The Betrayal of Trust: A Simon Serrailler Novel by Susan Hill
|The Betrayal of Trust: A Simon Serrailler Novel by Susan Hill|
|Reviewer: Sue Magee|
|Summary: Excellent writing and interesting characters offset the fact that this isn't the most complex plot around.|
|Buy? Yes||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 480||Date: September 2012|
After the wettest summer for a hundred years we'll all be familiar with what happened in Lafferton. Heavy rain caused a landslip on the moors, blocking the nearby road. Thankfully, what we're not familiar with was the presence of a shallow grave and the skeleton of a teenage girl. The sharp eyes of one of the forensic team spotted that something wasn't quite right in another area - and a second grave was revealed. It was easy to identify the first body - the young girl had gone missing from the town sixteen years before - but the second body proved more difficult. And, in a time of financial cuts and staff shortages it's down to Detective Chief Superintendent Simon Serrailler to tackle the cold case on his own with just a little help on the new murder case.
When I want a book to relax with it's inevitably a police procedural that comes to hand, but until recently I'd not really noticed Susan Hill's Simon Serrailler series and it was only when I read In the Springtime of the Year and I realised her writing was of such quality that I knew it would be worth reading anything which she wrote, even if it was only a shopping list. But, I was coming in at number seven in an established series. How would I cope?
Well, it simply wasn't a problem. I'm sure that there were areas where I would have gained more from knowing the backstory, but Hill treads a fine line between saying nothing and boring established readers with too much backstory. It's an engaging cast of characters, centring on Serrailller and his widowed sister, Dr Cat Deerbon. There's a thought-provoking theme about the suffering of those with (ultimately) terminal illnesses and those who care for them. I certainly rearranged quite a few of my prejudices about assisted suicide.
The story is a real page turner and I finished the book over a period of about twenty four hours, despite its 470 pages. I was, though, slightly disappointed by the ending as it was just about what I'd been expecting for most of the book, mainly because there was only a limited number of people who were up for the job. It was though one of the few books where this didn't detract too much from the enjoyment mainly because of the quality of the writing.
I'd like to thank the publishers for sending a copy of the book to The Bookbag.
If this book appeals then we think that you might also enjoy The Silence by Alison Bruce and Funeral Note: A Bob Skinner Mystery by Quintin Jardine.
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