Select one of the keywords
Lake of Sorrows    by Erin Hart order for
Lake of Sorrows
by Erin Hart
Order:  USA  Can
Scribner, 2004 (2004)
Hardcover, Audio

Read an Excerpt

* * *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

Dublin archaeologist Cormac Maguire and anatomy lecturer Nora Gavin were introduced in Erin Hart's excellent Haunted Ground. The relationship that developed between them during that investigation is now at risk from unfinished business that Nora left back in the United States - her brother-in-law, whom she is convinced was her sister Triona's murderer, has new wedding plans, and Nora fears for the bride.

In the meantime, Nora and Cormac have planned to stay together at a cottage given to him by old friends, at Loughnabrone ('Lake of Sorrows') Bog in County Offaly. Nora is on assignment there to assist in the excavation of an Iron Age bog body, and Cormac plans to do some writing. But, as in the first in the series, modern murder soon plays a hand, embroiling them both. A newly discovered bog body is identified as that of Danny Brazil, a champion hurler believed to have emigrated to Australia twenty-five years ago. Before he disappeared, Danny and his brother Dominic were awarded a substantial reward for their discovery of a buried hoard. Locals believe that they found and hid more treasure.

An intriguing cast of characters includes Dominic's son Charlie (a suspect in animal mutilations when he was younger) and wife Teresa; a mute young woman named Brona who once witnessed her sister's suicide; a widower police detective who is attracted to the elegant state pathologist; a predatory vamp of an archeologist named Ursula and the married bog manager with whom she's breaking up; and a young student named Rachel with mysterious motives and odd night-time habits. It seems that the 'Lake of Sorrows' holds many secrets, in particular the meaning of the 'triple death' ritual killings practiced on both ancient and new victims.

Hart develops the story with clever misdirection and a plethora of suspects. Past abuse and misdeeds come back to haunt many in the present. Cormac becomes a prime suspect, and Nora's investigations on his behalf draw her into peril from a monster who believes that 'Death by sacrifice is a sacred privilege.' I enjoyed Lake of Sorrows very much and look forward to Erin Hart's next entry in this impressive series.

Note: Opinions expressed in reviews and articles on this site are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of BookLoons.

Find more Mystery books on our Shelves or in our book Reviews