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Hunting Shadows (Inspector Ian Rutledge #16)

3.99  ·  Rating Details  ·  2,325 Ratings  ·  372 Reviews
A dangerous case with ties leading back to the battlefields of World War I dredges up dark memories for Scotland Yard Inspector Ian Rutledge in Hunting Shadows, a gripping and atmospheric historical mystery set in 1920s England, from acclaimed New York Times bestselling author Charles Todd.

A society wedding at Ely Cathedral in Cambridgeshire becomes a crime scene when a ma
Hardcover, 330 pages
Published January 21st 2014 by William Morrow
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Khanh (the Grinch)
Dec 01, 2014 Khanh (the Grinch) rated it it was amazing
I may be a little biased, but I just gotta tell you, Detective Ian Rutledge is THE BEST DETECTIVE OF ALL TIME. In my heart, that is.

There aren't enough words for how much I love this (literally and figuratively) haunted, emotionally scarred war veteran. He's got class. He's got common sense. He's got a tremendous amount of empathy as well as the ability to take a step back and observe the situation.

I could go on, write a subjective review, but there's really no point. I simply have no complaints
Feb 17, 2015 Melinda rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2015
An extremely well drawn mystery with an exceptional main protagonist Inspector Ian Rutledge.

Rutledge is commanding. Dealing with issues stemming from war, he carries himself with poise. A professional with intelligence, methodical and pragmatic. His human side isn’t ignored in the line of duty as he exercises compassion along with never failing to lose sight of his observations, his keen eye engaged.

The mystery factor is full of clever twists and turns, unfolding slowly in a rather smart manner
Mar 21, 2014 Larraine rated it it was amazing
The latest in the Ian Rutledge series doesn't disappoint. It's 1920 and there's a funeral for a soldier who has spent the last two years in the hospital dying from gangrene. One of the people there stands in the shadows and is angry when he sees an army captain among the mourners. He's angry because he doesn't see any reason for him to be there other than to further his own ambitions. Shortly thereafter, the same captain, Hutchinson, is a guest at a society wedding. Everyone is shocked when he i ...more
Susan Johnson
Dec 09, 2013 Susan Johnson rated it it was amazing
This is the first Ian Rutledge mystery that I have read but it certainly won't be the last. It is hard to write an authentic historical book but Todd has accomplished it. It has the feel for the times right after WWI. He captures the incredible loss of the population in a very concise, moving manner. First there are the men who come back, changed with horrific memories. He paints the stories of women who will never marry or have families because so many of the male population had been killed. I ...more
Feb 22, 2014 Linda rated it it was ok
This is a murder mystery that just goes on and on. Inspector Rutledge of Scotland Yard is called in to help the locals solve two murders. We are painstakingly taken through interview after interview as he seeks to put the puzzle pieces together. Men who have returned from war are still haunted by their experiences and Inspector Rutledge is no exception. Helping him in his endeavor to solve the crime, he carries the voice of a fallen comrade. The ghost of Hamish puts in his two cents now and then ...more
First Sentence: He’d tried to put the war behind him.

A sniper killer at Ely Cathedral takes Inspector Ian Rutledge to Cambridgeshire. A separate shooting in a different village does have a witness, but her testimony makes no real sense. The biggest barrier to Rutledge’s investigation is the apparent lack of motive in either case and lack of connection between the two victims. With the third shooting, and a target who survives, Rutledge starts looking to the past for both the motive, and for the
Anne Slater
Feb 15, 2014 Anne Slater rated it it was amazing
The last Charles Todd book I reviewed I gave short shrift to-- because it is impossible to treat a Todd novel without going into excruciating detail.

This one-- the same, but I've got to say, this one grabbed me by the gut and swung me around. I HAD to stay up.

Yesterday I got a Valentine from The Rare Book School (for real-- a degree-granting graduate program) the text was "A book that doesn't keep you up at night is not worth going to bed with.

I stayed up until 1:15 am when I decided I had to do
Kathy Davie
Jan 12, 2015 Kathy Davie rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mystery, history
Sixteenth in the Inspector Ian Rutledge historical mystery series and revolving around a WWI veteran suffering from PTSD as he solves crimes for Scotland Yard. The date is August 1920.

My Take
I find I much prefer the contemporary method of choosing a husband, and not worrying too much about what people think. Oh, we do still worry about that, but not as obsessively as the people of the 1920s and earlier did. When you look at how much went wrong. The loves lost, the lives lost. I cried.

So much tha
Luanne Ollivier
Feb 11, 2015 Luanne Ollivier rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
4.5/5 I absolutely love Charles Todd's Bess Crawford series, but funnily enough I've only read one or two of the Inspector Ian Rutledge mysteries. And I'm not sure why, as I really enjoyed Hunting Shadows, the 16th entry in this series.

Inspector Ian Rutledge of Scotland Yard is called in by the local constabulary when they are stymied by not one, but two murders - both perpetrated by a sniper. The two victims are completely disparate and it's up to Rutledge to find the common denominator - and t
Feb 17, 2014 judy rated it it was ok
Shelves: mystery-thriller
Contrary to many reviewers here, the more I read of this book, the more stars I took away. It had a terrific start but it didn't take long for the cast of characters to keep growing and growing. I found keeping the names and towns straight annoying since only the prime suspect was developed enough for me to be interested in him. I finished the book because, nearing the end, there were switchbacks on almost every other page. I was determined to carry on even though my own version of Hamish kept w ...more
Elizabeth of Silver's Reviews
Jan 30, 2014 Elizabeth of Silver's Reviews rated it really liked it
Hamish and Rutledge are back again solving two seemingly unrelated murders in two different small towns.

Ian Rutledge is working on finding a "shadowy" figure who shoots to kill and then disappears without a trace. Rutledge has a difficult time finding clues and connections that would lead to the murderer's identification.

The first shooting was at a wedding and the second at a political rally. No one seems to be able to understand how the two are related nor the reason for the murders.

May 25, 2014 Judy rated it really liked it
It's August 1920 and a guest is shot by a sniper as he walks into Ely Cathedral in Cambridgshire for a wedding. Shortly thereafter a Tory candidate for Parliament is shot, also by a sniper, while giving a campaign speech in a small town. Because of a lack of progress in solving the murders, Scotland Yard is called in and Inspector Ian Rutledge is sent to investigate. I confess that I love this series and purchased this book on the day that it was released. And this book does not disappoint. The ...more
Feb 08, 2014 Marlene rated it it was amazing
Originally published at Reading Reality

Hunting Shadows is a fascinating mystery that combines a search for “whodunnit” along with a surprisingly twisty trail leading to “why did they do it”. The struggle in this story is to make sense out of two crimes that seemingly don’t, until they suddenly, and chillingly, do.

This story starts out as a seemingly traditional mystery; we see the crime, but don’t know who the perpetrator is. It looks like the mystery will be the hunt for the killer. But it’s no
Gail Cooke
Jan 24, 2014 Gail Cooke rated it it was amazing
If you’ve not already been introduced to the Inspector Ian Rutledge mysteries the 16th entry in this exceptional series, Hunting Shadows, is a good place to start. Written by a mother/son writing team using the pen name Charles Todd these books are widely recognized as one of the best historical series being written today and for this reader the latest considerably raises the bar.

A little background for those who have not yet had the pleasure: Todd has created a sympathetic, compelling protagoni
Feb 16, 2014 Larry rated it really liked it
Inspector Ian Rutledge hunts a double murderer in the fen country south of Ely. The two murders seem to have nothing in common beyond having been the work of a sniper, so Rutledge is forced to cross and recross the paths of almost everyone in Ely and the several villagers and small towns that ring the second murder site. Hamish (the voice of his guilt over having executed a good but worn-out soldier) is with him, but not so much as in the past. Maybe Rutledge is healing from his war duty, but th ...more
Feb 07, 2014 Lisa rated it really liked it
Another in the terrific Ian Rutledge detective series, this entry is well-plotted in the sense that Todd keeps the reader and Rutledge in the shadows about whodunit for a good long time, slowly teasing out the aspects of the mystery and skillfully creating red herrings. An enjoyable read, but I missed Todd's usual inclusion of lighter aspects in the story--more about Rutledge's sister, perhaps? Anyway, the emotional tone of the book seems too even--we are constantly lost in the fog of the murder ...more
"Hunting Shadows" is a police procedural that takes place outside of London in the years just after WWWI. Some of the action is related to the battlefields.

Two men are gunned down by rifle fire and Inspector Ian Rutledge of Scotland Yard is sent to investigate. There are many characters in this complex novel but Rutledge doesn't find anything to tie the two murders together.

Through the story, Rutledge hears the spirit voice of Hamish who gives advice and suggestions. Hamish was one of Rutledge'
May 19, 2016 Bonnie added it
The setting is Fen Country, Cambridgeshire, 1920. The fens were dangerous for the unwary as narrow flat field stretched for miles covered with irrigation ditches and a false step could mean falling in and drowning. The speaker is waiting for a man named Hutchinson in order to kill him. Hutchinson was getting married in Ely at the cathedral. Villagers lined the road waiting for the wedding. An old man slipped inside the tower door and waited. When the wedding party arrived, he took out the German ...more
Linda Munro
Feb 09, 2016 Linda Munro rated it it was amazing
After nearly two years, I have finally managed to read this book. I kept pushing the idea aside because it is British; even though I realize not all British books are alike, I have a difficult time with many of them.

Set in 1920’s England, this is a Scotland Yard Inspector Ian Rutledge novel; yes, I have located another historical mystery and I am truly beginning to love the genre. This tale leads Inspector Rutledge and many of his suspects back into the grips of WWI, a time they cannot shake th
Jun 26, 2016 Becky rated it it was amazing
The Ian Rutledge series is always satisfying. Because of the era (post WWI) the crimes are all solved without the benefit of technology. In fact, only in the last 2-3 of now 17 or 18 books has a car or a telephone been introduced. Thus conversation, contemplation, and connecting the dots are the mainstays of Scotland Yard's Detective Rutledge.

This detective is exceptionally complex, solving his crimes while navigating his own particular form of PTSD after actions he took during WWI. It would be
Barbara Mitchell
Feb 05, 2014 Barbara Mitchell rated it it was amazing
Charles Todd interests me because "he" is actually a mother and son writing team. That fact just blows me away. They live in different states, yet manage to collaborate on excellent books. This is the latest in their Inspector Ian Rutledge series.

Set in England just after World War I many of the characters are suffering from physical and mental problems due to their service in that horrible war. Rutledge is too. He is accompanied everywhere he goes by the voice of a Scottish soldier named Hamish
Lisa Johnson
Jan 20, 2014 Lisa Johnson rated it it was amazing
Title: Hunting Shadows (An Inspector Ian Rutledge Mystery)
Author: Charles Todd
Pages: 330
Year: 2014
Publisher: William Morrow
This is a great British mystery! I haven’t read any of this author’s Inspector Rutledge mysteries before, but I’m sure going to be reading them now! This book in the series is set shortly after World War I has ended in 1920. This story takes place mostly in the Fens, an area of Great Britain sparsely populated at that time and consisting of waterways, drainage ditches and wi
Jan 19, 2014 Gail rated it really liked it
Shelves: charles-todd
I was privileged to receive an Advanced Reading Copy of this book through a Goodreads giveaway. Inspector Ian Rutledge is one of my very favorite characters, and I have read most of the previous books featuring him. This book was fantastic. I would rate it 4.5 stars, were that possible. It was really interesting to learn more about the fens, and to feel the closeness of the mists and fogs, especially as the book opens. Very atmospheric, and part of the story, with such fascinating characters thr ...more
Dec 15, 2013 Betty rated it it was amazing
In the flat, low-lying, marshy Fen region of Cambridgeshire, two men are murdered; one at Ely Cathedral, the other in the small village of Wriston. Unable to come up with any conclusions, the local police turn the case over the Scotland Yard. Enter our old friend, Inspector Ian Rutledge still battling his traumatic memories from the front lines of WWI, which often manifest themselves in conversations with the phantom-like psychological voice of Hamish--his dead comrade killed in the war.

Kathleen (Kat) Smith
He wasn't supposed to have brought either the weapon or the ammunition back. But he had, because the rifle has become a part of him. And no one searched his kit. Thank God he had.

The man deserved to die. But not this way. Not sacrificing himself. There had to be a better way. Look at it from a different perspective. God had brought this man to him once. He would do it again. All he had to do was wait. However long it took. His patience would pay off. He was ready. And Hutchinson would come to h
Apr 16, 2014 Deb rated it really liked it
Inspector Rutledge is sent to the Fens country to investigate two murders. Two apparently unconnected men are gunned down, the first as he arrives at a wedding, and the other while giving a political speech. His investigation unravels a complicated web emanating from events from before the war. The mystery and mood of the novel is enhanced by the description of the Fens environment. I liked this installment in the series; office politics were kept to a minimum and while Hamish is ever-present, R ...more
Sep 09, 2014 Sara rated it really liked it
The mystery at the heart of the Hunting Shadows unfolds slowly and gradually, as the result of patient, detail-oriented police work. This is the 16th title in Charles Todd's Inspector Ian Rutledge series, featuring the WWI veteran Scotland Yard detective.

This mystery takes place in England's fen country, low-lying, foggy marshes dotted with quiet villages. When two men are shot at public gatherings a few days apart, Rutledge is called in to find a connection and catch the mysterious shooter.

Apr 21, 2015 Judy rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery, wwi-related
I am glad to see that "Charles Todd" is back to his usual excellent form (after his previous Proof of Guilt), with this tightly woven book - interesting and varied characters, a mystery that was complex and hard to solve (not that I ever do) but perfectly logical, and Hamish back in place throughout. He vividly conjures up the atmospheric Fen country. My ongoing complaint: Rutledge needs a life! He is so solitary - we rarely see friends, never mind a romantic interest of any kind. Still, I love ...more
Mar 29, 2014 LBinKC rated it really liked it

I have read all of the Inspector Rutledge books and look forward to the next in the series. Part of the appeal are the descriptions of everyday living conditions barely 100 years ago that are so different from today - motorcars were still a new mode of transportation; there were few telephones available; etc.

I was a little disappointed in how the ending was handled. It seemed that the murderer had been found, only to have another person revealed as the actual culprit, a man as skilled in hiding
Nov 08, 2015 Nancy rated it really liked it
Another good read from these authors. A few twists and turns; good plot.

A society wedding at Ely Cathedral in Cambridgeshire becomes a crime scene when a man is murdered. After another body is found, the baffled local constabulary turns to Scotland Yard. Though the second crime had a witness, her description of the killer is so strange its unbelievable.

Despite his experience, Inspector Ian Rutledge has few answers of his own. The victims are so different that there is no rhyme or reason to their
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Charles Todd is the pen name used by a mother-and-son writing team, Caroline Todd and Charles Todd.
More about Charles Todd...

Other Books in the Series

Inspector Ian Rutledge (1 - 10 of 19 books)
  • A Test of Wills (Inspector Ian Rutledge, #1)
  • Wings of Fire (Inspector Ian Rutledge, #2)
  • Search the Dark (Inspector Ian Rutledge, #3)
  • Legacy of the Dead (Inspector Ian Rutledge, #4)
  • Watchers of Time (Inspector Ian Rutledge, #5)
  • A Fearsome Doubt (Inspector Ian Rutledge, #6)
  • A Cold Treachery (Inspector Ian Rutledge, #7)
  • A Long Shadow (Inspector Ian Rutledge, #8)
  • A False Mirror (Inspector Ian Rutledge, #9)
  • A Pale Horse (Inspector Ian Rutledge, #10)

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“I was always a killer. It was my skill, and they’d taught me well. She taught me love.” 1 likes
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