BOOK REVIEW – A Divided Loyalty

by Charles Todd (Author), Simon Prebble (Narrator), HarperAudio (Publisher)

An Audiobook Review by Jackie Houchin

Here is another excellent Ian Rutledge mystery by Charles Todd. It is atmospheric and dark both in the times as well as mood. It is set just after World War II and Britain is still reeling from the effects of war. Rutledge himself is suffering from a combat syndrome and often hears the voice of a fallen comrad.

The investigation is complicated; one that even a superior officer can’t seem to solve. So Scotland Yard sends Detective Rutledge to look into it. (You get the feeling that they hope he fails too, so they can dismiss him.) As the grim details of the three murders unfold, the detective’s loyalty to the Law, the Yard, the truth, and to the victims, is tested. His “loyalties” are truly “divided”. And so are the readers’. The author seems to ask the reader what he or she would do in this situation. And you struggle along with Rutledge.

The best part of these mysteries is Rutledge’s tenacity when others give up and how he keeps on digging to find and put into place the last tiny detail that will close the case. In this book, however, even he is blind-sided. The last chapters are loaded with suspense and jaw-dropping discovery. Horrendous and shocking, but in the end, after thinking about the story for a while, totally satisfying, and perhaps even vindicating if you caught the early nuances.

As always, narrator Simon Prebble “IS” Ian Rutledge.  I recommend this 10th book in the series.  Top Notch

FIVE stars!

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