The Age of Treachery

Written by Gavin Scott

Review written by Stephen Thornley

An avid reader, Stephen's knowledge of Crime Fiction is fairly extensive, with The Golden Age is his greatest interest.

The Age of Treachery
Titan Books
RRP: £7.99
Released: April 12 2016

It is 1946, WWII has at last ended, but who is winning the peace. In Britain it is a struggle. The rebuilding of the country has hardly started, everything is still rationed, in fact there are shortages that are more acute now, than during the war.

In Oxford in January the snow covers the classical buildings of the colleges. Duncan Forrester has returned to Barnard College, from his wartime exploits with the Special Operations Executive or SOE for short, as a Junior Fellow in Ancient History.

Forrester is hoping to get funding for a return trip to Crete, where he spent time during the war, to explore ancient writings found in a cave on the island. But, his energies are soon diverted towards investigating a murder when a colleague is killed during a recital of an old Norse saga.

David Lyall, a young, handsome and successful fellow of Barnard is found below the broken window of the Senior Tutor's rooms. It appears he had been stabbed before being pushed out of the window.

It soon becomes known that Lyall was in a relationship with the Senior Tutor's wife. But it appears he was also hated by a number of his colleagues, not to mention old lovers. The Police Inspector Barber decides all evidence points to the Senior Tutor, Gordon Clark, and he is arrested.

Forrester knows that his friend Clark would not kill Lyall. He now realises that unless he can find the killer his friend will face trial and possible execution.

Once he begins the investigation Forrester's leads take him from Oxford to London to occupied Germany and Norway. There's espionage, betrayal, political intrigue and satanic rites bound up in this masterful mystery.

Scott is adept at creating suspense and his storytelling is engrossing. Combined with great action, exciting and thrilling situations this first adventure is a perfect start.

The atmosphere of post-war privations, the drab and cold not to mention the public transport deficiencies are really well depicted. Scott's Forrester is an engaging character with intelligence, insight and an athletic agility that helps him to survive in very tricky places. I look forward to the next thrilling episode.


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