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Tomb of the Serpent
By Guy Fraser

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Tomb of the Serpent

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Tomb of the Serpent
By Guy Fraser
Ulverscroft Large Print, 2012
ISBN: 978-1-4448-1135-3
Genre: Crime, Historical Fiction

Reviewed by Harry S. Chou - July 1, 2013

Superintendent Henry Jarrett is on the track of a serial killer. However, the killer does not fit the profile of a typical serial killer. The murders all seem to be random, the victims seem to have nothing in common, and each murder is carried out in a different manner. There appears to be not one single clue that Jarrett can use to discover who the killer is.

Tomb of the Serpent is a wonderful addition to Guy Fraser's historical crime novels that feature Superintendent Jarrett, of the Detective Department of Glasgow Central. This story is set in 1863, and many of the characters that have appeared in previous Jarrett novels, also make an appearance here - including Mrs. Elsie Maitland, Inspector Charlie Grant, the hard working Detective Sergeant Tommy Quinn. Elsie, the proprietress of a guest-house for single gentlemen, is also Jarrett's love interest.

In this installment of the series, Jarrett is not only struggling to stop the above-mentioned serial killer, but his personal life is also in turmoil. He's ready to settle down and marry Elsie, but just as he is ready to set the date - he is asked, or more technically, ordered to resign from the police force! What is a bloke to do?

Once again Fraser has crafted an outstanding historical mystery filled with period details of both the Victorian era, and Scotland itself. The story is well-paced, the mystery is intricate, and the main characters are all likable. Jarrett is an especially interesting charter, having come to the Glasgow constabulary via Hong Kong where he worked with the Hong Kong police. He has a knack for finding clues where no one else can see them, and he has a keen mind that enables him to make connections that eventually aid him in solving the crimes that come his way.

Tomb of the Serpent is a great all-around novel that will delight fans of both historic fiction and historical mysteries, as well as anyone who enjoys police procedurals.


Tomb of the Serpent can be purchased directly from Ulverscroft Large Print.


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