All of us who have been eagerly awaiting the sequel to that very dramatic first book will have been wondering whether the author would pull off a second story with the aplomb shown in the earlier one; I'm so glad to tell you that he does.
The novel begins with the discovery of a body in a peat bog on the Hebridean island, but contrary to first expectations the corpse has not been there for thousands of years - this is a comparatively recent death, a murder, and DNA evidence links the remains to an elderly islander who is suffering from dementia. Detective Fin Macleod is back on Lewis having left the police force and his Edinburgh life behind him. What he cannot jettison, though, are his memories, those of recent tragic events, and other painful ones from further back, ones peopled by the very friends and neighbours he has returned to in his small community in the north of the island.
When Fin is called in in an unofficial capacity to help ascertain the identity of the murder victim and that of his living near-relation who cannot now be who he seems, his interest in the case will turn out to be more than just professional. As the mystery is unravelled, so old scores will be settled, and here's where Peter May shows his skill with an intricate plot and with the unfolding narrative, for as the action moves back and fore from the present day islands to the Edinburgh of the 1950s (click here for more on the locations), it's a neat tale he tells and one which will have you on the very edge of your seat.
Roll on volume 3, say I, and if you go to the publisher's website and sign up you'll get an extract of that book, The Chess Men, ahead of its autumn release. I'm at the head of the queue.