Saturday, May 14, 2016

The Woman in Blue - Elly Griffiths

I love the Ruth Galloway series, so I was eagerly watching my name for The Woman in Blue get closer to the top of the library waiting list.  I picked it up on Thursday, read the first twenty pages before I went to bed, and finished it on Friday.

Cathbad is house sitting in Walsingham for a friend.  Outside, in the graveyard, at night, at a distance,  he sees a beautiful young woman wearing a white gown and a blue robe.  He calls to her to see if she needs help, but she only smiles sadly and shakes her head.  The next morning, she's found strangled.

She was a famous model with substance abuse problems.  She was staying at a clinic about a mile away.  DCI Nelson and his team must find the killer.  But the killer's not finished.  Nelson's wife, Michelle, who looks very much like the model, is attacked and almost strangled.  Then a woman priest, who also looks like the model, attending a conference for women priests in the town, is strangled.  Who?  And why?

There are many suspects, but few motives.

Ruth and Nelson and their complicated relationship come into play.  Nelson finds out something about his wife that enrages him.  He gladly says goodbye to a team member.

The mystery comes to an exciting end during the Passion Play put on by the town.

There's not a lot of archeology in this book, and archeology is one of the reasons I like this series.  This book is more centered around religion:  Passion Plays, women priests, Catholicism, Anglicanism, the cult of the Madonna Lactans.  But the characters are strong enough to keep my interest.  And there's a puppy!

I just realized I wrote this assuming that you've read the other books in the series.  This is one series I think you should definitely read in order.  Too many things happen to the characters as the books progress that affect how the characters act in later books.  If you haven't read the previous books, I don't think you'll understand some things in the later books.


  1. I love this series &, even though I also love the archaeology, the religious history & the discussion about women priests, kept me reading this one. Like you, I read it in a couple of days. Definitely a series to read in order!

    1. I like the historical aspects, but the religious stuff is only mildly interesting to me. I think Ruth's, Nelson's, and Michelle's relationship is fascinating.

  2. I'm glad to see that my library has these books, I'll just have to make sure I get them out in order.

    1. I like the series. I like the characters, the location, and the archeology that plays a part in most of the books. But I think they definitely should be read in order. Happy reading!