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The Woman in Blue by Elly Griffiths
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The Woman in Blue

by Elly Griffiths

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Ruth Galloway (8)

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2812557,540 (3.71)1 / 70

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Showing 1-5 of 26 (next | show all)
Well, I've been reading these at the pace of eating popcorn, and that may be why I didn't like this one as much as the others. I suspect Griffiths had to end some threads of romantic tension that were getting a little histrionic, but the central mystery is filled with coincidences and conveniently hidden relationships among the quick and the dead. And the characters are a bit more cardboard than I have come to expect from her. Oh well. I hope the next one's better. ( )
  ffortsa | Jul 19, 2018 |
A favorite series, just hits the spot. ( )
  kmajort | Feb 9, 2018 |
A woman is found dead in a ditch in Walsingham. It seems that she is a model and she has been treated for addiction in a close by hospital. Nelson is investigation the case and soon his path will cross with Ruth again who is in Walsingham meeting an old friend that she studied with and then changed her career and become a priest. She has gotten threats and wants Ruth's help since she works closely with the police. Then, another woman gets killed and this time, it's a female priest.

There were some things that irked me with this book, not so much the case itself with the dead women as the preconceived attitude towards female priests and religion that pervades this book. Especially Ruth Galloway is extremely anti-religion and it was for me very frustrating to read because the attitude bothered me. This is not something new, she has been wary about religion since she was young and this is something that has been addressed previously in the books. But since this book is about threats against female priests and also a murder that seems to be connected to the treats are the preconceived attitude that Ruth is displaying quite frustrating for me to read who is so used to the ecclesial world (or, at least, was). Ruth's attitude towards her old friend Hilary that changed her career and decided to become a priest felt a bit condescending.

This is something that probably will not bother everyone that reads the book. But I do prefer Cathbad's more open attitude towards religion than Ruth and Nelson's quite closed attitude. I can be quite tired about Ruth whining about Nelson called their daughter Katie instead of Kate. Come on Ruth. Don't be so sensitive it's just a nickname. At least, she wasn't whining that much about her weight in this book.

Alright, I needed to get that off my chest. Let's return to the case itself. I was really looking forward to this book since this is one of my favorite series (yes, despite that I find Ruth a bit too whiny sometimes) and this case sounded interesting. And, in a way it was, I mean there were several possible candidates for whom could be the killers. The police, of course, found themselves a possible suspect early one, but I was quite sure that was a red herring. But, the book was never really thrilling, it was an OK read. However, still I felt that something was lacking, could be that my annoyance with Ruth and Nelson that took away some excitement with reading this book or that the story just not to my liking. Probably a mix of it.

But, still I'm going to look forward to reading the next book in this series. I love the mix of crime and archeology. And, now when I think about is it probably what made this book less interesting to read. Too little archeology involved in the story.

I want to thank the publisher and NetGalley for providing me with a free copy for an honest review! ( )
  MaraBlaise | Dec 14, 2017 |
It is mid-February 2014 as The Woman in Blue: A Ruth Galloway Mystery begins. Cathbad is again house/pet sitting and again things are not going well. The pet in question this time is a black cat by the name of Chesterton. The owner, Justin, made it abundantly clear Chesterton is not to be let out at night. Despite Cathbad’s best efforts, the cat escapes and goes off into the darkness.

The home is a 15th century cottage next to a church and burial grounds. None of that bothers Cathbad as he is a Druid. What bothers him is the feeling he has had ever since he came to St. Simeon’s Cottage, Walsingham of a heavy sense of sadness about everything. He feels it now and with the cat missing that does not help matters.

Cathbad heads out in pursuit of the cat and soon sees a vague shape by one of the tombstones. A woman in white robes and a blue cloak who seems to almost glow in a divine way. She shakes her head at him regards to his offer of help and leaves quickly. In just a few hours, that same woman will be found dead nearby.

DCI Harry Nelson, head of the Serious Crimes Unit, will lead the investigation into the woman’s death. It wasn’t the cold that killed her though she was dressed only in a nightdress, a dressing gown, and slippers. She was strangled, according to police pathologist Christ Stephenson, who has also concluded she has been in the ditch eight to ten hours. It is very possible she is a patient at the nearby “Sanctuary” which is a private hospital that treats well off addicts.

It does not take long to confirm that the dead person was a patient and her name is Chloe Jenkins. She is the first of several deaths that will happen in the area.

A separate storyline is in regards to a series of hate filled letters that have been sent to Ruth’s friend, Hillary. She is an Anglican priest and some people do not want women as priests. The letters are clearly a threat. Are the murderer and the letter writer one and the same? As the murder continues and other events happen, everything seems to be pointing towards Easter Sunday in The Woman In Blue: A Ruth Galloway Mystery.

The eighth book in the series continues to build on character evolution, story arcs, and other elements. The ongoing private lives of all the characters make up a critical part of this very good series. Unlike previous books in the series where archeology was a key element in the read, here it barely makes a passing reference. Region and the role of women in the church is the primary focus and is weaved through the cases as well as the ongoing personal situations that are the backbone of the series. The Woman in Blue: a Ruth Galloway Mystery is another good read in a very good series that must be read in order starting with The Crossing Places.

The Woman in Blue: a Ruth Galloway Mystery
Elly Griffiths
http://www.ellygriffiths.co.uk/
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
http://www.hmhbooks.com
May 2016
ISBN# 978-0-544-41785-4
Hardback (also available in paperback and eBook formats)
368 Pages
$25.00

Material obtained via the Dallas Public Library System to read and review.

Kevin R. Tipple ©2017 ( )
  kevinrtipple | Nov 13, 2017 |
Showing 1-5 of 26 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (4 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Elly Griffithsprimary authorall editionscalculated
Björklund, Ing-BrittTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Clark, JoeCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Dazeley, PeterCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kennedy, MarthaCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
McDowell, JaneNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
Weep, weep, O Walsingham,

Whose dayes are nights,

Blessings turned to blasphemies,

Holy deeds to despites.

Sinne is where Our Ladye sate,

Heaven turned is to helle;

Satan sitthe where Our Lord did swaye,

Walsingham, O farewell!

--Ballad of Walsingham, anonymous

sixteenth century
Dedication
For Giulia
First words
19 February 2014
Cathbad and the cat look at each other.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0544417852, Hardcover)

In the next Ruth Galloway mystery, a vision of the Virgin Mary foreshadows a string of cold-blooded murders, revealing a dark current of religious fanaticism in an old medieval town.

Known as England’s Nazareth, the medieval town of Little Walsingham is famous for religious apparitions. So when Ruth Galloway’s druid friend Cathbad sees a woman in a white dress and a dark blue cloak standing alone in the local cemetery one night, he takes her as a vision of the Virgin Mary. But then a woman wrapped in blue cloth is found dead the next day, and Ruth’s old friend Hilary, an Anglican priest, receives a series of hateful, threatening letters. Could these crimes be connected? When one of Hilary’s fellow female priests is murdered just before Little Walsingham’s annual Good Friday Passion Play, Ruth, Cathbad, and DCI Harry Nelson must team up to find the killer before he strikes again.

(retrieved from Amazon Tue, 29 Sep 2015 06:09:19 -0400)

"In the next Ruth Galloway mystery, a vision of the Virgin Mary foreshadows a string of cold-blooded murders, revealing a dark current of religious fanaticism in an old medieval town. Known as England's Nazareth, the medieval town of Little Walsingham is famous for religious apparitions. So when Ruth Galloway's druid friend Cathbad sees a woman in a white dress and a dark blue cloak standing alone in the local cemetery one night, he takes her as a vision of the Virgin Mary. But then a woman wrapped in blue cloth is found dead the next day, and Ruth's old friend Hilary, an Anglican priest, receives a series of hateful, threatening letters. Could these crimes be connected? When one of Hilary's fellow female priests is murdered just before Little Walsingham's annual Good Friday Passion Play, Ruth, Cathbad, and DCI Harry Nelson must team up to find the killer before he strikes again"--… (more)

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