Sunday, September 05, 2010

Book Review - The Inheritance by Simon Tolkien

The Inheritance
Simon Tolkien
Minotaur Books, 2010
336 pages


How can you review a book by Simon Tolkien without comparing him to his more famous grandfather, J.R.R. Tolkien? You can’t. So I won’t. And now that I’ve got the obligatory reference out of the way and you know of the relationship I can get on with my review.

The Inheritance is, in my estimation, a very good murder mystery. The World War II back story is intriguing and interesting and the characters are, for the most part, believable and worth investing time in. While the mystery, which borders on being a locked-room-murder, is similar to others of the genre and is well-executed Tolkien really shines when he gets into the politics, intrigue, and tension of the court room. The story is a complex mystery filled with courtroom drama and believable well-researched history and I found every aspects of the story truly enjoyable. From the quest for the missing religious artifact to the massacre of an entire village during World War II to the mechanics of corporal punishment in England in 1959 and by combining elements of the classic whodunit with those of the court room thriller I found The Inheritance an entertaining and interesting read.

3 stars out of 5

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