17 July, 2017

Damn his blood : being a true and detailed history of the most barbarous and inhumane murder at Oddingley and the quick and awful retribution / Peter Moore (book)

When we think of 18th century England, we think of the Brontes, Jane Austin, Thomas Hardy and others. Demure drawing-rooms and afternoon teas, balls, coaches and an idyllic rural life peopled by dimpled dairymaids and bucolic farmers.

Here we have the portrayal of the rural working-class as they lived and worked in a small English village. The farmers and the landowners, the parson and all the working-class servants, farm-hands, visiting tradesmen and others.

It's a gripping and realistic portrait of the relationships in a small rural community and the tensions which can arise living so close to each other. The circumstances of the murder and its aftermath make fascinating reading, and the author brings the characters very much to life.

The murders featured in the book were notorious at the time and even now the local inn has a sign telling visitors the story and what happened.

Recommended if you fancy a true story, with a gripping yarn and a whodunit, with a twist at the end which shows us who the murderer was and why.
Reviewed by Clare K. Massey Library

Clare K works at Massey Library in West Auckland. She believes that there is nothing you can't learn from a book, and the more you know the more you grow.

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