One of my favorite author teams takes their police detective all the way to Wales for this 23rd story in the Inspector Ian Rutledge series. I was so pleased to find myself in Wales because Charles Todd has the gift of making me feel completely comfortable with any settings for their stories which I'm not personally familiar with. I found myself able to visualize the surroundings quite vividly which adding dimension to the stories. I was also unfamiliar with the Bantam Division of soldiers from World War I and a lot of information was given without any feeling that it was only an information dump.
This story takes place in 1921 with Rutledge practically chained to his desk at Scotland Yard doing paperwork because Chief Superintendent Markham doesn't want to be reminded of how much his own reputation is enhanced by Rutledge solving the previous case. When a Chief Constable in a northern Welsh county asks for help from Scotland Yard Markham is delighted to send Rutledge about as far away as possible. A body has been found in the River Dee under the Aqueduct and there is a question of whether it was an accident or suicide. So Inspector Rutledge drives from London to Wales to begin picking up the smallest of clues to help him solve this riddle. Accident, suicide or murder, it takes patience for Rutledge to add up all the tiny clues to solve the death. Investigating among the men who served in the Bantam Division takes Rutledge back into the memories he has tried so hard to suppress of his own actions. The PTSD Rutledge suffers from makes a vivid return especially with Corporal Hamish MacLeod so aggressively triggering those memories from the safety of Rutledge's mind.
It's all here, in this story, the ingredients put together to make a reading experience that I enjoyed from beginning to end. A great addition to the series.