Review Blog

Nov 19 2020

Shadow Sands by Robert Bryndza

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Kate Marshall book 2 . Little Brown, 2020. ISBN: 9780751572759.
(Age: Adult - Senior secondary) Recommended. Kate Marshall and her offsider Tristan Harper are back in another exciting adventure. The duo first appeared in Nine Elms and continue with their successful sleuthing in Shadow Sands. When Kate and her son are diving in the Shadow Sands reservoir, Kate finds the body of a young man floating above the sunken village. The body has extensive injuries and even though he is identified as a swimmer capable of going to the Olympics, the authorities deem it to be an accident. When the victim's mother contacts Kate, she and Tristan gradually uncover the fact that people have been disappearing from this area for years. Then a young lecturer from the university disappears and the hunt is on.
Bryndza has the happy knack of writing in a very easy to read style, with engaging characters that are relatable. Kate is a recovering alcoholic, who only sees her teenage son Jake in holidays. Both must deal with the fact that Jake's father is a convicted serial killer. Meanwhile Tristan has some personal issues to deal with as well. Both Kate and Tristan come across as highly intelligent and capable, and the reader will enjoy all the clues that they pursue.
The setting of a reservoir as the dumping ground for bodies is unusual. Add a very thick fog that rolls in over the land and a desolate, empty old club which was the last place some of the victims were seen and readers can expect to hold their breath. A rich and powerful local aristocratic family raises issues about class and the wielding of power and influence.
The case is concluded with some surprise twists and turns, and heart-stopping moments and readers can expect to see Kate and Tristan in further investigations.
Pat Pledger

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