Continuing my read of Elly Griffiths’ Ruth Galloway series with The Locked Room, the most recent book, published in 2022. It starts early in 2020 (we all know what’s about to happen) with life continuing as normal along the marshes of Norfolk, and Ruth making a trip to London to clear out some of her deceased mother’s belongings. Among them, she finds a picture of her house taken several years before she was born and with the cryptic notation ‘Dawn, 1963’ on the back in her mother’s hand. And then rumblings of a new virus start circulating, with some people saying it will be nothing while others start planning for the worst. Meanwhile, Nelson is investigating potential murders made to look like suicides.
As always, I enjoyed the characters, places, and hints of Norfolk history which lead me down the Wikipedia rabbit hole. This time, the history involves the Grey Lady, a plague victim rumored to still haunt an area of Norwich enticingly called Tombland. The tale of a plague victim works well with the current situation the characters find themselves in (early days of Covid with lockdowns and shortages). The author apparently wrote this one during Covid and I think captured the early uncertainty and strangeness very well, while also telling a story.
This was the first time I felt some of the plotting was a little obvious – I think I knew what the photo meant within a page of Ruth finding it, and was a little cross that such a smart woman wouldn’t also have twigged it. But, still a good read and I will wait for more to come in the series, although I guess now that I’m completely caught up it will be a while.