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Book Review: The Burning by M.R.Hall

A family tragedy. A buried secret. What lies hidden in the flames? A dense, bitterly cold fog has settled over the Wye Valley when Bristol Coroner Jenny Cooper is called to the scene of a dreadful tragedy: in the village of Blackstone Ley, a house has burned to the ground with three members of a family inside.

the-burningThough evidence of foul play is quickly uncovered, it isn’t long before the police investigation is drawn to a close. It seems certain that the fire was started by one of the victims, Ed Morgan, in a fit of jealous rage. But their infant son is still missing and Ed had left a message for his surviving wife, Kelly Hart, telling her that she would never find the child…As Jenny prepares the inquest, she finds herself troubled by the official version of events.

This is the 6th instalment of The bestselling Jenny Cooper series by Monmouthshire author M.R.Hall. Having read the other 5 books, I find M.R. Hall’s style to be as compelling as ever. The mystery element is always intriguing, tightly plotted and often unexpected – and the characters always illicit an emotional response. The legal aspect of a coroner’s work is authentic and Jenny Cooper herself is an interesting protagonist both in how she thinks and acts…and realistically flawed.

Book-ish is hosting an evening with M.R. Hall on Friday 3rd October at The Bear Hotel in Crickhowell starting at 7:30pm

Review by Emma Corfield-Walters

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