A Long Shadow (Inspector Ian Rutledge, #8)

ISBN: 006078671X
ISBN 13: 9780060786717
By: Charles Todd

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About this book

It's New Year's Eve, 1919. Scotland Yard Inspector Ian Rutledge has accompanied his sister to the home of mutual friends for dinner but gets a call from the office and has to leave. On the steps outside, he sees a brass cartridge casing, like countless others he's seen during the war. But this one has an engraving in the metal. Curious, he pockets it.Soon after, Rutledge is on the southern coast of England helping the local police capture a murderer. Work done, on a whim he drives along the cliffs overlooking the Atlantic and takes a walk out on the headland. Returning to his car, he finds another engraved cartridge casing on the driver's seat. He's been followed.The cartridge casing seems to point to the war and unfinished business there. To stay alive in the face of an unknown and unseen adversary, Rutledge is pressed to the limits of his skills. He's the prey. But who is the hunter?

Reader's Thoughts

Julie Barrett

Wow, we actually see Rutledge in London having a bit of a social life. That's a first. Hopefully that development will continue in later books. I liked the inclusion of Mrs. Channing as a potential love interest. She better be in the next book. The mystery itself was fine. I guessed who did it pretty early on in the book. I liked the book enough to keep reading the series but not enough to go gushing about it.


A LONG SHADOW (Police Procedural-England-1919) – VGTodd, Charles – 8th in seriesWilliam Morrow, 2006-HardcoverInspector Ian Rutledge, still haunted by his past and the spirit of Hamish, keeps finding cartridge shells, etched with poppies, left for him, first in London and still after he is sent to a remote country village where local Constable Hensley has been shot in the back with an arrow and left in a wood shunned by the locals. But Rutledge wonders whether the attack is revenge and associated with the disappearance of Emma Mason, a young local woman.*** This is not a slap-bang procedural, but dogged, follow-the-clues investigation by Rutledge who stands for the dead. He is a complex, realistically drawn character whose past and the impact of WWI plays a major role in his present. The supporting characters are just as strong, each with their own history woven together into an atmospheric story with excellent sense of place, very good suspense and unexpected twists at the end. Highly recommended, but start with the first book.

Julie Matern

I was impressed with the style. Having not heard of this author (mother and son duo ) I had to check to see when it was written as it certainly had the feel of an early 20th century novel.I love this genre and was not disappointed I will definitely read others from these authors.


That was one of the sadder books in this series, I think. I couldn't really believe the end. It was brilliant, too. I've been reading this series out of order and I must say I hated Mrs. Channing. I've changed my mind now. I like her a lot better after reading this.


I think I am giving this three stars because I am just a bit tired of the series. I need to see some change in Inspector Rutlidge. Hamish is getting a bit tiresome by the 8th book.


The Ian Rutledge mysteries used to be favorites of mine, so I was anxious to read A Long Shadow, which I have had on my TBR shelf for a long time. It was not bad, but neither did it hold my interest although I battled through it. It has been years since I last read one of their novels so I am not sure if it is me or the story. There were secrets and regrets that eventually were resolved and the murderer unmasked. I think it needed to be tightened up and also could use some more suspense . P.S. This was an Uncorrected Proof so the final edition may be different.


This is the second I've read in the series. The books are well written, atmospheric, and feature a detective haunted by his World War I experiences. I found it perhaps a little too similar to the first (but subsequent) one I had read--in both cases Rutledge investigates strange doings in a remote and not particularly friendly village. This time a constable ventures into an ill-famed wood (the alleged site of a Saxon massacre) and is shot in the back with an arrow. Barely surviving, he then claims someone must have dragged him there.The ending is rather improbable, but the book holds one's interest and is complicated by events that may be linked but may not be (it is ultimately revealed which).


This is an awesome mystery set in post World War I England, with a style that's reminiscent of Sherlock Holmes and Hercule Poirot stories. But Inspector Ian Rutlidge is a protagonist with an interesting twist: he hears the voice of a dead soldier in his head- a compatriot he fought with during the war. I read this book out of order, so there are a couple parts I'm a little hazy on, but the conversation between the haunted Rutlidge and taunting Hamish MacLeod keeps the book fresh and interesting. I'm thrilled to have found a new mystery series.


So far, this is the best of the series. Highly recommended.

Bookmarks Magazine

The real mystery for most critics is how the American mother-and-son team Caroline and Charles Todd, who write under the pseudonym Charles Todd, manage to penetrate so deeply into the postwar English psyche and setting. That insight is the key to the success of the Inspector Rutledge series. While the plots are plenty interesting, it is the deep shade hanging over all Todd's mysteries that sets them apart. A Long Shadow, the eighth in the series, is no exception, with its forays into the supernatural and the suspicions of small-town life. It proves another fine installment of a well-regarded series.This is an excerpt from a review published in Bookmarks magazine.

Lisa Johnson

Title: A Long Shadow (Inspector Ian Rutledge #8)Author: Charles ToddPages: 341Year: 2006Publisher: William Morrow, an imprint of HarperCollins PublishersInspector Ian Rutledge wants nothing to do with the woman performing the séance. She seems to know his secret. He can’t let anyone find out about Hamish. His war memories threaten to overwhelm him if he doesn’t escape. Respite comes in the form of a phone call from the Yard on a minor matter, but Ian uses it as an excuse to leave the dinner party. As he leaves, he makes an interesting discovery of a shell casing from a machine gun used during WWI. Wonder what it is doing outside the home of his dinner hostess?He soon is assigned a case of a former constable from the Yard being shot with a bow and arrow. Ian leaves to investigate and stays in the small village while investigating. His investigation keeps linking up with the name of Emma Mason. He finds out the young girl is missing and has been for some time with no one knowing what happened to her. The shot constable seemed unusually enamored of her, but did he have anything to do with her disappearance? Ian finds more shell casings in his travels and has the uncanny feeling he is being followed, but he can never see anyone. An attempt is made on his life, but he is no closer to finding out who is leaving the shell casings. He also is no closer to finding out who shot the constable and how Emma Mason ties in with everything. As he discovers small bits of information, he begins to put together who is responsible. Can he bring the criminal to justice before he himself is killed by the person leaving the shell casings?One thing I really like about this series is that I almost never figure out the guilty person! I so enjoy the mystery and suspense and journey to the end that I don’t even mind guessing incorrectly! This story pulled me in from the get-go. I feel like Ian is a close friend almost. I know his foibles, some of his faults, some of his fears and his strengths. I enjoy each story in the series as I get to know Ian better, how he thinks, how he goes about searching for clues and arriving at an answer as to who is guilty. There is nothing like a good British mystery and this is another feather in the cap of Charles Todd.My rating is 5 stars.Note: The opinions shared in this review are solely my responsibility. Other reviews can be read at http://seekingwithallyurheart.blogspo.... Also follow me on Twitter @lcjohnson1988, FaceBook at https://www.facebook.com/lisa.johnson...

Mary Ellen

I'm not sure why I found this more satisfying than the typical Ian Rutledge mystery (usually 3 stars), but I did. (PERHAPS because I cheated, skimmed to the end to learn whodunit, then went back & read at a normal pace - a study showed people enjoyed reading stories more when they knew how they ended!)This despite the fact that the solution to the mystery is a bit...incredible. But I liked the mix of characters, the believable setting - where despite the mysterious attack on the local constable, people still keep their doors unlocked - and the odd subplot involving someone leaving bullet casings in Rutledge's car, rooms, etc. This book also introduces a female character - Mrs. Channing - whom I hope we'll see again; some new info on Rutledge's thick-headed, resentful boss (you'd think he'd appreciate the fact that Rutledge, time and again, solves the crime and makes the department look good!) and used the Hamish factor (I refuse to call him a character!) in slightly different ways. (Any change regarding Hamish is good, IMO; after the first mystery, where it was something novel, it has become a somewhat annoying crutch and I sometimes wonder whether the authors have a settled idea of what "the voice in Rutledge's head" is supposed to be: his guilty conscience; hallucination; or a "real" spectral presence. The lack of consistency in the Hamish voice really drives me up a wall.)I look forward to seeing where the authors go from here in subsequent installments.

Pris robichaud

and Tormented Inspector, 11 Feb 2006 "I don't want you to die," she said bluntly. "I've seen enough of death and destruction. I want to hold my séances and bring back dead kings and silly jesters and the ghost of Hamlet's father. There is no harm in that and it makes people laugh. And, it keeps my mind from dwelling on what it should not be remembering. You were the soldier, Inspector but I put soldiers back together. Or tried to help others do that. I don't know which is worse." In the New Year of 1919, Scotland Yard's Inspector Rutledge has gone to a dinner party with his sister. While there he finds a spent brass cartridge casing as he is leaving the party to answer an emergent call. Then a while later he finds another. What do these spent cartridges foretell, and why do we care? Inspector Rutledge is sent by his superiors to a tiny hamlet called Dudlington. He is to investigate the attempted murder of an ex-inspector Hensley. As he arrives Inspector Rutledge feels an odd aura that he suspects is a fore warning of what is to come. The hamlet is suspicious of this Scotland Yard man and is not as welcoming as they could be. But as events unfold Inspector Ian Rutledge makes a name for himself, and the towns people begin to believe that maybe this man can solve some of the mysteries that have just begun. A young girl is missing and their Constable attacked. A Mrs Charlston, a soldier who had misfortunes, a pub owner and others who all come into play and Inspector Ian Rutledge will put the clues all together, and then find out who may be stalking him. Charles Todd is the mother/son team of Charles and Caroline Todd. Inspector Rutledge mysteries are set in post World War I England. "A Long Shadow" is the eighth novel for this team. In the previous seven novels we learn that Inspector Rutledge was in the Great War and, as many before him have, he suffered 'shell shock'. He is hiding this and it is a heavy secret. One of the most unusual aspects of this series is that Inspector Rutledge has a friend or a voice who is with him almost constantly, Hamish MacLeod. A young Scotsman who plays a large part in this Inspector's history; now and then. The Charles Todd duo's new mystery series is a must read for anyone who love English Mysteries and a thriller. A real find for me and recommended by a friend. Highly Recommended. prisrob 2-10-06


Charles Todd's series about shell-shocked Scotland Yard inspector Ian Rutledge continues to improve. In this one, we are introduced to the charming widow Meredith Channing, who may or may not be psychic. I hope she returns. There's also more information about Rutledge's evil superior, Bowles. I hope that's resolved soon. Book after book of an incompetent vengeful superior is going to get old.


Eighth in the series, this detective mystery begins at a New Year's Eve seance in London in December 1919 and takes Inspector Ian Rutledge of Scotland Yard to a quaint village in Northampton, where a former Scotland Yard employee has been shot in the back with an arrow in a supposedly haunted bit of woods. Well integrated Gothic touches include an imposing bell tower in the parish church, a mysterious woman seemingly gifted with second sight, a missing village beauty. Rutledge himself is being pursued by some tormentor who keeps leaving clues suggesting he is toying with the detective before finishing him off, and as more and more villagers start to suffer suspicious deadly accidents the tale works itself into a frenzy of a finish. This is stronger than the last installment, with a conclusion that made me want to read on.

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