Today I have a review of The Black Ascot, the 21st book in the Ian Rutledge series, by the prolific mother/son team of Charles Todd, now available from William Morrow! Thank you to William Morrow for the invitation to read and review this book.
The Black Ascot is the 21st installment in the Inspector Ian Rutledge series by beloved author duo (mother and son), Charles Todd. For a series to have this lasting power, it has to be good, and in my eyes, it’s pure gold. Not to mention, the authors also have another beloved series devoted to Bess Crawford.
In The Black Ascot, Ian Rutledge, working for Scotland Yard, is on the hunt for an elusive killer. What spawns the hunt is a tip from a former convict. These are always suspicious for you never know the underlying motives, but Rutledge is intrigued enough to report it back to his supervisor.
The killer is none other than Alan Barrington, who has been on the lam for over ten years. The Black Ascot is a famous royal horserace occurring in 1910 in tribute to the late King Edward VII. Barrington is suspected of a horrific murder during Black Ascot. Giving the tip legs is the fact that Barrington seems to have returned to England, so Scotland Yard needs to nab him while they can.
Rutledge researches meticulously as only he can deliberately going piece-by-piece through the original charges and documents. Just as he’s getting closer to finding Barrington, his shell shock resurfaces and brings his sanity into doubt.
Rutledge realizes in order to heal himself he has to move forward and that means with finding Barrington, too. Is Barrington still in England to find?
Overall, The Black Ascot is another solid endeavor in this well-loved series. Tackling the important topic of shell shock/PTSD for Rutledge added interest and made our beloved main character more fallible and lovable at the same time. There is a slam-bang ending here you simply have to experience for yourself. Thank you to Charles Todd for baring Rutledge to us in this way and for shining a light on such an important topic of the time and currently as well.
I received a complimentary copy. All opinions are my own.
Scotland Yard’s Ian Rutledge seeks a killer who has eluded Scotland Yard for years in this next installment of the acclaimed New York Times bestselling series.
An astonishing tip from a grateful ex-convict seems implausible—but Inspector Ian Rutledge is intrigued and brings it to his superior at Scotland Yard. Alan Barrington, who has evaded capture for ten years, is the suspect in an appalling murder during Black Ascot, the famous 1910 royal horserace honoring the late King Edward VII. His disappearance began a manhunt that consumed Britain for a decade. Now it appears that Barrington has returned to England, giving the Yard a last chance to retrieve its reputation and see justice done. Rutledge is put in charge of a quiet search under cover of a routine review of a cold case.
Meticulously retracing the original inquiry, Rutledge begins to know Alan Barrington well, delving into relationships and secrets that hadn’t surfaced in 1910. But is he too close to finding his man? His sanity is suddenly brought into question by a shocking turn of events. His sister Frances, Melinda Crawford, and Dr. Fleming stand by him, but there is no greater shame than shell shock. Questioning himself, he realizes that he cannot look back. The only way to save his career—much less his sanity—is to find Alan Barrington and bring him to justice. But is this elusive murderer still in England?
Have you read The Black Ascot, or is it on your TBR? Have you read any of the Charles Todd books? Happy Reading! ~ Jennifer THR