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The Janus Stone: A Ruth Galloway…
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The Janus Stone: A Ruth Galloway Investigation: A Case for Investigator… (original 2009; edition 2010)

by Elly Griffiths

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5425618,513 (3.72)101
Member:devenish
Title:The Janus Stone: A Ruth Galloway Investigation: A Case for Investigator Ruth Galloway, Forensic Archaeologist
Authors:Elly Griffiths
Info:Quercus (2010), Paperback, 329 Pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:****
Tags:Crime & Mystery Fiction, British Crime Fiction, Review

Work details

The Janus Stone by Elly Griffiths (2009)

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    Raven Black by Ann Cleeves (Menagerie)
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Showing 1-5 of 52 (next | show all)
In this follow-up to Griffiths' debut, The Crossing Places, Dr. Ruth Galloway, head of forensic archaeology at the University of North Norfolk, is called to consult when an archaeology team uncovers the bones of a small child, minus the skull, buried underneath the main doorway of a derelict Victorian mansion in Norwich. But as Galloway begins to investigate, along with her police counterpart, detective Harry Nelson, she discovers the old estate had been an orphanage where two children had gone missing in the 1970s, so it's possible the skeleton belongs to one of them. And yet, before the orphanage, the estate belonged to a wealthy Norwich family, who as it happens continue to run a real-estate development firm planning new luxury housing on the very spot.

The mystery in The Janus Stone is well-written and interesting. The skeleton is real mystery, and as the characters investigate the history of the house they discover it was formerly a children’s home. Then the plot really picks up. Griffiths takes the reader on twists and turns as they struggle to uncover who the murderer is. Ruth Galloway has a lot of personal development in this story, which is quite interesting. Her situation really changes and she rises to the occasion.

Ruth Galloway is a remarkable, delightful character: brilliant, wry, determined and independent, almost to a fault — yet also a little nervous and awkward. The Janus Stone is a must read for fans of crime and mystery fiction, and I can't wait to read the next in the series. ( )
  Olivermagnus | Jan 17, 2016 |
Note: Spoilers for Book One of this series, The Crossing Places

The second book in the Ruth Galloway Mystery Series begins three months after the end of the first book, The Crossing Places. In the first book, we met Ruth Galloway, an almost 40-year old overweight forensic archeologist at the (fictional) University of North Norfolk, and Detective Chief Inspector Harry Nelson of the Norfolk Police. The two teamed up to solve a crime when old bones were found in the saltmarsh near Ruth’s home, with Harry hoping they would provide clues to some cases of missing children.

In the first book, Ruth and Harry spent a night together after emotional developments in that case, and now Ruth is three months pregnant. She has not told Harry, and doesn’t know if she should, since he has a happy home life with his wife Michelle and daughters, Rebecca and Laura.

But Ruth and Harry are thrown together again when another skeleton of a child of undetermined age is found. These bones, which appear to have been part of a ritual, were uncovered during an excavation of an old Victorian house that had became a Catholic children’s home and now is being rehabbed into luxury apartments.

Ruth is also involved with an archeological dig at a nearby hill where her colleagues are exploring the prehistoric remains of a site that includes a Roman villa as well as earlier Bronze Age and Iron Age settlements. An archeological expert on Roman Britain, Dr. Max Grey from the University of Sussex, is also at the site, and takes a personal interest in Ruth.

Once again, it is Ruth who comes up with the most significant breakthroughs in the crime case, and as the different plot lines come together, once again her life is in danger. This is not to say there is any predictability in this book; the suspense at the end is riveting.

Evaluation: This is a very good series. The characters are complex and likable, and you learn quite a bit about ancient Celtic mythology and archeology. ( )
  nbmars | Dec 23, 2015 |
What a great sequal. This time Dr. Ruth Galloway is confronted by the Roman age. In a house which gets dismantled, bones of a little girl are found under the door sill. Soon it's clear that these bones aren't from the Roman period but the ritual shows strong similarities to Roman rites. In the course of investigations Ruth is a victim of several attacks. These are not her only problems. She hasn't told the child father about her pregnancy and when he learns about it. He does everything to protect Ruth and the unborne child.
The story is very gripping and let me a long time guessing who the evil one is. ( )
  Ameise1 | Aug 23, 2015 |
The second in Ruth Galloway series. A child’s headless skeleton is unearthed at the latest archeological dig in Norfolk England. Ruth, in her capacity as forensic archeologist is called and determines that the skeleton has a more recent origin. Enter Detective Chief Inspector Harry Nelson of the local constabulary to help with the investigation. Harry also happens to be the (married) father of Ruth’s unborn baby. Professional and personal lives collide as they work to discover the identity and story of the skeleton.

I enjoy these books because they are the perfect mix of a good mystery and the characters personal lives. Intrigued by Ms. Galloway’s first book, The Crossing Places, I picked up this one and am now waiting for The House at Sea’s End. I feel like a bit of a voyeur as I really want to see where the relationship between Harry and Ruth goes. I am anticipating fire works, and not in a good way.
( )
  ChristineEllei | Jul 14, 2015 |
I am glad to have found this series. The books are very good. In this one Ruth finds the skeleton of a young girl under the foundation of a building that is being destroyed. She knows that the bones are old but not too old, maybe the 1950's. The grave is fairly recent. She makes a new friend in this book, Max Grey. He too is an archaeologist, but not who he says he is. But who killed this young girl? Someone is after Ruth, leaving models of babies, stuffed cows with two heads. But who is it? Is it Max? It all unravels, and the truth comes out. ( )
  bwhitner | Nov 8, 2014 |
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For my nieces and nephews:
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Book description
Forensics expert Ruth Galloway is called in to investigate when builders, demolishing a large old house in Norwich, uncover the skeleton of a child — minus the skull — beneath a doorway. Is it some ritual sacrifice or just plain straightforward murder?

The house was once a children's home. DCI Harry Nelson meets the Catholic priest who used to run it. He tells him that two children did go missing forty years before a boy and a girl. They were never found.

When carbon dating proves that the child's bones predate the children's home, Ruth is drawn more deeply into the case. But as spring turns to summer it becomes clear that someone is trying very hard to put her off the scent by frightening her half to death...
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Ruth Galloway is called in to investigate when builders, demolishing a large old house in Norwich to make way for a housing development, uncover the bones of a child beneath a doorway -- minus the skull. Is it some ritual sacrifice or just plain straightforward murder? DCI Harry Nelson would like to find out -- and fast. It turns out the house was once a children's home. Nelson traces the Catholic priest who used to run the home. Father Hennessey tells him that two children did go missing from the home forty years before -- a boy and a girl. They were never found. When carbon dating proves that the child's bones predate the home and relate to a time when the house was privately owned, Ruth is drawn ever more deeply into the case. But as spring turns into summer it becomes clear that someone is trying very hard to put her off the scent by frightening her half to death...… (more)

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