Harry Barnett is back, and this time an innocent jaunt into
the past turns into a puzzle that will change the way he
views his military career. While clearing out his mother's
house after her death, Harry happens upon two old RAF
comrades who invite him to a Scottish castle where they had
all been stationed on a research project. Curious to see
his buddies and trying to avoid cleaning out the house,
Harry agrees to go.
The gathering is quickly thrown into melancholy when one
man dies on the train on the way to the reunion. Although
it's suggested the death was a suicide, Harry is disturbed
by a conversation he had with the man just before he died.
More deaths occur and it becomes clear that Harry and his
former business partner, Barry, are being tapped as lead
suspects. The two men must travel back 50 years in their
memories and find out what really happened when they were
involved in the RAF research project. What they discover
will guide them to a killer -- hopefully before he claims
one or both of their lives.
The dark, weighted writing of Robert Goddard is a
joyous journey into British literature. Is it possible the
book itself is heavier than normal because of the content?
I'm a fan of all three Harry Barnett books. Goddard creates
a taut plot that weaves the reader into the pages until,
gasping, we pull ourselves out at the end -- drained and
entranced. Excellent read.
In the spellbinding new mystery by the master of “the
clever twist,” a group of ex-RAF comrades journey to a
Scottish castle for a reunion. But by the time they reach
their destination, two of them are dead.
Barnett is leading a contented life in Vancouver with his
wife and daughter when he is brought back to England by
the death of his mother. He intends to spend just a few
days sorting out her affairs when a chance meeting he will
regret for the rest of his life makes him change his
plans. Two old acquaintances from his National Service
days track Harry down to his mother’s house — the last
address they had for him. A lavish reunion has been
organized to mark the fiftieth anniversary of their RAF
days. Harry decides to go.
During the war, Harry
and his fellow RAF conscripts spent three months in a
Scottish castle where they acted as guinea pigs in a
psychological experiment. The reunion is to take place in
the same castle. It will be a chance to see friends,
settle old scores and lay a few ghosts to rest.
party begins on the train up to Aberdeen, until the
apparent suicide of one of their number shatters the
holiday atmosphere. Their arrival in Scotland seems under
a cloud, and when another comrade dies soon after their
arrival, Harry is gripped by a sense of foreboding. As
well, the recollections of the old comrades of their time
in the castle are frighteningly different, and unexplained
events from 1955 still haunt them. As Harry tries to solve
the mystery of what really happened fifty years ago, he
uncovers an extraordinary secret that convinces him he
will never leave the castle alive.