I do like this curmudgeonly older cop and his grieving Sargent, Jean too, I’ve fallen in love with them. This book comes with a few complicated plots and stories that are told so well I found I was drawn to them and repelled by them in equal measure, a lot of nastiness is uncovered, can it be proven? Travelling takes place to solve the murders, the ending was a thorough surprise I didn’t see coming at all! A very enjoyable book to read, it makes me want more of this crime solving duo and the lives they live themselves and uncover of others.
Australian author Phillip Strang has gained his platform as an adventure writer through his career installing telecommunications networks in many remote and exotic parts of the globe, including time spent in Afghanistan and Pakistan - an experience that allowed him to gain direct insights in to the ongoing conflicts there. He has also spent considerable time in Africa including Liberia, Nigeria, and Guinea. It is this direct contact with troubled countries that gives his books intense credibility: he has first hand contact with the events he shares in his books such as DI TREMAYNE Thriller Series, of which this is Book 7 – the first books are DEATH UNHOLY, DEATH AND THE ASSASSIN’S BLADE, DEATH AND THE LUCKY MAN, DEATH AT COOMBE FARM, DEATH BY A DEAD MAN’S HAND, DEATH IN THE VILLAGE and now BURIAL MOUND.
But it takes more than on the spot witness to bring the story Phillip has written to life in the format of a book - and that is where he towers above others creating novels with similar storylines. To bring a story of this magnitude into focus it is imperative that the foundation of the place and the people are presented accurately in order to bring the terror that is to come to meaningful life. Phillip sets his stage well from the very first page: ‘ Archaeology was never of much interest to Detective Inspector Keith Tremayne, a man whose idea of a fun weekend was not ferreting around on his hands and knees with a small trowel and a soft brush. Not that Clare Yarwood, his sergeant, saw it that way. She reveled in the history of Salisbury and the area – its acknowledged pinnacle for hordes of tourists, Stonehenge. However, the thought of the monument, built high on Salisbury Plain by Neolithic ancestors five thousand years previously, brought out negative emotions in her, as it was the site of a murder earlier in her career.’ Scene set with only a hint of what is to come.’
The story is distilled well in Phillip’s synopsis: ‘A Bronze-Age burial mound close to Stonehenge, an archaeological excavation. The expectation: an ancient body, historical artifacts. They did not expect to find a recent burial there as well. It’s another case for Detective Inspector Tremayne and Sergeant Yarwood. The more recent of the two bodies, the brother of the mayor of Salisbury. The person responsible keeps leading back to the brother, the upright and serious-minded Clive Grantley. Tremayne’s sure that it’s him, but Clare Yarwood’s not so sure. But is her belief based on evidence or personal hope?’
Elegant writing and a keen sense of suspense – this is another Phillip Strang winner! Grady Harp, May 19