Review: Brutal Terminations

Brutal Terminations by Cherith Baldry
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Blurb from Goodreads:

When a female skeleton is unearthed by workmen digging the foundations for a library extension at St Clement’s College, Gawaine St Clair, a reluctant amateur detective and former undergraduate of the college, is called in to investigate. Arriving in Oxford, Gawaine is informed that the body had been buried for 30 years, and the woman had been pregnant at the time of her death. Gawaine also discovers that a don, Richard Templeman, is missing, to be later found dead.

Gawaine’s suspicions fall on men who were in college thirty years before, and are still there: Stephen Verner, who was then about to marry a socially advantageous woman; Father Gerard, the celibate college chaplain; Heatherington, the creepy head porter; Colonel Morrison, the Bursar, who appears to have no motive; Dr Porteus, whose Fellowship depended on his unmarried status.

A letter gives Gawaine clues to the identity of the woman and her lover, and he finally finds the killer. But is he right? And will he survive long enough to prove it?


This book had got me interested from the blurb but as I started reading it, it wasn't as I had expected. The cover is nice and mysterious and goes with the theme. The book uses quotes at beginning of chapters which was nice if you are a quote person, overall gives a nice theme to it. The mystery was sort of building, but at the same time I had a hard time getting into the story.

If you are someone who cherishes reading old English then this book might suit your taste. But I didn't find story gripping as such. I had to take a few minutes here and there in midst to get back to book. Being a mystery lover it was weird for me, personally I don't like when I need to check dictionary often while reading, it hampers the whole experience. That's just me though, if you are someone who loves old world references along with quoting then you might enjoy the writing style.

A few things that I liked about the book were the narration and writing style. If you are an old school English lover and like reading that kind of writing style then you'd surely love it. But if you are someone who is adapted to YA and modern writing style then you might not like it. Apart from that as much as old world references are interesting but they start getting annoying when you have to look up into a dictionary several times while reading. But that's totally personal opinion. I had a hard time getting into the story though.

The characters didn't feel compelling enough, like the story gave me a feel like something is going on that's all. I didn't know what and why? Since I keep my reviews spoiler free I am not gonna give out the story. You'd need to check out the book yourself if this this book has got your curious. On my part the story could've been much better. but I'd keep it at 3 stars for nice narration and interesting cover. I feel this book can be a good assignment read for literature class. This book can be a hit or miss for you.

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