A Long Shadow

A Long Shadow

Book - 2006
Average Rating:
Rate this:
It is 1919 and Scotland Yard's Inspector Ian Rutledge starts finding brass casings that seem to point to unfinished business involving the war. A man with a dark secret, Rutledge already walks on the edge of sanity, but now someone is hunting him. Will Rutledge live long enough to discover who and why?
Publisher: New York : HarperCollins, c2006
Edition: 1st ed. --
ISBN: 9780060786717
Characteristics: 341 p


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment
Feb 06, 2020

Inspector Ian Rutledge meets a mysterious woman at a party who makes him uncomfortable when the hostess suggests she lead a séance. But Meredith Channing, the woman, allows him an out. He receives a phone call and makes it into an urgent police matter so he can leave the party, finds an engraved machine gun shell on his way out, and ends up being sent to a small village by his superior, the odious Bowles, when a constable Bowles knows from London, is shot in the back by an arrow (!) in a haunted wood.

This sets up the beginnings of the plot: why was the constable in the wood, who would shoot him with an arrow, what is in the wood, how does the constable's past in London fit into the mystery, and what happened to seventeen-year-old Emma Mason three years ago? Ian is denied a room at the only inn in the village and is forced to live in the constable's house, an uncomfortable scenario for Ian. Most of the villagers are hostile and rude, gossip is rife, there is a pretentious old woman to deal with as well as a mysterious farmer's brother who was seriously damaged in the war, Ian draws Meredith Channing into the mystery, and he is being stalked by the person leaving machine gun shells and taking pot shots at him.

Ian Rutledge's thought processes are interesting, as always, and the after-effects of the war on the people who survived it, both in France and at home, are stark and sad. The mystery is convoluted but logical.

Aug 09, 2017

This is a dip in the series. I was scratching my head at the conclusion -- and I had grown tired of Hamish way before this entry in the series. But I had to give it its stars because I actually finished it (I sometimes give up after a few chapters on books that aren't well written or interesting.) If you haven't read the previous book you won't understand the references to the woman in Westmoreland, although that's not a deal breaker. The motive for the killings is pretty silly and the sub-plot about the bullet casings is a stretch, and leaves some questions. Again, the details about life in the village brings it to life (more maps, please, as in Cold Treachery.)

The plot in this series is always interesting. The writing style is a unpretentious and characters are complex enough to engage us from novel to novel. This particular story took the focus off the jealous boss but still hints at the scheming going on in London police post WWI. One always comes away with a new insight. This novel exposes the trauma of the common soldier who knew from the trenches that their leadership was inept and callous to the loss of life going on in France.

Apr 10, 2007

Inspector Ian Rutledge is back in a mystery that includes the usual assortment of deliberately misunderstanding set of characters in a unfriendly English village. After the constable is shot with a bow and arrow in a haunted wood, Rutledge is sent to Dudlington to investigate and finds himself on the receiving end of a wary village when he uncovers the suspicious disappearance of a young girl that no one wants to talk about. As he digs further into the history of all concerned, he finds some connections that may be explosive to his superior, the cranky Bowles. There is a threat against Rutledge''s life with warnings left where he least expects it. His heart is back in Dartmoor until the mysterious and psychic Mrs. Channing arrives on the scene. Will she be the one to discover Hamish''s existence? This latest installment has to be one of the best in the series.

Age Suitability

Add Age Suitability

There are no age suitabilities for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number


Subject Headings


Find it at GSPL

To Top