The Remains of an Altar

The Remains of an Altar

4.16 (1,206 ratings by Goodreads)
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Merrily Watkins - parish priest, single mother and Deliverance Consultant - heads for the Malvern Hills to investigate an alleged paranormal dimension to a spate of road accidents. A revamped local pub has injected the valley with a shattering surge of inner-city nightlife...and drugs. When a dealer is found savagely murdered below the great earthen hillfort of Herefordshire Beacon, police wonder if it is a gangland disposal, a cry of outrage or something more sinister. Merrily and the police follow separate paths towards the truth until, on a night of frenzied violence, in a place at the center of an ancient mystery, the final, shocking connections are more

Product details

  • CD-Audio | 12 pages
  • 195 x 195 x 42mm | 476g
  • ISIS Publishing
  • ISIS Audio Books
  • Oxford, United Kingdom
  • English
  • Unabridged
  • Unabridged
  • 0753127180
  • 9780753127186

Review quote

"A first class thriller with a difference."show more

Review Text

The spirit of Edward Elgar, Britain's greatest ecclesiastical composer, haunts the byroads of the village of Wychehill.In his latest, Jane, the 17-year-old daughter of Merrily Watkins, Deliverance Consultant for the Church of England, is about to be expelled from school for upsetting the local councilmen who wish to bulldoze Coleman Meadow and erect 24 luxury estate houses on the site. Jane believes the hillside represents a worship area that harks back to the Druids and should be left intact. Complicating matters, Merrily has been called in by the local vicar, Syd Spicer, ex-SAS, to conduct an exorcism of the bicycle-pedaling ghost of Sir Edward Elgar, whose sightings have caused numerous accidents along the road. Meanwhile, Tim Loste, a local choirmaster obsessed with Elgar and goaded by a hippie-dippie occult writer, not only seems determined to recreate a Perpetual Choir that will restore balance and harmony to the earth, but may have sliced and diced a drug dealer working near an ancient sacrificial stone. Merrily's musician lover Lol provides help in analyzing Elgar's music and entree to anthropologist Alfred Watkins (no relation) and horror writer Algernon Blackwood; Jane relies on a crusty septuagenarian for aid.Rickman (The Smile of a Ghost, 2005, etc.) is equally enamored of historical scholarship, ectoplasmic sleight-of-hand and village rumor-mongering. Readers will be left with an urge to wander the English countryside while whistling Elgar's tunes. Be advised, however, that the dark doings unfold at a stately pace. (Kirkus Reviews)show more

Rating details

1,206 ratings
4.16 out of 5 stars
5 40% (481)
4 41% (492)
3 16% (192)
2 3% (34)
1 1% (7)
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