Monday, 7 July 2014

The Bone Seeker by MJ McGrath

review by Maryom

In an attempt to get away from the disturbing events of the past, Edie Kiglatuk has taken a job as a summer school teacher in Kuujuaq, another Inuit community on Ellesmere Island 70 kilometres further along the coast. She's hoping for peace and quiet but when one of her teenage pupils goes missing, Edie finds herself dragged into a murder investigation. The community are convinced that Martha's killer must have come from the nearby military base but Edie feels this is just too simple a solution, especially when the military step in and take control of the case, and persuades her friend police sergeant Derek Palliser to continue the investigation secretly. Also puzzled by events is lawyer Sonia Gutierrez, in Kuujuaq pursuing a case against the military relating to the clean-up and decontamination of a decommissioned early warning base. Could there be a link between activities at the old base and Martha's death?

The Bone Seeker is a thriller with an unusual backdrop - the Canadian High Arctic. It's set in the brief summertime when the sun never sets, temperatures 'soar' to 10 degrees and the tundra bursts into flower. Against this bleak but beautiful landscape long-buried secrets are being revealed. Edie's hunting instincts tell her that there's more to discover than the murderer's identity. The trail is as confusing and complex as any reader could wish for as it leads Edie off in one direction, sidetracks her in another, then doubles round into a third or fourth.

This is the first Edie Kiglatuk story I've read so there was a fair bit of back-plot to catch up on, which made the early chapters a little hard going, but once Edie was a the trail of the killer the pace picked up. I was just left at the end wondering if all the ends had been tied off neatly - maybe I missed something...

Maryom's review - 4 stars
Publisher -
Mantle (Panmacmillan)

Genre - adult,
murder mystery

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