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Customer Review

VINE VOICEon 9 April 2006
I was surprised to find that this one isn't more popular on these pages. I thought it was very good, and slightly different to the normal English village murder mysteries that Dame Agatha wrote about. This one is quite quirky. There have been a number of inexplicable deaths in the village of Wychwood in recent times - people falling off bridges and ladders, swallowing poison, dying from an infected cut etc - and Luke, a policeman just back from a tour of duty in the Far East, decides to go undercover to investigate. I agree that Luke isn't a strong character, and either Poirot or Miss Marple would have been far better in this role, but even so, this is a darkly brooding little tale. At times Wychwood feels more like it should be a village in a John Wyndham or a Dennis Wheatley novel, with horrible cruelty lurking under civilised surfaces, and Satanic rites being practiced nearby. I personally got the culprit completely wrong, and was utterly convinced it was somebody else entirely right up until the final few pages! I thought the murderer was one of the author's most original and memorable ones I've read so far.
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