Another Review at MyShelf.Com

An Oxford Scandal
Inspector Antrobus Series – Book III
Norman Russell

Matador (Troubador)
1 August 2017/ ISBN 9781788033497

Reviewed by Rachel A Hyde

Oxford 1895: Workmen are installing a new boiler and find a mysterious coffin in a sealed underground vault. An inscription seems to imply that these could be the missing bones of St. Thomas à Becket, a find that would have important consequences for the college. One of the tutors is Anthony Jardine, who divides his private life between his wife Dora and mistress Rachel. When Dora is found murdered, it looks as though Anthony is the culprit, but Inspector Antrobus thinks otherwise…

I have long been a fan of Mr. Russell’s work; if you enjoy imaginative Victorian gothic mysteries you will too. This is the third in his latest series set in Oxford during the 1890s and, like all this author’s work, manages to suck the reader in from the first page and not let go. He is adept at creating a scene in a few words and brings to life the world of academe, rife with petty jealousies, old secrets and sins casting long shadows. The answer to the murders lies in the past and the story grows and changes as the pages turn. To its detriment this is not a difficult case to solve, but a lot of the fun lies in the chase and also in catching up with the sleuths. These include the consumptive Antrobus to the real-life figure of pioneer female doctor Sophia Jax-Blake. I hope this won’t be the last in this series, which has enough material to run for some time. Highly recommended, but it helps to have read the first two in the series An Oxford Tragedy and An Oxford Anomaly.

Reviews of other titles in this series

An Oxford Tragedy
An Oxford Anomaly


Reviewed 2017