Monday, June 9, 2014

A ROOM FULL OF BONES by Elly Griffiths


Elly Griffiths' A Room Full of Bones is about just that, a room full of Aboriginal bones.

The bones include three skulls. They are part of the collection now owned by a wealthy Lord, a racing horse stable owner.

The man hires forensic anthropologist Ruth Galloway to look at another set of bones, the bones of his medieval ancestor, a prominent bishop. The bishop pronounced a curse on anyone who disturbed his grave.

The bishop's bones include a huge surprise. Maybe as a result of the bishop's curse, the curator of the rich man's museum dies in suspicious circumstances. Later the rich man himself dies.

This book, like the other Ruth Galloway stories, has all kinds of threads. DCI Harry Nelson and his crew investigate a massive drug smuggling operation. Nelson is the already-married father of Ruth's one-year-old daughter. Ruth's new neighbor heads an Aboriginal group fighting to get his ancestors' bones returned to Australia. He puts curses on two of the people hording the bones. At least one other person also appears to have been sickened by the curse.

This story has familiar characters—Cathbad (Ruth's special friend) with his druid ways, Nelson's team including Judy Johnson and Clough, and many more.

Ruth herself finds a different love interest.

I like the Ruth Galloway books. Reading one is like watching a good action-every-minute forensic show on television.

Griffiths' stories are complex. She fills them with anthropological information. She always has an exciting ending.

I find the Ruth Galloway books to be quick, interesting reading.

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