19 Aug 2019

, , ,

Book Review / A Shroud of Leaves by Rebecca Alexander

“Finely observed beautifully written” Daily Mail on The Secrets of Life and Death

Archaeologist Sage Westfield has her first forensics case: investigating the murder of a teenage girl. Hidden by holly leaves, the girl’s body has been discovered on the grounds of a stately home, where another teenage girl went missing twenty years ago - but her body was never found. 

With mysterious links between the two disappearances, the police suspect the reclusive owner, Alistair Chorleigh, who was questioned twenty years ago but never charged. But when Sage investigates a nearby burial mound - and uncovers rumours of an ancient curse - she discovers the story of Edwin Masters, his friend Peter Chorleigh, and an excavation over a hundred years ago, that also ended in a mysterious disappearance. 

Still recovering from the traumatic events of her recent past, Sage will need both her modern forensics skills and her historical archaeological knowledge to unearth the devastating truth.

Published:     9th April 2019
Publisher:  Titan Books
Goodreads :  Click here
Series or Stand-Alone:  Book 2, Sage Westfield
Source:  Review Copy from Publisher


Having read Rebecca Alexander's first book, A Baby's Bones, last year (and loved it by the way!), I was so excited to pick this up.  The best way I can describe this is a historic who done it with a bit of a mix of what I can only describe at the moment as almost supernatural.

This story is split between two time lines.   In the first time line, you have Sage in the present day where she is brought in to investigate the murder of a teenage girl.  But this murder is not your ordinary run of the mill murder.  The body is hidden by holly and placed in a way that was almost caring.  Not only that but twenty years previously another person had gone missing.  Sage is assisting in the investigation of not only the current day murder but in the mystery of the missing person from years ago.  In the second time line, you have Edwin Masters and his friend Peter Chorleigh who are excavating the same place where Sage is in the current day but only a hundred years earlier.

The two time lines are weaved together beautifully so that as you are reading Sage's part of the story then the story of Edwin and Peter pop up to explain a bit more of the story.

I could not put this down.  Even though it was 400 pages long I read this in one day, over a very quiet Sunday!!

Also, even though this is book 2 in a series you do not have to read the first book to get what is happening in the second book but, certainly, reading the first book (A Baby's Bones) will give you more of an idea of the bigger picture with the main character, Sage.