Crime Fiction (View all)
Commissaire Adamsberg leaves Paris for a three-day conference in London. With him are a young sergeant, Estalre, and Commandant Danglard, who is terrified at the idea of travelling beneath the Channel. It is the break they all need, until a macabre and brutal case comes to the attention of their colleague Radstock from New Scotland Yard. Just outside the baroque and romantic old Highgate cemetery a pile of shoes is found. Not so strange in itself, but the shoes contain severed feet. As Scotland Yard's investigation begins, Adamsberg and his colleagues return home and are confronted with a massacre in a suburban home. Adamsberg and Danglard are drawn in to a trail of vampires and vampire-hunters that leads them all the way to Serbia, a place where the old certainties no longer apply.
Frederique Audoin-Rouzeau, or Fred Vargas, as she likes to be known, has become a favourite author for a large number of avid readers, and there will be quite a few of them anxious to get their eager hands on her newest novel. I couldn’t wait to get hold of the proof and read it very fast; almost too fast in fact, so that I really need to read it all over again to appreciate exactly how it unfolded. Those of you who are fans will love it! Adamsberg seems to get a little more eccentric with each book, and this time the plot is out there as well, taking odd, unexpected twists and turns designed to delight and frustrate you. For those who haven’t yet experienced the joys of this wonderful French writer, she is quirky, witty and musical, and she writes, as they say, like an angel. Her detective is the highly original and intuitive Jean-Baptiste Adamsberg, he of the Zen research methods: he is counterbalanced by his methodical and infuriatingly logical offsider Adrien Danglard, father of five, and conspicuous white wine consumer. When my husband, who inclines towards the somewhat “blokey” Lee Child and Michael Connelly, embarked upon Wash This Blood Clean From my Hands (an earlier book), he was somewhat disconcerted by the protagonist’s (extremely) lateral thinking, but he gradually found his way into it, and I must say, during this last number, it did occur to me that it might prove very interesting to sneak into the Nuriootpa police station and listen in... see if their investigations are driven by similar vivid flights of fancy... somehow I don’t think so, but it’s all such terrific fun!