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Hunting Shadows (Inspector Ian Rutledge Series #16)

Hunting Shadows (Inspector Ian Rutledge Series #16)

4.6 32
by Charles Todd

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In the latest mystery from New York Times bestselling author Charles Todd, Inspector Ian Rutledge is summoned to the quiet, isolated Fen country to solve a series of seemingly unconnected murders before the killer strikes again

August 1920. A society wedding at Ely Cathedral in Cambridgeshire becomes a crime scene when a guest is shot just as the bride


In the latest mystery from New York Times bestselling author Charles Todd, Inspector Ian Rutledge is summoned to the quiet, isolated Fen country to solve a series of seemingly unconnected murders before the killer strikes again

August 1920. A society wedding at Ely Cathedral in Cambridgeshire becomes a crime scene when a guest is shot just as the bride arrives. Two weeks later, after a fruitless search for clues, the local police are forced to call in Scotland Yard. But not before there is another shooting in a village close by. This second murder has a witness; the only problem is that her description of the killer is so horrific it's unbelievable. Badgered by the police, she quickly recants her story.

Despite his experience, Inspector Ian Rutledge can find no connection between the two deaths. One victim was an Army officer, the other a solicitor standing for Parliament; their paths have never crossed. What links these two murders? Is it something from the past? Or is it only in the mind of a clever killer?

Then the case reminds Rutledge of a legendary assassin whispered about during the war. His own dark memories come back to haunt him as he hunts for the missing connection—and yet, when he finds it, it isn't as simple as he'd expected. He must put his trust in the devil in order to find the elusive and shocking answer.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
★ 12/02/2013
Tricky plotting and rich atmospherics (“the Fen country, where water had separated everyone and made foreigners of people ten miles distant”) distinguish bestseller Todd’s 16th novel featuring Scotland Yard’s Insp. Ian Rutledge (after 2013’s Proof of Guilt). In September 1920, Rutledge has a real baffler on his hands: a sniper has just killed two seemingly unrelated men in the Fen country of East Anglia. Captain Hutchinson was gunned down as he was about to enter a church for a wedding, and Tory candidate for Parliament Herbert Swift’s head was blown off as he began a stump speech. The initial inquiries yielded little and resulted in the locals calling in the Yard, but apart from a woman who claims she saw a monster just as Swift was shot, there isn’t much for Rutledge to go on. Todd (the pen name of a mother-son writing team) has rarely been better. Agent: Jane Chelius, Jane Chelius Literary Agency. (Feb.)
“Another well-written, well-plotted entry in this always engaging mystery series.
Romantic Times 4 1/2 stars on HUNTING SHADOWS
“Another winner…Strong atmosphere and a complicated mystery make this book one that readers won’t be able to put down.”
Kirkus Reviews
Inspector Rutledge returns for another painstaking investigation of murders in the aftermath of World War I. When a sharpshooter kills Capt. Gordon Hutchinson at a wedding in Ely, Cambridgeshire, no one in the panicked crowd can tell precisely where the bullet came from. A similar shooting in the neighboring town of Wriston that kills the popular Tory candidate Herbert Swift draws Inspector Ian Rutledge from Scotland Yard. When he first arrives, Rutledge is nearly lost in the marshy Fens until a mysterious man emerges from the mist to steer him toward the hearth of Marcella Trowbridge. Even after Rutledge is able to find his way around by daylight, he's still enshrouded in fog in his attempts to discover if the two murders are related. Reports of a monster behind the rifle that killed the two men, a haunted mill and the mythical Green Man painted on the ceiling of Ely Cathedral lead Rutledge, in a blend of dogged research and intuitive leaps, to a case of two wronged women. But is more than one man exacting revenge? The mother-and-son team Todd (Proof of Guilt, 2013, etc.) may be letting up on their tortured hero: The ghostly voice of Hamish MacLeod, the soldier whom Rutledge had to shoot in the Great War, is a bit less prominent than in earlier installments. Less from ghost Hamish? That change may be as welcome to some fans as to the inspector himself, though others may miss the inspector's invisible partner and conscience.
Raleigh News & Observer
“As always, the North Carolina-based mother and son who write under the pseudonym Charles Todd do a beautiful job with the period detail, making these books a nostalgic outing to England between the world wars.”
Wilmington News Journal
“Readers who stick with the chase, though, should be enthralled, as Rutledge sorts through a fascinating portrait gallery of witnesses and suspects, most of whom aren’t telling him the whole truth.”
New York Times Book Review on HUNTING SHADOWS
“Of all the places where Inspector Ian Rutledge’s Scotland Yard assignments have taken him, the desolate Fen country must surely be the eeriest. [This is an] excellent historical series.”
Oklahoma City Oklahoman on HUNTING SHADOWS
“Elusive clues, suspense and excellent writing make for reading pleasure.”
Library Journal
War memories always filter through Inspector Rutledge's consciousness, but World War I rears up again when a sniper ruins a wedding in Ely Cathedral—and the killer doesn't stop at one. This is number 16 for the popular 1920s set series (after Proof of Guilt). [See Prepub Alert, 7/15/13.]

Product Details

HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
Inspector Ian Rutledge Series , #16
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
6.20(w) x 9.40(h) x 1.30(d)

Meet the Author

Charles Todd is the author of the Inspector Ian Rutledge mysteries, the Bess Crawford mysteries, and two stand-alone novels. A mother-and-son writing team, they live in Delaware and North Carolina, respectively.

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Hunting Shadows (Inspector Ian Rutledge Series #16) 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 32 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Started slow, got better towards middle of book,then couldnt put it down. Cb
Delphimo More than 1 year ago
I enjoy the method of writing for the mother/son team called Charles Todd. The characters are well developed and the setting becomes visible with their description. My only problem with this team is the extensive cast of characters. The ending exposes the killer and the need for vengeance for wrongs of the past. I like Ian Rutledge and his battle with the demons of the war, but at times, he seems so lonely. The story gives a realistic rendering of village life in England after WWI.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Inspector Rutledge is Still Coming Out On Top Often mystery book series it can get to a point where the books develop an assembly line feel. That is definitely not the case in this mother/son writing duo's 16th Inspector Rutledge mystery. This standalone '20s period mystery follows Rutledge as he investigates into two seemingly unrelated murder victims, both killed by an expert sniper. The writing for this novel is so vivid that you can feel the foggy atmosphere and easily imagine the individual characters. The mystery stands up to scrutiny as the Inspector makes connections and digs into the past for clues. I would say this would be a great bedside read except once you start the book you'll be up all night to finish it! Read this book and go back and read the other Inspector Rutledge's mysteries! I received this book in exchange for a fair and honest review Myrt.
Virginiaw More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed this story.  Kind of miss having more of Hamish in his head but know that he is getting better.  This had a great story and a few twists and turns.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love this series. Ian Rutledge is so sexy and somewhat a mystery too. Could see this series on PBS. The detective is off again to investigate a murder or two that happened in a quaint English village. Of course there are a lots of twists and turns as to who did it. I thought the ending was a surprise and made you think. Went back to read the beginning again and wonder if Mr. Rutledge actually solved this case. Would love to hear what others think about the ending. Can't wait for the next in the series. Also love the Betsy Crawford series. Waiting for the next one about the adventures of Betsy.
KrittersRamblings More than 1 year ago
Check out the full review at Kritters Ramblings Another Inspector Ian Rutledge novel as he is sent out to a small county to uncover two murders that seem to be connected, but no one knows why beyond how they were killed.   My absolute favorite part of the book was that author gave the murderer the story to tell at the beginning and he told the story of the two murders before the Inspector came on the scene - it was great to be inside his head for a moment. The other thing I enjoyed, although it took quite a long time to get to, was the connection that these two murders had, it was quite an interesting connection, I just felt like it took way too long to get to.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
BelleMM More than 1 year ago
Great book as always. Charles Todd does not disappoint with this book of hunting a suspect who is adept at keeping himself hid. I've yet to read one of these books without wanting more.
tedfeit0 More than 1 year ago
Two murders in nearby towns in the English Fen area stump the local police, and the call to Scotland Yard is made, bringing Ian Rutledge into the investigation. The first victim is an Army Captain visiting the region to attend a wedding; the second, a local solicitor standing election for a seat in a by-election. Both are shot with a rifle and there appear to be no witnesses or any relationship between the two men. Not an easy task for Rutledge, in this the 16th novel in the series, who in 1920 still suffers from the aftermath of his experiences in France during the Great War. The potential culprits are numerous, with lots of men in the area with wartime experience who possibly brought home souvenir rifles. Rutledge begins weeding them out, and it’s a tedious effort, with pressures from all sides. He draws on his own wartime experience and begins looking for someone who had sniper duties. The mother/son duo who writes the Rutledge mysteries (as well as the Bess Crawford series with which we’re about to be graced with a new addition) construct a simple step-by-step plot, as Rutledge painstakingly looks at all possibilities. As usual, the novel’s language and tenor is consistent with the period in which it takes place and the reader is brought along slowly and carefully to an intriguing conclusion. Recommended.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have read every book from both series and enjoyed them all very much. I eagerly await the next one(s).
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Ian Rutledge once again takes us again on a great unsolved murders. I look forward to the next book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Maybe he was wrong... Nodding lightly he finished the conversation before it became indepth, she was motivated that was for sure. <p> A pair of still crystal blue eyes watched Nightfall from the trees.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
blizzard: "thank you" she purred and laid in a sunny spot Viper: he looked around yawning and stretched fern : the elder laid in the shady corner taking a nap flarekit: she slept next to fern peacefully
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
My neighbor just left with their dad...their parents are divorced...lucky...))
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Sorry just angry
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
All May join.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The Tom nods, slowly approaching the Leader...
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Janbrla More than 1 year ago
Excellent addition to the series. I just wished they could write them faster.