of the legal system she makes no assumptions as to what the reader knows, as I'm sure other authors would (probably gained from her years as a highly capable teacher) this means that there's a consistent understanding of the important facts that don't hinder the over all flow of the book. I'm only part way through so far but I'm looking forward to reading on! It'll also be exciting to see if this author releases anything else in the future
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on 14 August 2014
Thought provoking, dark and extremely entertaining. A wonderful insight into how even the most seemly peaceful of all places can hold the most terrifying secrets.
Elphicks legal ponderings take you deeper into the cases and offer a fascinating and fresh perspective that most other crime novels lack.
You will not be able to put this book down and it will make you think twice before heading out at night in a seemingly sleepy village! A must read!
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on 25 October 2014
I have to say from the off that this book is brilliant. I don't read a lot and when I do its usually fiction, but a friend of mine recommended this to me as I live in Norfolk, and I have to say that I loved it. It's interesting that I was learning not only about the history of this country but also about the way crime and punishment has evolved. Best of all, the author writes each chapter in a way that seems as though I'm reading a thrilling novel! I found myself really interested in the stories, and was hanging out every piece of descriptive imagery that was woven in to this book. Such a good read, really recommend it to anyone looking for a new book to read. Fiction and non fiction lovers alike will love this book.
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on 1 September 2014
Fantastic book, I found it so interesting to read and was blown away by the murderous deeds which fill the sleep rural villages of my home. I am eagerly awaiting the next book by Joanna Elphick. :)
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on 18 November 2015
An informative and interesting review of past criminals of East Anglia. The book did feel a little sensationalised at times and written in a fictional manner, rather than the true account it could have been. Despite the intimation that East Anglia was a Murderers Haunt, with a murderer hidden behind every bush, it didn't really live up to expectations. An interesting read nonetheless.
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on 13 February 2015
This is a brilliant read. The author cleverly mixes intrigue with the human story which puts you right at the heart of the events so that you can sympathize with all concerned. The icing comes from the legal insights which explains the contemporary view concisely without dry lengthy discourse. I hope the next volume is in production.
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on 1 September 2014
Such a fantastic read, my former law tutor is now a brilliant author.
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on 7 October 2014
A fantastic read that puts a new twist on sleepy East Anglia. As always I look forward to reading more by Jo and am eagerly anticipating her long awaited novel on Jack the Ripper!
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on 7 December 2014
What's not to love? This book has an abundance of murder and mystery, as well as a fascinating insight into the law, all written in a unique writing style.
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