Today I am delighted to share my thoughts on The Buried, the latest novel by Sharon Bolton and to wish the author a very happy publication day. This is the long awaited follow up to The Craftsman, a book I really enjoyed. Here’s what the new book is all about:
About the Book
AN OLD ENEMY IS LAID TO REST . . . AND A NEW CRIME IS DISCOVERED
Florence Lovelady, the most senior serving policewoman in Britain, visits convicted serial killer Larry Glassbrook in prison. Larry is coming to the end of his life but has one last task for Florence: to learn the identity of the remains discovered at children’s home Black Moss Manor. The town Florence escaped narrowly with her life still holds many secrets. Will she finally learn the truth? Or will time run out for her first?
The latest Florence Lovelady thriller, set shortly after the bestselling first novel The Craftsman in the chilling, new series from Richard and Judy bestseller Sharon Bolton
When is a sequel not a sequel? When it’s also a prequel. Sort of … The Buried by Sharon Bolton, probably falls somewhere between the two, largely because of the dual timeline of both books, the two stories intertwined and intersecting, so much so that I would say you most certainly ought to read The Craftsman first if you haven’t already. You may even want to have a quick re-read of the book too as, whilst the author gives sufficient recap for this to stand alone as story, there is some merit in the memories of book one being fresh in the mind.
The Buried goes some way to explaining why Florence Lovelady was so adamant she needed to return to Sabden, and it wasn’t simply to see Larry Glassbrook laid to rest. There is something amiss in Sabden, something far beyond the notorious events of 1969. With unidentified remains being found, and Florence certain she has found a clear case of cover-up, there is no question of her not returning to the home of her first posting, even though those who read book one know just how dangerous that turned out to be.
What I really like about these books is the way in which Sharon Bolton has woven the local legend of Pendle Hill into the story, but done so in a way in which the more ‘mythical’ aspects of the case are there as a backdrop rather than sitting front and centre as the main theme of the story. Witchcraft informs the story, but the motives behind the heinous acts in this book are far more straightforward and altogether ‘human’.
I really liked the way that the author has chosen to build the two stories around each other. The Buried acts as both a prequel and sequel to Florence’s 1999 journey back to Sabden, and a sequel to the events of the summer of 1969. In that sense there are many characters we are already aware of, some of whom appear in ways you might not be expecting. Everything felt natural, even the more unusual scenes of the book, and whilst it took a little time for me to remember everything that occurred (see advice in paragraph one), as soon as I found my flow, everything came flooding back you can see how beautifully the whole thing works.
This can be a tough book to read, touching on some very difficult subjects, including a elements of child abuse, murder, obviously, and certainly an amount of prejudice, but that is better understood when reading the book. All of it is handled in a sensitive way, the author framing the story in such a way that it will elicit an array of emotions. From anger to sadness, and with an overwhelming need to see justice done, I really found myself echoing Florence’s emotions as I read, a tribute to how well the author has constructed the story.
Whilst this is not an action packed novel, the majority of action being based heavily in the past in a town with a very traditional way of life, it is not without its tension and moments of high suspense. There is an undulating sense of threat from the very start of the novel, and sometimes it is hard to see just where the real danger is coming from. Towards the end of the book the pacing really picks up and it is hard to see just how Florence can survive this final investigation into Sabden’s past and the powerful individuals who use dark forces to govern the fortunes of the town.
Dark, atmospheric, and riddled with a chilling tension, I think fans of The Craftsman and going to love this sequel and realise that the wait has definitely been worth it.
About the Author
Sharon (formerly S J) Bolton grew up in a cotton-mill town in Lancashire and had an eclectic early career in marketing and public relations. She gave it up in 2000 to become a mother and a writer.
Her first novel, Sacrifice, was voted Best New Read by Amazon.uk, whilst her second, Awakening, won the 2010 Mary Higgins Clark Award (part of the prestigious Edgars) in the US. She has been shortlisted for the CWA Gold Dagger, the Theakston’s Prize for Best Thriller, the International Thriller Writers’ Best First Novel award, the Prix Du Polar in France and the Martin Beck award in Sweden.
3 thoughts on “The Buried by Sharon Bolton”
I really enjoy this author Jen, and need to have a catch up on her books. Great review. I’m looking forward to this. ❤📚
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Thank you. I’ve only read some of her more recent titles but definitely enjoying them. Will have to catch up as I do have a number of her earlier titles in book book format. (Somewhere in my piles …)
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