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The Shattered Tree

The Shattered Tree (2016) Charles Todd (Bess Crawford) Set in France in 1918. Bess Crawford is back towards the front when a soldier in a French uniform is brought in, suffering from blood loss, his feet torn up because someone stole his boots before he fled across no-man’s land. But when the soldier unconsciously yells […]

A Pattern of Lies

A Pattern of Lies (2015) Charles Todd (Bess Crawford) Set in England and France in 1918. Stuck in Canterbury waiting for a transport train to take her to London, Bess meets a soldier she had helped nurse back to health. Invited to spend the night with his family when the train is further delayed, she […]

Tales: Short Stories Featuring Ian Rutledge and Bess Crawford

Tales: Short Stories Featuring Ian Rutledge and Bess Crawford (2015) Charles Todd This collection is four short stories with Bess Crawford and Ian Rutledge. “The Kidnapping” “The Girl on the Beach” “Cold Comfort” “The Maharani’s Pearls” “The Kidnapping” – Ian Rutledge, London 1920 I actually have a copy of this short story, but it had […]

A Pattern of Lies

A Pattern of Lies (2015) Charles Todd Set in Europe in Autumn 1918 It’s time to take a break from this series. Reading one after the other is making me notice the weaknesses rather than the strengths. It’s unfortunately, because I thought the bits about the mill were very interesting. (A) mill had to be […]

An Unwilling Accomplice

An Unwilling Accomplice (2014) Charles Todd Set in Europe in Autumn 1818. I may need to step away from this series for a little bit, or at least read something in between books, because I’m beginning to wonder just how much murder a nursing sister in the Great War can possibly witness/get involved in. That […]

A Question of Honor

A Question of Honor (2013) Charles Todd Set in Europe during the summer of 1818. I still really like this historical bits of these stories. The war is still ranging, influenza is still decimating the ranks on both sides, and the militaries are learning how to fight this “new” war. Since the institution of helmets […]

An Unmarked Grave

An Unmarked Grave (2012) Charles Todd Set in Europe in the spring of 1918. A new enemy has entered the war, one that indiscriminately cuts down both sides. The Spanish Influenza had already cut down three of our nursing sisters, and two doctors were not expected to live through the night. The rest of us […]

A Bitter Truth

A Bitter Truth (2011) Charles Todd Set in Europe in 1917 Bess Crawford is back in London on leave from the war when she finds a young woman hiding in her doorway. Deciding to help her leads to a chain of events including the uncovering of murder. I do love the historical settings of WWI. […]

An Impartial Witness

An Impartial Witness (2010) Charles Todd Set in Europe in 1917. Nursing sister Bess Crawford has just escorted a group of wounded soldiers back to London, including a terribly burned pilot whose picture of his wife was what he turned to through his excruciating first days. When that woman’s murdered body is discovered, Bess realizes […]

A Duty to the Dead

A Duty to the Dead (2009) Charles Todd Set in Europe in 1916 Bess Crawford is a nursing sister on the HMHS Britannic when its sunk by the Germans. She’s sent him to recuperate, and also to deliver a message given to her by a dying soldier. The mystery here is good, but what I […]

Legacy of the Dead

Legacy of the Dead (2000) Charles Todd The fourth Inspector Ian Rutledge mystery finds Rutledge sent to Scotland–the last place he wants to go, for he still hears the voice of Hamish MacLeod over his shoulder, haranguing him, and reminding him of the dead lost in France during the Great War. But Lady Maude Gray […]

The Mammoth Book of Historical Crime Fiction

The Mammoth Book of Historical Crime Fiction (2011) edited by Mike Ashley Introduction: Return to the Crime Scene by Mike Ashley Archimedes and the Scientific Method by Tom Holt Something to do with Diana by Steven Saylor Eyes of the Icon by Mary Reed and Eric Mayer Night of the Snow Wolf by Peter Tremayne […]

The Kidnapping

The Kidnapping () Charles Todd This is a single short story, and three excerpts, which I sort of found annoying, although I have to admit, that as far as excerpts go, they were interesting. The Kidnapping is a very brief story that finds Ian Rutledge drug into a kidnapping case, when a wild-eyed and disheveled […]

Search the Dark

Search the Dark (1999) Charles Todd This is the third Inspector Ian Rutledge mystery. A man goes made on a train, believe he’s seen his wife and children, who were killed when their house collapsed and burned during the war. When a woman’s body appears–badly beaten and disfigured–suspicion falls upon the man. But no one […]

An Unmarked Grave

An Unmarked Grave (2012) Charles Todd The fourth Bess Crawford mystery finds the Spanish Influenza doing more damage to the soldiers fighting–and the civilians at home–than the Great War itself was doing. I’ve been morbidly fascinated by this flu since I learned about it. It was truly a horrible disease, killing the young and healthy […]

Wings of Fire

Wings of Fire (1998) Charles Todd The second Ian Rutledge mystery finds Rutledge sent to Cornwall, to look into the deaths of a prominent family: a double suicide and a fall. Adding to the confusion, one of the suicides turned out to be a famous poet, O.A. Manning, whose poems of love and war and […]

A Bitter Truth

A Bitter Truth (2011) Charles Todd In the third Bess Crawford mystery, Bess has returned home for Christmas leave, but before she makes it to her parent’s home, she discovers a young woman huddled in her doorway. Taking pity on her, she ends up returning home with the woman, to make sure she is safe. […]

A Test of Wills

A Test of Wills (1996) Charles Todd This was a re-read. After reading and thoroughly enjoying the Bess Crawford mystery, I remembered I had several books in Charles Todd’s Ian Rutledge series, and decided to reread them. Inspector Rutledge of Scotland Yard served in the Great War, and he’s suffering shell shock from his experiences […]

An Impartial Witness

An Impartial Witness (2010) Charles Todd Bess Crawford is escorting wounded soldiers back to London, including a pilot who was badly burned, and whose thoughts of his wife seem to be what is pulling him through the horror of his injuries. Bess sees the wife, making a tearful plea to a soldier, but before Bess […]

A Duty to the Dead

A Duty to the Dead (2009) Charles Todd Bess Crawford is serving as a nurse in the Great War. The hospital ship on which she was serving was sunk, and although she survives, a badly broken arm sends her back to London to recuperate. A promise made to a soldier who died from his wounds […]

Wings of Fire

Wings of Fire (1998) Charles Todd Wow. Just like the first book, A Test of Wills, the second book, Wings of Fire was also quite depressing. Which leads to me to wonder: why am I surprised that a murder mystery is depressing? After all, the very premise of a murder mystery is that someone has […]

A Test of Wills

A Test of Wills (1996) Charles Todd Inspector Ian Rutledge has returned from the Great War a far different man than when he left Scotland Yard for the Army. He returned to England suffering from shell shock and only with after a great effort was he able to return to Scotland Yard. Unfortunately for him, […]

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