Tuesday, 12 August 2014

The Killings at Badgers Drift by Caroline Graham

She had been walking in the woods just before teatime when she saw them. 

Pronouns walking and seeing pronouns. We must assume that this is not good because the alternative is to think that "them" means birds or something and that there is nothing really interesting happening here.

Walking very quietly although that had not been her intention. It was just that the spongy underlay of leaf mould and rotting vegetation muffled every footfall. The trees, tall and packed close together, also seemed to absorb sound. In one or two places the sun pierced through the closely entwined branches, sending dazzling shafts of hard white light into the darkness below.

We learn that someone is danger. The scene is tense but I skipped most of it. Someone in the woods, running from persons unknown for reasons unknown. A fairly roundabout way to announce that someone dies.

Chapter 1:

‘There’s something very wrong here and I expect you to do something about it. Isn’t that what the police are for?’

I generally like cozy mysteries, especially if they are set in the UK. I've watched this TV series on occasion and liked it, so I thought it would be interesting to check out the book that started it all. The line above is the opening line of chapter 1 and is also the first thing said. It's effective dialogue because it moves the plot forward. A concerned friend of the prologuie is going to the police to have them check the prologuie's death, that it wasn't an accident.

Sergeant Troy observed his breathing, a trick he had picked up from a colleague at Police Training College who was heavily into T’ai Ch’i and other faddy Eastern pursuits. The routine came in very handy when dealing with abusive motorists, boot-deploying adolescents and, as now, with barmy old ladies.

The character description above is fun.

Verdict: Pass

I'll give this three stars because of chapter 1, the scene, the mystery of a suspicious death, that we know is murder because of the prologue and the characters that are revealed right out of the gate.

I also like the title. Not sure why, I just like it.

Theodore Moracht

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