The Office of the Dead (The Roth Trilogy)

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9780002325592: The Office of the Dead (The Roth Trilogy)

Janet Byfield has everything Wendy Appleyard lacks: she's beautiful; she has a handsome husband, a clergyman on the verge of a promotion; and most of all she has an adorable little daughter, Rosie. So when Wendy's life falls apart, it's to her oldest friend, Janet, that she turns.

At first it seems to Wendy as though nothing can touch the Byfields' perfect existence in 1950s Cathedral Close, Rosington, but old sins gradually come back to haunt the present, and new sins are bred in their place. The shadow of death seeps through the Close, and only Wendy, the outsider, is able to glimpse the truth. But can she grasp its dark and twisted logic in time to prevent a tragedy whose roots lie buried deep in the past

The Office of the Dead is a chilling novel of crime and retribution, and is the third volume of Andrew Taylor's stunning and acclaimed Roth Trilogy.

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About the Author:

Andrew Taylor is the award winning author of a number of novels. he and his wife live with their children in the Forest of Dean, England. He and his family live in the Forest of Dean, England. He has been awarded the John Creasey Award from Crime Writers of America, the Scroll from Mystery Writers of America, the CWA Golden Dagger, and the CWA Ellis Peters Historical Dagger, as well.

From Publishers Weekly:

Maiden ladies who would make Miss Marple smile and villains as vile as Thomas Harris's Hannibal Lecter populate this witty, urbane but dark third volume in Taylor's Roth Trilogy (The Four Last Things and The Judgement of Strangers). Was Isabella of Roth really incinerated by evil forces centuries ago? Can Wendy and Henry Appleyard prevent a reprise of her murder? These questions underlie Taylor's 20th novel and demonstrate why he's earned a Creasy Award. Wendy flees 1950s London to escape her philandering husband, Henry, and takes refuge with chum Janet Blyfield in the seminary town of Rosington. She begins work as the cathedral library cataloguer and stumbles on an ancient mystery surrounding Victorian poet-priest Francis Youlgreave. Eventually, a reformed Henry, risking everything to get Wendy back, joins in the sleuthing. They research vicious acts of vandalism and murderApossibly perpetrated by the unholy man of God, Youlgreave. The plot expands with Wendy's secret attraction to Janet's clergyman spouse, David, and the arrival of Janet's demented father, John Treevor. Soon, animal carcasses and human corpses litter the Dark Hostelry, the Blyfields' moldering parsonage. Wendy, impelled by love for her friends, dodges personal danger to solve the wicked riddle. A melancholy denouement turns the case topsy-turvy. While the books of the Roth Trilogy may be read independently, for maximum enjoyment they ought to be read in sequence.
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