It’s a Crime: Redemption; The Devil’s Eye and Claire DeWitt and the Bohemian Highway

This past month has been rather chaotic and I’ve simply run out of time and space to write full reviews of these three crime fiction titles. I didn’t want skip over them altogether though so I thought I would simply share a few thoughts in brief. Have you read any of these novels – what did you think? Feel free to link up your reviews of any of the titles in the comments.

 

Title: Redemption {Department Q #3}

Author: Jussi Adler-Olsen

Published: Penguin Au September 2013

Status: Read from September 27 to 29, 2013 {Courtesy the publisher}

My Thoughts:

Though still suffering from bloat (at least 100 hundred pages could easily be cut from it’s 635pp length) I enjoyed Redemption more than the previous installment, Disgrace.  There is more humour and less overt violence with Department Q head, Detective Carl Mørck and his staff, Assad and Rose, pitted against a chilling sociopath,  who has managed to escape notice for more than fifteen years.  It begins with a barely legible message in a  bottle written in blood which leads the team to a serial killer responsible for the the kidnap, ransom and murder of siblings. The case is complex, with few clues and even less evidence for the cold case team to exploit but slowly they begin to unravel the deadly career of this careful criminal. There is more to the novel than just the case though, the protagonists have lives outside of their careers and who they are is as interesting as what they do.  Redemption is an intriguing and compelling novel and I am looking forward to the next title to be translated from this talented Danish crime fiction author.   ★★★★

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Title: The Raven’s Eye {Brock and Kolla #12}

Author: Barry Maitland

Published: Allen & Unwin September 2013

Status: Read on September 14, 2013 {Courtesy the publisher}

My Thoughts:

I was surprised to learn I had overlooked this crime fiction series from Scottish born but Australian based author Barry Maitland. The Raven’s Eye is the 12th mystery to feature London police detective’s Kathy Kolla and David Brock but the first I have read and I have to wonder if my lack of history with the characters affected my enjoyment of this novel. The mystery centers around  a woman whose death is dismissed as accidental but something about it doesn’t sit right with  Kolla. Under pressure from the demanding new Commander to move on, Kolla decides to make some enquiries on her own time slowly unraveling a case  which intersects in an unusual way with the force’s hunt for criminal kingpin ‘Butcher’ Jack Bragg. I was enjoying the novel quite a lot until about the half way point when Kolla chose to make decisions that I felt even a rookie wouldn’t make, and subsequently the plot began to fall apart eventually fizzling into an ending that barely made any sense. Overall I felt quite disappointed by the execution of  The Raven’s Eye  ★★

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Title: Claire DeWitt and the Bohemian Highway {Claire DeWitt #2}

Author: Sara Gran

Published: Faber and Faber August 2013

Status: Read from August 23 to 25, 2013 {Courtesy Allen & Unwin}

My Thoughts:

I was intrigued by the first book of this series, Claire DeWitt and the City of the Dead, describing it in my review as “a slightly surreal, complex novel that is not just about the mystery of the missing… but also explores life’s larger mysteries, those of self, purpose and fate.” This novel is no different but I found I was less patient with Claire’s idiosyncrasies as she wandered around snorting coke waiting for the answers to the mystery of her ex boyfriends murder to find her as dictated by her ‘bible’,  ‘Détection’. The plot wavers in favour of eccentricity and I found my attention waning, with the secondary  case – a recall of one of Claire DeWitt’s first cases as a teenager- just barely sustaining interest. Though the writing is quite stunning and I admired some of the unique elements of character this literary crime novel was sadly a bit of a slog for me.  ★★

 

1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Leeswammes
    Sep 30, 2013 @ 06:54:57

    I only read Redemption, but I enjoyed it a lot and, like you, better than the second book. I like the story of Detective Morck and his assistants too. Isn’t this where the twin sisters show up as secretaries? That was brilliant. I’ve got the 4th book as ebook but haven’t read it yet. Something to look forward to!

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