Review: A Finer End by Deborah Crombie



A Finer End
by Deborah Crombie
Series: Duncan Kincaid / Gemma James series, Book 7
Genre: Mystery
Published by Bantam Books, 2001
Library Book
325 pages
Grade: B+
Synopsis: When Duncan Kincaid’s cousin calls from Glastonbury to ask for help on an unusual matter, Duncan welcomes the chance to spend a relaxing weekend away from London with Gemma. But Glastonbury’s ancient past soon reveals a dark and bloody secret which is about to shatter the calm of the present day.

Once outside, she stood her bike upright, then paused. There was a sharpness to the air that matched the clarity of the magenta sky above the Tor, and from somewhere she could have sworn she heard the faint thread of pipes. She felt again the temporal dislocation that Glastonbury sometimes engendered, as if the centuries had eased their boundaries and bled into one another.


“You all right?”

“The music . . .”

“Lovely, wasn’t it? Good choir at St. John’s” He whistled under his breath. “I promised the Major we’d buy him a drink. The Freemason’s arm, you think? It’s a nice enough evening to sit outside.”

Gemma gazed at him in consternation. Tall, slender, his unruly chestnut hair falling over his forehead, looking down at her with an expression of interested inquiry–he made a picture of the perfect sensitive man. So why did she suddenly feel they might as well be from different planets?

How could he take such music for granted? Had he not felt that the glory of it was almost beyond bearing? The gap between their perceptions seemed immense.


  • Very different mystery than others I’ve read so far in this series. Not the typical police procedural!
  • A-finer-end-map
    Endpaper in A Finer End–Glastonbury map by Laura Hartman Maestro

    I didn’t figure out the mystery in this book. There are many threads and characters. Very entertaining and interesting.

  • We find out more about Duncan and Gemma. They have more problems to overcome and no longer work together. Gemma is promoted at the beginning of this book and given a new assignment. This puts added strain on their relationship. They already have other problems from past books–the murder of Duncan’s ex-wife, Duncan’s son and the fact they both are divorced and Gemma is especially shy about a permanent relationship.
  • Music plays a big part in this book. I really like how Gemma is discovering her innate love of music.
  • Such an interesting book. I love all the history about Glastonbury and the maps which have started showing up in the books. The history in Ms. Crombie’s books have me searching the internet to find out more about the setting and historical aspects.
  • This book is mystical in many places. That fits in the setting of Glastonbury.
  • Jack Montfort, is the reason Gemma and Duncan go to Glastonbury. Jack is an architect with both feet on the ground, but when he starts automatic writing and gathers a group of people around him who hope to figure out the why and what of the authomatic writing other mysteries. secrets and dangers begin to appear.
  • The group around Jack all have their own secrets and some don’t seem very trustworthy.
  • In all the books I’ve read so far in this series history and past actions are very important in the stories. This book continues with that pattern, but even more so.


  • I had trouble keeping up with the characters in the first part of the book. A lot of people were introduced in a short period of time. That made the beginning of the book a little slow. I persevered and was soon hooked!

And a few thoughts . . .

  • Another excellent book in this series.

Have you read this book? How did you like it?

  • 2014 Goodreads Challenge (Hoping to read 100 books this year)