Death Mask, Paperback Book
4.5 out of 5 (1 rating)


When the victim of a violent gang rape accuses five premier sportsmen of the attack, she has no idea that her suffering has only just begun ...It's a scandal that rocks a nation of sports fans.

But, in spite of a huge amount of evidence, no one seems to believe her. So when Dr Anya Crichton, a forensic expert in sexual assault, is asked to become involved by the team managers, she simply can't say no. But as she investigates further, Anya realises that the scandals, violence and abuses run much deeper, and much further into the past than she could ever have imagined. And it's down to her to find out exactly who's responsible.

Before it happens again.


  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton General Division
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Crime & mystery
  • ISBN: 9780340919088

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DEATH MASK takes forensic physician Dr Anya Crichton to New York to work with American footballers on a subject dear to her heart: violence, sexual abuse, and drug abuse, in high profile sportsmen. The content of the novel makes it obvious that it is a subject dear to the author's heart as well. I think inspiration for the novel probably came from the headline grabbing cases of sex scandals in Australian rugby (see the link below), but such cases are never far from the limelight in high profile football codes world over. Promoters of sports like American football and Australian Rugby, Australian Rules, and soccer, want to promote the sports as wholesome and for family consumption, their players as role models, but the Australian codes as well as the American ones have had to take preventative action to protect their images and to ensure their players understand the implications of their actions.I think Fox was fearful that her readers would not understand the widespread nature or seriousness of the problem, nor would they have the technical knowledge of what the problem involved. The result has been some rather extensive didactic passages in the novel. It was almost as if she couldn't allow her knowledge or her research go to waste: on rape in sport, drugs in sport, on the rules of American football, on the effects of violent impacts on the brain, even on sights to see in New York.I think Fox fleshes out more on Anya Crichton than I remember from earlier novels, particularly the disappearance of her younger sister Miriam at an Aussie Rules football match (based I think on the Kirsty Gordon/Joanne Ratcliffe case, and before that the disappearance of the Beaumont children).In New York Anya Crichton teams up with investigator Ethan Rye (nicknamed "Catcher") to investigate a gang rape carried by some high profile footballers, and they make a very good team. DEATH MASK leaves the path open for another novel where Anya will work with Ethan.In a sense COLD GRAVE due to be published in August 2012 is a sequel to DEATH MASK.

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