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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Neil Watson has received some strange anonymous letters which seem to relate to the archaeological dig on which he is currently occupied. They keep referring to blood and asking what happened to Brother William. Even Neil is spooked by them and not much normally worries him. His friend DI Wesley Peterson is fully occupied with the horrific murder of a local business man and he does not pay as much attention to Neil's worries about the letters as perhaps he should be doing.

Then another man is murdered in a similar fashion and Neil discovers what appears to be evidence of the regular blood-letting of the monks who formerly owned the site he is investigating. Both Neil and Wesley start to think there are far too many references to blood around; and Gerry Heffernan - Wesley's boss - is worried that the local paper seems to have inside information about how the investigation is progressing.

I thought this book was perhaps the most disturbing so far in the series and there is a thoroughly eerie feeling to the whole story. It is far from clear who is the murderer and the majority of readers will be left as much in the dark as the police are until very close to the end of the book. The dramatic ending is one of the best I've read so far in this series.

If you want believable characters and dialogue and a complex plot with a historical dimension then this is a book worth trying. The books can be read in any order but if you want to follow the development of the characters and their personal lives then the books are best read in the order in which they were published starting with The Merchant's House (The Wesley Peterson Series)
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on 13 June 2008
The basic stoyline is that a body had been found drained of blood and it's up to Wesley Petersen to find who, what and why.

The story is well put together and there isn't a wasted word in my opinion! Bit by bit titbits of information are revealed but it had me stumped right up to the end.

A thoroughly entertaining and well plotted crime novel.

I really enjoyed this book, and am eagerly awaiting the next one in the series!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
I've read most of Ellis's Wesley Peterson series and this surpasses all the others and I could give 6 stars for this. Sheer brilliance of plot with so much action, twists, turns, red herrings. Lots of development of background - Pam's ongoing change of attitude, Wesley's sister's new marriage to Mark, Gerry's relations with Joyce and his daughter. Pretty descriptions of the delightful area around Dartmouth. Then there are the crimes - bloodthirsty and very different, involving Neil in stress which he doesn't usually suffer from. Amazing. A tremendous read if you like action. This will keep you guessing right to the end.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon 29 June 2008
Often in a well-established series there is a dip in impetus at some point. The opposite can be said of Kate Ellis' work with the 12th in the DI Wesley Peterson series being totally absorbing.
This is gripping from the first to the last page with the identity of the villians masked to the end.
There are several characters, from all walks of life, expertly depicted and woven into the plots that at no point leave the reader confused. There is a high level of mystery throughout interspersed with insight into Wesley's home life and emotions that continue to make him very real.
The dialogue and prose is unforced and relevant.
On top of all this the historical element adds something very different to the modern day crime novel.
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on 15 September 2013
#12 in the Wesley Peterson series and Kate Ellis maintains her high standards.
Two minor culinary quibbles p.55 "Petronella could smell alcohol on her breath".
This is always written in books,newspapers etc but alcohol is odourless. What you smell in Whisky,Gin,Rum.Beer etc is the flavourings, a spirit such as Vodka would be undetectable.
P.297 has tomato soup being doled out to the homeless. Very tasty and nutritious no doubt but I feel something more like a Irish Stew would better meet their needs.
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on 6 March 2015
Mixing history, archaeology and murder make an interesting combination in this series. Inspector Wesley Peterson, of West Indian heritage but now based in Devon with his family, has another unusual case to solve. This coincides with an archaeological dig being carried out in the area by his friend, Neil Watson, who gets involved with an investigation of his own into the past.
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on 20 March 2013
Yet another good read from Kate Ellis. What else can I say - enjoy it yourself. Love the way there are 3 stories on the go at once, the crime, the historical content and the development of the lives and relationships of the main characters.
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on 2 May 2015
Having read all the prvious books I can reccomend this Kate Ellis book. Her distinct syle makes you want to real right to the end of the book. I look forward to reading all the others
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on 2 May 2014
Kate Ellis is a fabulous read, sending the reader off into a world of intrigue. This is to replace a paperback with a hard cover and be added to my ever growing Kate Ellis collection
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on 28 March 2013
A Good tale and interesting historical detail. Interesting insight into the lives Of monks and mediaeval medicine As well as a good detective story
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