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A Long Shadow: An Inspector Ian Rutledge Mystery (Inspector Ian Rutledge Mysteries) Paperback – October 25, 2011


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Product Details

  • Series: Inspector Ian Rutledge Mysteries (Book 8)
  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks; Reprint edition (October 25, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061208515
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061208515
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 5.3 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.9 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (55 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #127,374 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. Set in 1919, Todd's excellent eighth psychological whodunit to feature the insightful but haunted Insp. Ian Rutledge picks up shortly after the harrowing events chronicled in A Cold Treachery (2005). Rutledge travels to the remote and desolate English village of Dudlington after the town constable is shot in the back with an arrow while exploring a forest shunned by the locals. The inspector suspects a connection between the attack and the disappearance of a young girl, but he finds himself in an unfamiliar role when an unknown stalker targets him, leaving ominous clues that indicate that he's vulnerable at all times. Rutledge's fragile psyche comes in for additional battering from an enigmatic woman who claims to be able to contact the dead. Todd's plotting and characterization are, as usual, first-rate, and the tormented motivations behind the novel's dark acts are presented with a sensitivity and refinement reminiscent of the best of P.D. James. The ambiguous ending will leave both longtime fans and new readers anxiously awaiting the sequel. (Jan.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From School Library Journal

Adult/High School-Scotland Yard Inspector Rutledge, a World War I victim of shell shock, is haunted by those he had to send out of the trenches to horrible deaths. His survivor's guilt is manifested in Hamish, whom he was forced to execute for refusing to fight, and whose ghost is his constant companion, always ready to chide, warn, and offer mocking opinions about the task at hand. The eighth in this acclaimed series finds Rutledge in an isolated rural village north of London, charged with bringing to justice the criminal who has gravely wounded its constable, sending an arrow through his chest while he was investigating a murder. And someone is hunting the inspector himself, leaving engraved cartridge casings behind to torment him. Authentic representations of the post-World War I era and an absorbing plot with twists and turns as challenging as the country roads that Rutledge travels make a gripping story. Well-drawn characters and scenes, wry local humor, and plot details steep the mystery in English country life. Frequent scene changes and puzzling dead ends may be a challenge for some teens, but their perseverance will be rewarded.-Molly Connally, Chantilly Regional Library, Fairfax County, VA
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

More About the Author

Charles and Caroline Todd are a mother-and-son writing team who live on the east coast of the United States. Caroline has a BA in English Literature and History, and a Masters in International Relations. Charles has a BA in Communication Studies with an emphasis on Business Management, and a culinary arts degree that means he can boil more than water. Caroline has been married (to the same man) for umpteen years, and Charles is divorced.

Charles and Caroline have a rich storytelling heritage. Both spent many evenings on the porch listening to their fathers and grandfathers reminisce. And a maternal grandmother told marvelous ghost stories. This tradition allows them to write with passion about events before their own time. And an uncle/great-uncle who served as a flyer in WWI aroused an early interest in the Great War.

Charles learned the rich history of Britain, including the legends of King Arthur, William Wallace, and other heroes, as a child. Books on Nelson and by Winston Churchill were always at hand. Their many trips to England gave them the opportunity to spend time in villages and the countryside, where there'a different viewpoint from that of the large cities. Their travels are at the heart of the series they began ten years ago.

Charles's love of history led him to a study of some of the wars that shape it: the American Civil War, WWI and WWII. He enjoys all things nautical, has an international collection of seashells, and has sailed most of his life. Golf is still a hobby that can be both friend and foe. And sports in general are enthusiasms. Charles had a career as a business consultant. This experience gave him an understanding of going to troubled places where no one was glad to see him arrive. This was excellent training for Rutledge's reception as he tries to find a killer in spite of local resistance.

Caroline has always been a great reader and enjoyed reading aloud, especially poetry that told a story. The Highwayman was one of her early favorites. Her wars are WWI, the Boer War, and the English Civil War, with a sneaking appreciation of the Wars of the Roses as well. When she's not writing, she's traveling the world, gardening, or painting in oils. Her background in international affairs backs up her interest in world events, and she's also a sports fan, an enthusiastic follower of her favorite teams in baseball and pro football. She loves the sea, but is a poor sailor. (Charles inherited his iron stomach from his father.) Still, she has never met a beach she didn't like.

Both Caroline and Charles share a love of animals, and family pets have always been rescues. There was once a lizard named Schnickelfritz. Don't ask.

Writing together is a challenge, and both enjoy giving the other a hard time. The famous quote is that in revenge, Charles crashes Caroline's computer, and Caroline crashes his parties. Will they survive to write more novels together? Stay tuned! Their father/husband is holding the bets.

Customer Reviews

Charles Todd's Ian Rutledge novels are all well written and interesting.
M. J. Palik
This series is one of the few I still buy in hardback, I just can't wait for the paperback to come out.
elffriend48
They are very well-written and are as much about the characters as about the plot.
Dolphin

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By P. Bigelow VINE VOICE on January 28, 2006
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is the eighth entry in this outstanding series featuring Ian Rutledge and his constant companion Hamish is set in 1919 and continues the story of the haunted Rutledge. In this outing, Rutledge is sent to the remote village of Dudlington to investigate the attempted murder (by bow and arrow) of the local constable. Rutledge is faced with a close-mouthed community suspicious of outsiders and determined to keep its secrets. Slowly, but surely Rutledge begins to gather information. Almost immediately, he realizes that the attempt on the constable's life may be linked to the disappearance of a young lady in the village. His attempts to solve the mystery of who shot the constable and why are hampered by a stalker who somehow knows where he will be almost before he himself knows. In the end, Rutledge solves the crime and, almost simultaneously, discovers who wants him (and Hamish) dead.

This is another "I can't put this down even though it's two in the morning and I have to go to work in five hours" entry. Charles Todd sits at the top of my list of the best authors writing mysteries/procedurals today. Todd continues to develop the personality of both Rutledge and Hamish and the relationship between the two. Todd's descriptions of the village, its inhabitants, and the surrounding land are vivid - so vivid that while you're reading you can almost feel the rising winter's wind stealing its way into your bones.

This is an outstandingly written series and deserves a very large following. If you are new to the series, I suggest you start with the first book "A Test of Wills" to understand the relationship between Rutledge and Hamish as well as watch the author grow these two. Along the way, Todd writes a wonderful procedural and shares each bit of information with the reader. Just when you figure out who the culprit is, Todd throws yet another piece of the puzzle into the mix and both you and Rutledge are forced to change your minds.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful By John T. Farrell on May 23, 2006
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I enjoyed this novel, as I do all of Charles Todd's books about Inspector Ian Rutledge. The Rutledge novels are well-written, are replete with minutely researched post-Great War period details, and delineate a type of character - the psychologically wounded war veteran trying to adjust - not seen often in literature these days. All these things are to the good, and Todd has marked out an almost virgin territory that has me hooked as a fan.

But, what for many may be part of the appeal of these books has become a liability for me. I'm talking about the voice of Hamish MacLeod that resides inside Rutledge's head. If Hamish in life was as bitter, abusive, and censorious as he is in Rutledge's mind, then little wonder he died friendless and alone. After eight times out with this unyielding and unfriendly presence, I find his running commentary tedious, irritating, and extraneous to the mystery.

Hamish's continued and unabated presence is also beginning to stretch credibility. If he is truly present, then Rutledge is insane and shouldn't be able to withstand the constant carping much longer, at least while continuing to solve emotionally taxing mysteries one after another. If he's a manifestation of Rutledge's guilt, then why doesn't this otherwise insightful and rational man consult someone and get some help in exorcising the ghost - an alienist (as psychiatrists were known then), or an Anglican clergyman trained as an exorcist, or his new almost-girl friend, the mysterious psychic Mrs. Channing?

Otherwise, "A Long Shadow" is up to Todd's usual standard. The characters are well-drawn, as is the depiction of English village life, with its class system, its insiders, its outsiders, and its endless gossip and secrets.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Detra Fitch VINE VOICE on January 3, 2006
Format: Hardcover
Set in the year 1919. Scotland Yard detective Ian Rutledge spent four years fighting in the Great War. Now he is back to being a dedicated investigator. But it seems that someone has targeted Ian for a game of cat and mouse. Someone follows Ian, leaving brass machine gun cartridge casings, with interesting designs etched upon them, where he is sure to find them. Ian, knowing that his stalker seems to holding his leash, finds his resolve actually shaking.

Ian's investigation of a constable's death makes him the outsider this time around. Locals want nothing to do with him, except for one young lady who claims to be a psychic.

**** This is the eighth Inspector Ian Rutledge novel and probably the best yet, in my opinion. Only the prior novel, "A Cold Treachery", can come close to claiming the spot as my favorite story within this series. A bit long winded at times, but very good reading. ****

Reviewed by Detra Fitch of Huntress Reviews.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By SDRTX on February 21, 2006
Format: Hardcover
A LONG SHADOW is the eighth in the series featuring Scotland Yard's Inspector Ian Rutledge. Set in England after World War I, Rutledge returned from war damaged from the many traumatic experiences including having to execute a subordinate. He now carries the ghost of Hamish around with him with whom carries on inner dialogue. Hamish acts as his conscience and is very much a character in all the books.

In this entry,Rutledge is sent to Dudlington where a constable was shot in the back with a bow and arrow. It's not long before another case comes to his attention. A seventeen-year old girl is missing, and no one knows what happened to her. She seemingly vanished into thin air. There seems to be a connection between the constable who was shot and the missing girl. Rutledge delves into old secrets involving family pride and unbendable will. In addition to doing his job, Rutledge is being stalked by an enemy or enemies unknown to him. Despite danger to himself, Rutledge is determined to unravel the secrets and lies that have been buried too long.

The Ian Rutledge series has fast become one of my favorite mystery series if not my favorite. Each book is better than the last, and the last was pretty excellent. The are hard books to put down, so leave plenty of time to read. The stories are as much a character-study as they are a well-plotted historical mystery. Rutledge is a tortured hero so the atmosphere is always a bit dark and melancholy. He is a hero for whom you can totally root-likable, somewhat fragile and always interesting. Highly recommonded.
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