Bolitho, Janie - 'Buried in Cornwall'
BURIED IN CORNWALL is the third in Janie Bolitho's series featuring artist and amateur sleuth Rose Trevelyan and set in Cornwall. The first three books in the series have been re-issued by Allison & Busby ten years after the author's death.
At the beginning of the book, Rose is embarrassed, as she has seemingly raised a false alarm, after hearing female screams near the isolated ruins of a former mine engine-house that is the subject of her latest painting. Her on-off boyfriend, policeman Jack Pearce is initially furious at Rose's mistake, but then starts to take her fears more seriously.
Events take a more sinister turn, when after a gallery show for one of Rose's friends, the successful artist Stella Jackson, a young woman, Jenny, disappears, having made a drunken attempt to reunite with an ex-boyfriend. Jenny was an artist's model and impoverished hanger-on to the Cornish arts community, having recently split from wealthy artist Nick due to her infidelities. As Rose had recently started having some dinner dates with Nick, both Nick and Rose are treated as potential suspects, and Rose starts to wonder just how trustworthy her new friends are.
BURIED IN CORNWALL is a pleasant and enjoyable cosy, with a believable and attractive protagonist, Rose, and a nice sense of local atmosphere. The plot and unravelling of the mystery are slightly perfunctory at times - the real strength of this book is the depiction of place and of the relationships and behaviour of the local arts and crafts fraternity. This series would be ideal summer holiday reading, especially for those planning a trip to the Penzance and St Ives area.
Laura Root, England