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The Only Security by Jessica Mann

'Sparkling, sardonic and refreshingly original - a thoroughly accomplished piece.í Edmund Crispin, The Sunday Times

Academic skulduggery plays a large part in Jessica Mannís third crime novel, set in a Cornish university, but the result is psychological suspense rather than donnish detection.

Thea Crawford is the newly-appointed Professor of Archaeology at the University of Buriton. Her husband is abroad, leaving her to pursue her career with liberated enthusiasm, but as soon as she arrives she is faced with immediate difficulties in her own department and is drawn into a series of bizarre and sinister events.

Mediaeval skeletons and twentieth-century corpses, the discovery of a rare and precious object, conflicting archaeological attitudes and some sharply observed characters add up to a fascinating novel of subtlety, wit and intrigue.