Kirsty Darbyshire's Reviews > The Wood Beyond

The Wood Beyond by Reginald Hill
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Jun 16, 2011

really liked it
Read in March, 2003

I'm definitely running out of things to say about Reginald Hill because it seems I am destined to be never disappointed by his books. This is a very good thing and I'm not complaining. It's taken me several months to get hold of this book as it seemed to be in the middle of a reprint when I finished the previous book. It's also an episode of the series that I've only heard exceedingly good things about and so I was really looking forwrad to it.

It hasn't turned out to be my favourite read of the series though. I thought it went a bit too far into coincidences and unlikelihoods. A writer this good can get away with spinning a tale that eats its own tail like this but I definitely prefer some of the other, less lauded, stories.

In this story Chief Inspector Peter Pascoe discovers that his great grandfather who was killed in the first world war at Passchendaele wasn't killed in battle at all but executed by his countrymen. It makes for a great background and it is very interesting but the way Pascoe's historical investigations marry with the present day story has echoes of the kind of thing I have to ignore in Kate Ellis's books in order to enjoy them. Also having done quite a bit of genealogical research of my own lately the way that Pascoe finds out about his family history had me laughing my socks off (walks into local church, vicar happily skims through parish registers and gives him a potted version and sends him on to a distant aunt who tells all, yeah right, that's great detective work).

It's a good read all the same, but it's a long way from being my favourite of this series and I didn't find it the most well crafted story in the series either.
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