Haunted Ground
Erin Hart
book reviews:
· general fiction
· chick lit/romance
· sci-fi/fantasy
· graphic novels
· nonfiction
· audio books

Click here for the curledup.com RSS Feed

· author interviews
· children's books @
   curledupkids.com
· DVD reviews @
   curledupdvd.com

newsletter
win books
buy online
links

home

for authors
& publishers


for reviewers

click here to learn more




Buy *Haunted Ground* online

Haunted Ground
Erin Hart
Pocket Star
Paperback
512 pages
May 2003
rated 5 of 5 possible stars

buy this book now or browse millions of other great products at amazon.com

previous reviewnext review

An Irish farmer gets a shock when, while cutting peat for winter fuel, his spade turns up the perfectly preserved head of a young woman with long red hair. Archeologist Cormac Maguire is quickly called to the scene along with his American colleague, pathologist Nora Gavin, as "bog bodies" are something of a rarity. As peat bogs have the remarkable property of preventing decay, it means that Cormac and Nora have a grisly mystery on their hands to solve.

For a while, local policeman Devaney suspects that the head may belong to Mina, the missing wife of local gentry Hugh Osborne, but this is soon ruled out. Mina and her young son had disappeared one day in what is thought to have been the work of a local serial killer, but Devaney and most of the villagers suspect Hugh was somehow involved. When Nora learns about this present-day mystery, it arouses strong emotions in her -- she came to Ireland after losing a hard-fought battle to prove that her brother-in-law had murdered her sister.

Soon Cormac and Nora are deeply involved in solving both mysteries, and their investigations stir up other mysteries buried within this small Irish town. Meanwhile, in spite of being forbidden to do so by his superior, policeman Devaney quietly reopens the Osborne case. Their combined exploration is making someone very antsy, and soon they find themselves in great danger.

Erin Hartís Haunted Ground is an engaging and irresistible read, and it is hard to believe that this book is her debut effort. Hart sets the story in a tiny village in Ireland, and not only does she accurately capture the local atmosphere but also makes it suitably fey and gothic. So evocative are the descriptions that the readers can almost smell the peat, feel the soggy bogs and hear the lilting tunes floating in the air, as well feel chilled by the oppressive and menacing aura pervading the whole story. The characters are some of the most well-constructed Iíve ever read -- not just the main protagonists but almost every side character also takes a definite shape. Hart does this by describing what makes her characters tick: their pasts and their hobbies as well as their motivations. She does so simply and subtly but to great effect. A touch of romance softens the book up a bit. The mystery is also very good, and though the solution seems obvious, Hart takes some devious plot twists which keep the reader guessing. The authorís research is in-depth and enough scientific details are provided to lend authenticity to the whole story. Greatly enjoyable, Haunted Ground is a must-read for any mystery buff.



© 2003 by Rashmi Srinivas for Curled Up With a Good Book


Also by Erin Hart:

buy *Haunted Ground* online
click here for more info
Click here to learn more about this month's sponsor!


fiction · sf/f · comic books · nonfiction · audio
newsletter · free book contest · buy books online
review index · links · · authors & publishers
reviewers

site by ELBO Computing Resources, Inc.