Book Review | In the Blood by Steve Robinson


In the Blood is a first novel for Steve Robinson, and the first book in the Genealogical Crime Mystery series featuring the protagonist, Jefferson Tayte, as a professional genealogist. It is available in both paperback and Kindle format and was published in June 2011.

When professional genealogist Jefferson Tayte accepts an assignment from Walter Sloane to research his Fairborne ancestors, he quickly finds himself in the middle of a family mystery set in 1783 on the picturesque banks of the Helford river in Cornwall, England. But JT is not the only one with an interest in what happened to James Fairborne’s wife Eleanor and their children, and he swiftly finds that his research into the past has put him in great danger in the present!

Although Steve Robinson is not a genealogist himself, he has done some excellent research on how a professional would approach a client’s family history project and very plausibly portrays the resources and methodologies that would be used. Jefferson Tayte is all the professional genealogists I’ve ever known, combined into one very believable character. An experienced researcher, he ironically has been unable to trace his own family history, despite years of trying to uncover his roots. As the story begins, we see JT at his most vulnerable as he struggles to overcome his fear of flying, but we quickly find much to admire in him as he begins to follow the clues to unravel the centuries old mystery of the Fairborne family.

  • Plot 95 %
  • Characters 100 %
  • Setting 90 %

In the Blood is an excellent crime thriller, with plenty of twists and turns. It has excitement, suspense, plenty of action, and even a hit of romance. Once you start reading it, you won't be able to put it down. I'm looking forward already to the next book in this series!

95% Awesome

Barbara J Starmans is a social historian, freelance writer and obsessed genealogist living in Richmond Hill, Ontario, Canada and has been doing genealogical research for the past 35 years. She is a graduate of the National Institute for Genealogical Studies in Toronto, Canada with professional learning certificates in General Methodology and in English Records and recently become an instructor for them with an intermediate course on Social History.

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