The Shadowy Horses is a modern-day historical fiction mystery set in north-western Scotland. It takes place mostly at an archaeological dig which, in addition to the mysterious title, was a huge draw for me. When friend Adrian Sutton-Clarke encourages archaeologist Verity Grey to leave London to interview for a job with eccentric archaeologist Peter Quinnelle, she is drawn by her sense of adventure and the opportunity to be involved in an exciting new venture. When she arrives at Quinnelle’s remote site, she is surprised and thrilled to learn that he believes he has found the burial site of the lost Ninth Roman Legion.
Her first indication that something might be off is when she is settling down her first night at Rose Cottage and Peter’s tomcat, Murphy, hisses at something unseen outside her window. Before long, Verity is involved in second sight, fabricated evidence, sabotage, romance, and a ghostly Roman sentinel who is either protecting the burial site from the intruders or protecting some of the intruders from an unknown danger.
I especially enjoyed the archaeological dig activity and descriptions, the state-of-the-art lab set up in the former stables, and all the historical information thrown in. Kearsley is a former archaeologist herself and the authenticity of her writing is obvious. The descriptions of the Scottish moors and the Scottish country way of life were interesting and fun. I surprised myself by enjoying the paranormal parts of the story, too, and am hoping for a follow-up of Robbie’s character in another book by Kearsley. This is the first book I’ve read by Susanna Kearsley but she has a more than a dozen to her credit so chances are I’ll be looking to read another. * * * * 1/2
Other books by Susanna Kearsley:
A Desperate Fortune
The Rose Garden
The Winter Sea
Every Secret Thing
Season of Storms
Named of the Dragon
The Splendour Falls