A deeply satisfying short read
Short reads are having a moment. This detective story is a stunning example, packing tons of twists and emotional development into two hours. It’s a deeply satisfying read.
Fleeing his demons to fight crime
Detective Inspector Jeff Lincoln has fled a failing marriage and personal tragedy to fight crime in England’s West Country. The city of Barbury might seem sleepy, but a stabbing on the local council estate and thefts from the museum keep him busy. Then there’s the archaeological dig near the abbey, where volunteers appear to be falling victim to a mysterious assailant, perhaps even to each other.
While Nikki Copleston focuses on Jeff’s point of view, she also gives us insights into the thoughts of his colleagues, and other leading characters. There’s Beth Tarrant, for example, leading the dig and hoping to solve a family mystery while she uncovers the remains. Meanwhile, Trish Whittington, local librarian and Jeff’s lover, isn’t too besotted to ignore a sexy archaeologist.
Twists layered upon twists
Twists multiply and build upon each other, as Jeff links the crimes together and then finds his theories unravelling. Despite the complexity of the plot, the flow of the story is smooth, its separate strands neatly woven together at the end.
Nikki Copleston is a class act, writing flawlessly and covering an amazing amount of detail in this interesting novella. It is the second book in a series about DI Jeff Lincoln (the others are all longer), but can be read as a standalone. ‘A Saintly Grave Disturbed‘ is a great way to dip a toe in the water and see if you enjoy Jeff Lincoln’s world. I suspect you will be hooked!
Do you like short crime reads? Then you’ll love ‘A Hint of Crime’, an anthology of short crime stories by the Bristol Fiction Writers’ Group. I’ve contributed three tales, all with a tantalising hint of mystery.