A woman digs up a buried treasure—and a buried body—in the Scottish Highlands: “There are few other crime writers in the same league.”—Maureen Corrigan, The Washington Post
Six feet under in a Highland peat bog lies Alice Somerville’s inheritance, buried by her grandfather at the end of World War II. But when Alice finally uncovers it, she finds an unwanted surprise—a body with a bullet hole between the eyes. Meanwhile, DCI Karen Pirie is dealing not only with this cold case but with a domestic violence case, and as as she gets closer to the truth, it becomes clear that not everyone shares her desire for justice. Or even the idea of what justice is.
An engrossing, twisty thriller, Broken Ground is an outstanding entry in this Diamond Dagger-winning author’s “superior series” (The New York Times Book Review).
“As always, McDermid’s story lines are as richly layered as her protagonist.”—Publishers Weekly
“One of the best things about this series is the details of Karen's working life, the obstacles as well as the satisfactions, and the small pleasures of her off hours.”—Kirkus Reviews
In McDermind's fine fourth novel featuring Edinburgh Det. Chief Insp. Karen Pirie (after 2016's Out of Bounds), Alice and Will Somerville, a married couple, set out on a treasure hunt in the Scottish Highlands. They have a map to guide them to the spot where Alice's grandfather buried two American motorcycles in protective boxes in 1944 when he was serving in the British army. To their surprise, they discover a body along with the motorcycles in the peat. When Pirie is called to the scene a rarity for a cold case detective, getting to see the body in situ she realizes the peat's preservation properties have worked in her favor. A forensic anthropologist identifies the victim as a professional athlete, who disappeared around 1995, based on his shoes. But even with a name, reconstructing a decades-old murder is tricky, and this time there's a lot of pressure from above to solve it. Meanwhile, Pirie becomes embroiled in a contemporary crime involving domestic violence. As always, McDermid's story lines are as richly layered as her protagonist.