Inspector Ian Rutledge Series
I first learned about this series when book #20 was released this year. I added that book to my Audible wishlist and picked up book number one to see if the sample I had listened to was worth diving into. It was.
The series is written by a mother/son writing team that goes by the name of Charles Todd.
The series is set in the years after World War I. Scotland Yard Inspector Ian Rutledge is a survivor (barely) with post traumatic stress syndrome (PTSD) which exhibit itself in the manifestation of the spirit of one of the men who served under him in France.
The setting is one that I do not normally tend toward. When I first thought about this series, I reminded myself that I enjoyed Downton Abbey which covered pretty much the same period and area of England.
That seemed to provide a frame of reference that allowed me to slide into what is a typical British character driven mystery. Think Masterpiece Mystery and you get the idea.
The characters are well developed and interesting. Rutledge himself is quite a complicated mess – and that is without the inclusion of his shadow. I have to think it difficult to deal with the public opinion of PTSD (negative) along with the reality of living with it (complicated).
The stories themselves are very well written. I would tend to align them with Agatha Christie. There is a similar complicated simplicity to them. The stories themselves are not simple, there are some very complicated themes with characters that have many shades of grey.
I admit I listened to the first three in the series, then jumped to number twenty – in part to move forward with the series and in part to get #20 off my wishlist. 🙂 Totally worth it!
I would definitely recommend starting with #1 because it provides the groundwork you will need to understand Rutledge’s journey. After that… I am contemplating catching up before the next new one comes out.