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The House at Sea's End: ' [ THE HOUSE AT SEA'S END: ' ] By Griffiths, Elly ( Author )Nov-20-2012 Paperback Paperback – 2012

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Product Details

  • Paperback
  • Publisher: Mariner Books (2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9780547844176
  • ISBN-13: 978-0547844176
  • ASIN: 0547844174
  • Product Dimensions: 13.5 x 2.3 x 20.3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 499 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
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By Alison S. Coad TOP 50 REVIEWER on May 8 2014
Format: Paperback
Six skeletons are discovered buried on a remote beach at the beginning of <b><u><i>The House at Sea's End</i></u></b>, the third novel in Elly Griffiths' series about forensic archeologist Ruth Galloway and Detective Chief Inspector Harry Nelson. The skeletons seem to be about 70 years old, suggesting that they might have been buried during World War II, at a site where during that conflict there were constant rumours about a pending German invasion. Could the bodies be connected to the war? And if so, who might be still alive to explain them? As several elderly men who might have the answers die, ostensibly of old age, it is up to Ruth and Nelson to ferret out the truth before it is buried forever.... I'm not particularly fond of stories related to the Second World War - war-time tales just don't interest me - but the historical context for this story is important, and Griffiths handles the material well. More time is spent on the relationships of the principal characters, and we get a fuller understanding of one of Ruth's earlier jobs which had been hinted at in the previous books: her work as an archeologist in Bosnia after the civil war in the 1990s, uncovering mass graves along with an international team. I found myself more interested in that story than in the mystery of the skeletons, but overall I enjoyed both. Not quite as much fun as the previous novel in the series, but still well worth reading; recommended.
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By Nicola Mansfield HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWER on Aug. 4 2012
Format: Paperback
Reason for Reading: Next in the series.

I enjoy this series but have to say this third book was not up to par with the first two books. The book's focus was on a case from the past which wasn't entirely all that exciting. The police investigation leads to witnesses and people involved turning up dead and the police believe they have a killer on their hands who doesn't want the truth of the past to become known. This case is a little more interesting but the two are inseparably intertwined.

While the murder investigations are going on "Sea's End" mainly seems to concern itself with the private lives of the two main characters Ruth and Harry, plus those of some minor characters within the police department as well. I enjoy mystery series that contain a continuous story throughout with the main characters but this time the personal relationships overshadowed the mystery theme and I didn't really come upon any surprise twists. One thing I did appreciate was the further development of Cathbad's character who has been proven to much more human in this entry, rather than the eccentric buffoon he's been up to this point.

Another point I was puzzled with was the over emphasis on Catholicism. Almost every character either was or had something to say about being a lapsed Catholic, anti-Catholic, or just shamed of their Catholicism. Of course, Harry's struggle with his Catholic upbringing and faith has been discussed in the series before. But this was so prevalent, with so many characters, I actually thought it was going to be a plot point in the solution of the case, but ended up realizing it was just the author's personal bias showing through. A decent enough mystery, it held my attention and I read it quickly but not as good as the first two Galloway mysteries. Hopefully the latest one gets back on track.
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By JS on July 17 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Smart characters in tough situations, lovely writing, great story. Elly Griffiths is superb. Her books are set in a part of England that isn't covered a lot in other detective stories. Her main character is now grappling with motherhood and the treatment is great - it's not all rainbows and delight, but the fierce love and protectiveness surprise our otherwise rational/intellectual heroine. There's a good balance between the characters' personal lives as they develop over the course of the books (try to read them in order), and the specific mystery story at the heart of each book.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A compelling mystery. A little hard to get used to the use of the present tense, but it grows on the reader. The main character and her challenges as a new mother are believable. Great creation of setting in a dangerous coastal environment.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Luanne Ollivier #1 HALL OF FAMETOP 10 REVIEWER on Jan. 13 2012
Format: Paperback
I was captured by Elly Griffiths' Ruth Galloway series from the first book, The Crossing Places and the second - The Janus Stone.

So I settled in to read the third - The House at Sea's End - knowing before turning a page that I would enjoy it.

Forensic archaeologist Ruth Galloway is ready to return to work from maternity leave. When a local research team discovers a skeleton during an erosion study in Norfolk, Ruth is called in. When they delve further into the little cave where the body seems to have been hidden, five more skeletons are discovered - all with their hands tied behind their backs. Detective Chief Inspector Harry Nelson is then called in. Further investigation reveals a wartime link that someone doesn't want uncovered.

I have so enjoyed the character of Ruth. I think it's because she isn't a 'cookie-cutter' protagonist. She is a new, single mother at forty, she is overweight, messy, and doesn't overly worry about what people think. But she is highly intelligent, empathetic and tolerant. Griffiths has not endowed her with super sleuth abilities, rather she comes off as an actual person - unabashedly and happily herself. Her only worry is if she'll be a good mom.

Griffiths' plots are also very intelligent. I was able to solve the clues leading to one piece of the puzzle ahead of the characters, but it didn't detract from my enjoyment of the book at all. I always enjoy the setting in the books - the Norfolk area, while seemingly bleak is beautiful in Ruth's eyes. I used the map in the frontispiece to place where the action was happening. While I enjoy the mystery in Griffiths' books, it is the characters I come back for.

The father of Ruth's baby is DCI Harry Nelson, married father of two.
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