Wendy R. (Riverside, CA)
New Favorite Author!
I have read a number of enjoyable mysteries of late, but this one . . . Oh, how I love thee, Deborah Crombie! Where have you been all my life and why haven't I read anything by you before? No Mark Upon Her is the 14th book in the series, I believe, but my first one by the author. It didn't matter that I didn't know the history of the characters (although, I am infinitely curious now and must know all!). The author offers enough background story to give the reader a good feel for the characters and their situations while at the same time not introducing irrelevant information.
No Mark Upon Her has it all: characters who get under your skin, an idyllic English setting, betrayal, ethical issues, family, suspense, and an itch to read more. Deborah Crombie has won me over with this one novel and is sure to become among my favorite mystery authors.
Amy M. (Brooklyn, NY)
This is one of the best mysteries I’ve read in a long time. The writing is scintillating, the complex criminal investigation is mesmerizing, filled with surprising twists and palpable tension and the three-dimensional characters are captivating. I loved the English setting, the skulling, which connected with the theme of power and control, and the K9 search-and rescue team. The juxtaposition of the investigation with the family life of the Detectives Duncan Kincaid and Gemma James, married with children, made them more relatable.
This book is for anyone who enjoys a riveting police investigation, intriguing, memorable characters and learning about British culture and society.
Joe S. (Port Orange, FL)
No Mark upon Her
This was the first of this series I had read and it certainly will not be the last. The complex plot, the description of the settings and the well thought out characters make this one of the better mysteries that I have read. The explanation of the rowing culture and the use of rescue dogs made it even more enjoyable. I'm ready for my next book in this series.
Marion T. (Palatine, IL)
No Mark Upon Her
This is the first of the a series of 14 books by Deborah Crombie that I have read. Let it be said that if I had read all 14 the characters would have had a lot more history, but the author has written this one that could stand alone. There are strong characters both as the main continuing ones and those that are introduced only in this book. The plot and subplots are interesting and hook the reader right from the start of the book. I am looking forward to going back and reading the rest of the series and to any new ones that may come.
Therese X. (CALERA, AL)
High marks for NO MARK UPON HER
Deborah Crombie’s fourteenth police procedural featuring Detective Inspector Gemma James and Detective Superintendent Duncan Kincaid is another triumph. Originally, Gemma and Duncan were partners in their early days in the London police force. Now risen in the ranks and and living as a blended family, their cases have gotten more serious. This novel features the very competitive world of “Sculling” or rowing. Rebecca Meredith, last chance Olympic hopeful and detective with the Met in London, goes out for a solitary row at dusk and disappears. The Thames Valley Search and Rescue team are called out but it’s too late: “Becca” is found murdered with no obvious rhyme, reason or obvious clues. Eventually assigned to the case, Duncan Kinkaid is “encouraged” by his boss to find the ex-husband as chief suspect. This was news to Kincaid who was used to hunting for the truth and no evidence points to him. Meanwhile, Gemma James returns to work after personal leave, which Duncan was due to follow with to manage their growing family responsibilities, including three children, a dog and a cat. Now he has an important case and tensions abound at home as well as when Gemma decides to follow up a rumor that Rebecca Meredith was unfavorably tied to a senior officer and a possible intra-departmental cover-up. Tensions twist and turn right to the end of a complex story. As usual, Crombie’s writing is “crowded with incident” putting the reader right into the plot as well as the flavor of the neighborhoods of London. The research on Sculling is impressive, with chapter notes for the reader’s enlightenment. If there’s one flaw, it’s the constant heaviness of the family life which often competes with weight of the investigations. For this reader, the family conflicts should be more in the background, although their difficulties reflect modern situations of full time law enforcement couples. Otherwise, this is another superb entry in the Crombie canon.
Linda Z. (Corydon, IN)
No Mark Upon Her
Deborah Crombie is one of my favorite authors and she does not disappoint in this her 14th British mystery with Gemma and Duncan. The usual characters are there in a brand new setting. Anyone who enjoys mysteries with more characterization will go for this series. An an Anglophile, I particularly enjoy all the different locations in London and Great Britain. I think men or women would enjoy these books as well as book clubs. I would recommend the Inspector Lynley series by Elizabeth George and the Inspector Banks series by Peter Robinson for readers who enjoy the Crombie series.
Dorian B. (Bainbridge, NY)
No Mark Upon Her
This was the first of Deborah Crombie's books that I have read, and I found it to belong with many of the better contemporary mystery writers of today. Though part of a series, I did not feel that I had needed to read the previous books to appreciate the characters. I liked the idea of a husband and wife team and felt that Crombie developed the characters and the plot well. I would highly recommend the book.