- Series: An Archeo-forensic Mystery
- Hardcover: 240 pages
- Publisher: The Permanent Press (April 25, 2014)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1579623549
- ISBN-13: 978-1579623548
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 1 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 14 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,725,527 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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My Lady of the Bog (An Archeo-forensic Mystery) Hardcover – April 25, 2014
Xander Donne, an American anthropologist working in Exeter, England, is not surprised when a long-buried body is found in a nearby bog: corpses have been turning up in bogs all over the country for many years, perfectly preserved relics of millennia-old culture. But this one is a bit different: it’s not nearly as old as other corpses (several centuries, yes, but not thousands of years old), and it was buried with a treasure trove of ancient Celtic artifacts, including a book written in an ancient language from another part of the world. Soon Xander learns that the ancient writing on the stakes that had secured the body to the ground—the stakes that have now been removed—instructs anyone who finds the body not to release it from its bindings because the woman is a witch. Despite this setup, the novel isn’t a supernatural thriller; it’s a story about a scientist who is determined to find the explanation for some unusual and frightening goings-on. A compelling thriller, certain to interest Erin Hart fans. --David Pitt
"In My Lady of the Bog author Peter Hayes turns the discovery of a beautiful female cadaver into an enchanting murder mystery, ghost story, and romance. This concept is great fun, enlivened by Hayes' brisk and handsome writing style. The American author has a knack for descriptive metaphors that capture in a phrase what some writers might belabor a paragraph on. He gives helpful background on such subjects as bog bodies, where the heck Dorset is, and what else happened there. My Lady of the Bog is a page-turner with a corpse we can fall in love with, runes we should have read, and a sword-hacked scholar in a carpeted study of prim, modern-day London." --NY Journal of Books
"A genuinely innovative piece of writing by Peter Hayes. This is one of those pleasingly unclassifiable books that flirts with genres as if they had no meaning. The author plays a very skillful game, nicely blending police procedural with historical mystery, adventure yarnery, witchcraft, spells and curses, and modern thriller as our hero confronts the demons in our psychological make-up. An entrancing read and recommended." --David Marshall, Thinking About Books
"This was a well-written mystery tale, set in modern times, but has a Victorian feel: though that may merely be because of the setting. It held my interest from beginning to end. The author makes the reader imagine ghosts, goblins, witches and fairies. And in the end you may be left wondering if there might have been a supernatural setting after all? Highly recommended, and I was surprised by the ending." --Tom Johnson, Detective Mystery Stories
"Hayes is to be commended for his scholarly historical research and a valiant stab at a dual narrative. Consider for those who relish an unusual gothic imbued with legend." --Library Journal
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Also discovered with the treasure is a book written in an old language, which Xander secretly sends to his mentor to translate. The book becomes part of Xander as the story unfolds, and more murder occurs, and doubt is placed upon the new bride of his mentor. And it appears there are strange happenings between the young bride and the woman found dead in the bog. Was she a witch, or fairy? The writing on the pegs holding the body warns not to release the witch back to the living. Does she have something to do with the new murders? Has a supernatural element been released on the English countryside, and does the ghost of the dead woman now possess the young bride accused of murdering her husband?
This was a well-written mystery tale, set in modern times, but has a Victorian feel: though that may merely be because of the setting. Although I found it moved slow; nevertheless it held my interest from beginning to end. The author makes the reader imagine ghosts, goblins, witches and fairies. And in the end you may be left wondering if there might have been a supernatural setting after all? Highly recommended, and I was surprised by the ending.
Though I really enjoyed the premise for this book, I found the deliverance a little disjointed. There were times while I was reading this book that I couldn’t put it down and others when I found myself frustrated because it felt as if important parts were hurried along and I thought the flow to the book was disorganized and jumpy. Despite this, I would recommend this book to people who might be interested in anthropology and a modern day murder mystery.
I'll admit that the first quarter of this story was good enough; it made me determined to read through to the conclusion. But the author's effort suffers from too much reliance on coincidence, too many twists, too little plausibility. That the roster of key characters is drawn from around the globe (India, Kenya, USA x 2) is an example of how it stretches credulity.
Ultimately, Renaissance man, author Peter Hayes (author, marketing communications writer, songwriter) might better channel his energy into a different writing niche. I was left wondering, though, how he came to have a 1992 family portrait shot by Annie Leibovitz.