Elly Griffiths pens one of my favourite mystery series - The Ruth Galloway books. The eleventh book in the series - The Stone Circle - has just released.
Ruth is a forensic archaeologist at the University in North Norfolk, England. An expert in bones, she is often called in to assist police, museums and on other digs. And it is DCI Harry Nelson that calls on Ruth's expertise. The two have a complicated past and present. It is this element of the series that has me always curious as what will happen next. The married Nelson is father to Ruth's daughter Kate. And the attraction is still there between Harry and Ruth, despite the fact that his wife is expecting a child.
But Griffith's mysteries are just as intriguing. The stone henges and salt marshes that opened this series make another appearance. A young girl's remains are found during a dig in the marsh. And Nelson is receiving anonymous letters telling him to go the stone circle and look for the innocent. Much of this mirrors the first case that Ruth and Harry worked on together. As does the appearance of a archaeologist with ties to that first case. I've learned something from every book in this series as Griffiths' cases use history as a basis.
There are many supporting players that I've come to enjoy (and dislike) as well. Griffiths has also fleshed them out with rich, full personal lives. Ruth's boss Phil's pronouncements are always good for a chuckle. Judy and Clough, who work with Harry, are part of Ruth's life as well. This is what I enjoy so much - Griffiths doesn't let her characters be - their lives are evolving as they would in real life. But my personal favourite is the enigmatic Cathbad, self proclaimed Druid.
Setting is also a character in Griffiths' books. The Norfolk area, while seemingly bleak, is beautiful in Ruth's eyes. I think I would enjoy living in her little cottage in the Saltmarsh, 'where the sea and the sky meet.'
I can't say enough about this series - I absolutely recommend it. Read an excerpt of The Stone Circle. But do yourself a favor and start with the first book in the series - The Crossing Places.