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A Chief Inspector Barnaby Mystery
By Caroline Graham

St. Martin's Minotaur, 2001
Paperback ($6.50)
ISBN: 0312977107

Reviewed by Cherie Jung

I'm certainly glad that I started watching the Midsomer Murders TV series on A&E cable then purchased the DVD sets before I started reading the novels written by Caroline Graham which the DVD series is based on. To my dismay, I find that I don't like the literary Chief Inspector Barnaby or Sergeant Troy as much as I enjoy the TV characters or more precisely, the way the actors portray the characters in the film version.

Still, despite not liking the written characters, I do still read the books. I enjoy a mystery where the nastiest husband in the village ends up dead, or his mean-spirited wife ends up dead, or whomever is most deserving, ends up dead.

In A PLACE OF SAFETY, we have a village that is anything but safe. We have blackmail, murder, a loveless marriage, creeping about, and more murder. Delicious. The nasties in this village are particularly nasty and very memorable. You won't soon forget them or their deeds. To say more would spoil the fun.

True to many of the books in this series, A PLACE OF SAFETY is a cozy with a substantial body count. Or, if you prefer, a police procedural that takes the reader inside the dynamics of an English village with lots of dark secrets hidden away.

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