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An Unmarked Grave

A Bess Crawford Mystery

by Charles Todd

An Unmarked Grave by Charles Todd X
An Unmarked Grave by Charles Todd
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  • Published Jun 2012
    352 pages
    Genre: Mysteries

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There are currently 23 member reviews
for An Unmarked Grave
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  • Dorothy T. (Victorville, CA)
    Historical mystery set in WWI
    Historical mysteries is not a new genre, but this is the first I have read that is set in France and England during World War I. This is the fourth book in the Bess Crawford Mysteries, and the central character is strong and likeable enough to carry the series, although I am not sure she is really a woman of her time. Bess is quite independent and self reliant in a way that makes her more suitable to a later era. That said, this is a well-written mystery, certainly not one that I was able to figure out before the end, and I did like the setting--sleuthing was definitely more difficult during the days before computers and cell phones.
  • Kristen K. (Atlanta, Georgia)
    An Unmarked Grave by Charles Todd
    This is a mystery set in World War I. The main character is a English nurse who works in aid stations in France. I enjoyed the book because the heroine is intelligent, independent and interesting. Apparently this book is part of a series but stands well alone. The time period is very interesting since both England and France are in such upheaval politically and culturally. It is an easy read and I think anyone who enjoys a good mystery will enjoy the book. I plan to read other books in this series.
  • Dorothy M. (Owatonna, MN)
    Unmarked Grave
    For fans of the Charles Todd series, this is a must read. Bess Crawford is a military nurse who spends grueling hours in a WWI front line hospital. To make matters more difficult the Spanish influenza pandemic hits both patients and staff. One of the orderlies comes to Bess about a curious body he has found when he was preparing to dig graves for the dead patients. She recognizes immediately this is a case of murder and she knows who the soldier is. Before she can act on this information she collapses with the flu. She recovers back in England but wonders if she is having a nightmare about the death. When more bodies fall, she heads back to the front line to investigate. Several times her life is threatened, but with the help of others, she solves the crime. The Todds, as usual, have several interestingly developed characters who move the story along. For readers who enjoy historical fiction and mysteries, this should be a good book.
  • Andrea B. (Phoenix, AZ)
    WW I Nurse
    This is the 4th in the Bess Crawford series about an English nurse during WW I. This is the first in the series that I have read and it is not necessary to have read the others to follow the story line here. The historical background of WW I as told from a medical worker's perspective is interesting. It brings home the awful carnage of that war and how primitive medical science was at that time. The mystery is creative. However, the clues followed and the person suspected turn out to be not the reality. The real solution to the mystery becomes apparent only at the end of the book. As is usual in mysteries, there is a crisis with a narrowly averted murder. The motives for the crimes committed seemed a little far fetched. Nonetheless, I found the setting of WW I England and France and the social culture of England interesting enough to justify reading this book. I liked the book well enough to read the others in this series.
  • Randy
    An Unmarked Grave
    Being an avid fan of Charles Todd through the Inspector Ian Rutledge series, it is difficult for me to see this with fresh eyes. I entered the Bess Crawford mysteries out of order as “An Unmarked Grave” is the fourth novel in the series and the first I have read. Most of the things I really love about books written by Todd are present, the vivid portrayal of each scene, the insightfulness that comes through the main character (Bess in this series) and the broad range of historical context/perspective - all excellent. There are a number of main characters that are very likeable. What got in the way of my full enjoyment of “An Unmarked Grave” was the plot itself. The motivations of the villains, the speculations involved in solving the mystery, the behavior of various characters and the circumstances surrounding how people came to be in one place or another at the time they did left me thinking “Huh? Oh well” and then I would read on. I believe that as long as you’re not a real stickler for how neatly the plot is knit together or for believability there is plenty in this novel to enjoy. For those first reading Charles Todd’s Bess Crawford series, I recommend starting with the first of the series and read through. When you progress to this book, you will buy it, enjoy it and likely say “It's not one of the best” and go on to the next one. From my experience with the Ian Rutledge series, I expect you will be rewarded. What saved “An Unmarked Grave” for me is that it is written by a very gifted writing team. The plot represented a bit (albeit a central bit) of gristle in an otherwise good steak (vegetarians please edit with a suitable metaphor). Much good writing and enjoyable personality amidst a story not so well crafted.
  • Shelby L. (Hamden, CT)
    Worth reading
    Lately I've been entranced by all things British and this book didn't disappoint in satisfying me. I've not read the preceding books in the series but will.
    Bess Crawford is a wonderful character, way ahead of her time as an independent woman. She delves into solving the mysteries of the deaths presented with determination and courage. She's clever and very feisty.
    The author's vivid descriptions of time and place were easily seen in my mind's eye.
    The book would appeal to any period mystery lover, especially women.
  • Norman G. (Diamond Bar, CA)
    Excellent, as always
    I always enjoy books by Charles Todd, and this was no exception. The characterization made you care about the people and most seemed very believable. The historical background added to the authenticity with its accuracy. The only complaint has to do with the Dickensian string of coincidences. Otherwise the plot holds and the ending surprises. A satisfying read.


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