Monday 6 June 2011

A Watery Grave by Jean Chapman

We returned from a wonderful fortnight on the beautiful island of Corfu on Friday.  Two weeks of clear blue skies, lots of relaxing, strolling in the countryside, great food and drink and of course, lots and lots of reading.  Pure bliss!

Greece is one of my favourite places in the world and I especially enjoy visiting Corfu - Arillas is in the north-west part of the island, it's a tiny resort, very unspoilt and still quite traditional.  With chickens and geese running around outside our room and fresh eggs every morning for breakfast, it really was the perfect break.

Before I left I was contacted by Jean Chapman, the author of A Watery Grave - a crime mystery novel set in the Lincolnshire Fens.  

I really enjoy reading novels set in places that I know and love, and as I live in Lincolnshire I was looking forward to reading this.  It's a quick and easy but exciting read and here are my thoughts:

A Watery Grave is the second in a series featuring John Cannon, an ex-Met officer who is now the landlord of a Lincolnshire Fenland pub.  Although I've not read the first in the series; 'Both Sides of the Fence', it was not difficult to get to know the main characters in the story.
John Cannon is out for an early morning run when he becomes entangled in some discarded fishling line, annoyed at the danger this poses to wildlife and other walkers he decides to gather it up and dispose of it.  It soon becomes clear that this line has been used for something far more sinister than a spot of trout poaching.  

John discovers the body of a dead man, murdered by garotting and left to the elements.   John recognises the body as a local builder and once a policeman, always a policeman - he soon becomes involved in the hunt for the murderer.   

It becomes clear that this is no ordinary killing, the victim has become mixed up in the dodgy world of the local Mr Big - a Portuguese man who controls an empire including illegal immigrants, prostitution and extortion.   

Although this is an exciting plotline with lots of twists in the story, it was the description of the Lincolnshire Fenlands that I enjoyed the most.  

The stark, flat and wild fens on the coastline were drawn so well, I could almost feel that biting wind as it blows in from the sea, the descriptions are wonderfully written.  

An interesting mix of characters and a leading man with an air of recklessness and mystery about him, this was a story that I enjoyed reading and look forward todiscovering more about John Cannon in future books in the series.

1 comment:

  1. I love Corfu, we stayed in Nissaki this time three years ago. Perfect weather, good food, bliss!