View Full Version : Barbara Vine - The Blood Doctor

24-01-2009, 3:23 AM
Fiction, and not one of her best-received novels, but one that I think would be so appreciated and enjoyed by most family history researchers.

Along with quite a few people who reviewed it on Amazon (beware spoilers!) I suspected the horrible secret at an early stage but for me that didn't make the book any less readable, moving and chilling.

Has anyone else here read this, or other novels to do with family research?


24-01-2009, 11:11 AM
I am currently reading 'The Blood Detective' by Dan Waddell author of 'Who Do You Think You Are', and I must say it is brilliant, with very descriptive settings, it makes you feel like you are there trying to solve the crimes with him, and knowing the difficulties he faces in finding the criminal. Everything I want to say about this book will give it's plot away, so I wont say anymore other than that it is a very good read and I cannot wait to see what the ending has in store. |book2|

25-01-2009, 12:24 PM
I have also read 'The Blood Doctor' and like you, Feen, found it thoroughly enjoyable. Just after it, I read another book, in a similar vein, called 'The Shape of Sand,' written by Marjorie Eccles. The book moves back and forth between the 'present' (post-war 1940s), and the early 1900s, to reveal a long-hidden family secret, and was also an excellent read.

25-01-2009, 3:37 PM

I have recently read Blood Detective.....just the book for us addicts and he is wring another cant wait


01-02-2009, 12:20 AM
Thanks for the recommendation of The Shape of Sand and the Blood Detective - they sound great and are definitely on my (huge) to be read list! Tinker I'm glad you enjoyed the Blood Doctor too :).


02-02-2009, 11:09 AM
This hobby of ours does invade our lives, doesn't it?!

05-02-2009, 12:02 PM
Now that you mention it, I realise that many of Barbara Vine/Ruth Rendell's books concern family secrets and family history. In particular, "Asta's Book" and "The Chimney Sweeper's Boy" come to mind.

Some other novels that might be of interest:- "Out of the Blackout" by Robert Barnard concerns an evacuated boy who cannot be returned to London after the war because nobody knows where he came from. When he grows up he sets out to discover who he is and gradually pieces together his shocking family history.

"The Necropolis Railway" by Andrew Martin would be of interest to anyone who has railway ancestors, it is very evocative of the period and has detailed descriptions of working on steam locomotives and life in the engine sheds at Nine Elms. The operation of the necropolis railway that took funeral parties to Brookwood Cemetery, Woking, Surrey, having its own separate railway station at Waterloo, is described in fascinating detail.

Thank you for the recommendations, all of which I have put on my "To Read" list.

06-02-2009, 10:16 AM
I've jotted down all those titles to look out for when I'm next at the library. I've read quite a few Robert Barnard books and enjoy his stuff, but hadn't come across that particular title. I know what I'll be doing if the weather stays this cold and snowy!!!

06-02-2009, 2:55 PM
Thanks to all of you I now have a rather long reading list!!
Jenni ;)

10-09-2009, 6:06 PM
I am reading Dan Waddell's second book "Blood Atonement". It is even more gripping than his first novel.

Sadly I have to put it aside now and again as domestic chores have to be done.

10-09-2009, 6:42 PM
This hobby of ours does invade our lives, doesn't it?!

Not long ago I startes to read The Suspicions of Mr Whicher by Kate Summerscale. A few pages in I spotted a name which rang a bell-so I just had to log on and look it up (couldn't resist the urge) Sure enough,the plumber who cleared the privvy pipes (don't ask!) was the brother in law of one of my ancestors!
Terrific book by the way-and it sheds a lot of light on a recent forum topic-the effects of syphilis on infant mortality and mental illness.


11-09-2009, 2:33 PM
How amazing a coincidence is that? You'll be able to brag about the ancestor's brother-in-law appearing in print for years to come!!! (Jotted down the name of the book, by the way...our local library has a particularly good crime and mystery section, so it's bound to be there somewhere.)