Author: Val McDermid
Title: The Grave Tattoo
‘A 200-year old secret is now a matter of life and death. And it could be worth a fortune…’
Well… I don’t normally do ‘history’ but I really enjoyed this book. The novel follows Jane Gresham, an expert on William Wordsworth, as she tries to track down a lost poem. A poem she believes Wordsworth wrote detailing what really happened to Fletcher Christian after the events on the Bounty following the famous mutiny.
Jane is at once a real and likeable character; the initial hints at her love life give her dimension aside from her fascination with the famous Lakeland poet and the cast of support characters add to that to give the whole tale pace.
Admittedly my first thought was that I would get a bit lost in the history of the Lakes and the back story of Wordsworth, but McDermid has kept the writing easily accessible, even to someone like me who is not at all into poetry! Also, the theory that there might be ‘sequel’ of sorts to the Mutiny On The Bounty story, written up as a poem was just fascinating.
Add into that a 200 year old body, suspicious modern deaths and a tense race against the clock and you have on your hands on your book that, if you’ll excuse the cliché, is very difficult to put down. Certainly I found myself reading this one on the loo in every spare second!