The Crossing Places by Elly Griffiths

I just finished this nice cozy mystery this week.  Reading this brings me back to the thought that in another life, I would love to be a forensic anthropologist.  The work is detailed, meticulous and organized yet they are also looking for questions.  I like her quote that often all you find are questions and not always the answers.  The book has many twists and turns between characters which was interesting and makes for a nice read.  However, I knew who did it from the moment the character was introduced, so that was not as good.

The mystery is set in England on the edge of a salt marsh.  The main character, Ruth, owns a small house on the edge of this desolate marsh, and yet it is the place where she enjoys the mysteries that are unearthed there, both while working on an archeological dig and while helping the police solve a murder of a young girl.  The bones she finds link the mystery from the present to the question of what passed before.  Questions that we can never truly answer as we really can’t understand the philosophy and mores of a culture that was during the Iron Age.

The crossing places refers to the idea that there is a sense of power and mystery at those places that cross from dry land to water, such as the salt marsh which lies  between the land and the ocean.  There are really two mysteries wrapped into one which end up merging into one at the end.  I also like how the book compares and contrasts the worlds of academia and law enforcement.  How these two don’t always see eye to eye very well, especially when political expedience wins over archeological treasures.  Sometimes a mall is just seen as more important than a historical site, as we all know too well.

This book marks the start of a new series and I definitely plan on following up on the next entry.

2 Replies to “The Crossing Places by Elly Griffiths”

  1. I’m looking forward to reading this one. I’ve actually just recently finished the second in the series, The Janus Stone, and now have The Crossing Places lined up in my TBR pile. The setting is marvelous!

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