Some secrets are too big to stay buried...
A few months ago, Boston expat Maura Donovan was rekindled with her mother after more than twenty years of absence. Since then, Maura has been getting accustomed to Irish living, complete with an inherited house and a pub named Sullivan's. But now, her mother has returned--and she's brought Maura's half-sister in tow. To make matters more confusing, a handful of Cork University students are knocking on Maura's door asking about a mystical fairy fort that happens to be located on Maura's piece of land.
The lore indicates that messing with the fort can cause bad luck, and most everyone is telling Maura not to get too involved for fear of its powers, but Maura is curious about her own land, and she definitely doesn't buy into the superstition. Then one of the students disappears after a day of scoping out the fort on Maura's property.
Maura treads carefully, asking the folks around town who might have an idea, but no one wants anything to do with these forts. She has to take matters into her own hand--it's her land, after all. But when she uncovers a decades-old corpse buried in the center of the fort, nothing is for certain.
At the start of Connolly's solid, if somewhat draggy, seventh County Cork mystery (after 2019's The Lost Traveller), spunky American expat Maura Donovan, who has been living in Ireland for little more than a year, receives a caller at her cottage door: Ciara McCarthy, an archaeology grad student at University College Cork. Ciara wants to explore the mysterious ring forts, which date back to the early Middle Ages, on Maura's property. Maura's permission leads to Ciara and two fellow students doing so, but when one of the students disappears, Maura and Sean Murphy, her garda friend, begin a search. Instead of the missing student, they find a dead body buried in one of the ring forts. That it's evidently been there a long time raises a lot of tantalizing questions. Meanwhile, Maura struggles to reconnect with her mother, who only recently reentered her life after a 20-year absence, and the half-sister she didn't know she had. The drawn-out plot may put off newcomers, but series fans will enjoy spending time in the company of old friends.