The structure of the Roth Trilogy is unusual in that it is composed of interlocking stories but each novel is self-contained and may be read independently of the others. The first novel, The Four Last Things, is set in the 1990s. The second, The Judgement Of Strangers, moves back to 1970, and the third, The Office Of The Dead, to 1958.
It is 1970. David Byfield, a widowed parish priest with a dark past, brings home a new wife to Roth. Soon the murders and blasphemies begin. But does the responsibility lie in the present or the past? And can Byfield, a prisoner of his own passion, break through to the truth before the final tragedy destroys what he most cherishes?
©1998 Andrew Taylor;
This is the second part of Andrew Taylor's trilogy located around a village called Roth and spanning over 40 years in time. Although this part stands alone as an excellent and compelling story I think you'd get more out of it if you'd heard 'The Office of the Dead' first as it sets the scene for the 'The Judgement of Strangers' and, in the latter, there are oblique references to the past that will be much clearer if you know the back story.
"The Judgement of Strangers"
This is an interesting novel, in that it explores some dark themes while keeping a rather spritely pace and worldview.
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