The Book of Killowen

book of killowen cover image The Book of Killowen

by Erin Hart
Hardcover, 352 pages

What sort of book is worth a man's life? After a year away from working in the field, archaeologist Cormac Maguire and pathologist Nora Gavin are back in the bogs, investigating a ninth-century body found buried in the trunk of a car. They discover that the ancient corpse is not alone. Pinned beneath it is the body of Benedict Kavanagh, missing for mere months and familiar to television viewers as a philosopher who enjoyed destroying his opponents in debate. Both men were viciously murdered, but centuries apart, so how did they end up buried together in the bog?

This novel by Minnesota author, Erin Hart, is rooted in medieval Ireland and rich in the particulars of monastic manuscripts: how “the gallbladders of eels” and cooking down “gallnuts” make inks are just a few examples. All of this history serves the novel’s suspense and adds to the book’s splendor.