Birthright – Book Review

Author: Nora Roberts

ISBN: 978-0-7499-4042-3


At a housing construction site, in the small town community of Woodsboro , a worker unexpectedly digs up some human bones. This causes the Antietam Creek Project to come to a sudden halt. It is said that the plot holds that part of the land in dread because of the haunted pond called Simon’s Hole. The bones are found to be more than 5000 years old. Lana Campbell, a widower with a son, a lawyer and member of Historical Preservation Society, releases a court order to stop further construction on the site. First to arrive on the scene is the famous archeologist Dr. Callie Dunbrook. She brings in many other university grads and undergrads to dig on the site, including renowned anthropologist and Callie’s irritating but irresistible ex-husband, Jake Graystone. Forced to work together on the project, Callie and Jake set aside their mutual differences temporarily, and intend to discover what the bones of people long gone have to say. Since a lot of people’s living depends on the construction site they don’t want these archaeologists on the site and hence decide to make life hell for them.

Little does Callie know that her passion for finding out the secrets of the dead is on the verge of becoming a mission of finding out answers to the questions of her own past. An unknown and distraught woman, Suzanne Cullen, turns up at her motel telling her that Callie is her long lost daughter. This turns Callie’s life upside down and though she is sure that she was not adopted she still insists on finding the truth because it’s her birthright. Jake acts as the strongest and only support in Callie’s mission of unravelling the secrets of her birth,which actually makes them realize that their divorce was a biggest mistake that they made in their relationship. While they are at it and digging the site, the people in their team start dying, one by one.

Is someone out to sabotage the work of the archaeologists or are there supernatural forces at work and haunting the ground?

Is Suzanne Cullen telling the truth?

‘Birthright’ is a superb work by Nora. This was the first time I picked her book and I’m sure I’m going to pick her other works. The novel takes you through lot of twists and turns of the puzzle and in the meanwhile through the relationships that are entangled in love, emotions and questions. How the families come together and the role of each family member is given fair importance and justice. All characters are perfectly etched out. Everything is in place as a suspense thriller. Not as stupendous as an Agatha Christie, I was still trying hard to guess the culprit, though I could tie up a few ends and could come up with a hypothesis. I guess after forty odd Agatha Christie’s that’s the least I should be able to do. But still it’s a very good read.

My rating for this book is 3/5.

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