I must say, I'm really enjoying dipping into this series now and then. certainly there was a bit of a longish wait for our (first?) murder, this go-around, but now that someone is actually dead, I'm thinking that was one of my favorite 'discovery of the corpse " scenes I've encountered. not only is the victim the person I would most have suspected of being the murderer were this person to be still alive on page 96, but I love how ever-curious Mordecai, who just couldn't resist taking one little "peek" (it had been gnawing at him since the day before), went up the ladder for a bit of fun, and to take his peek, and...there's a dead person, while the individual with the closest link to the deceased shows up simultaneously, wondering where so-and-so is, since so-and-so seems to have gone missing/"gee, I hope nothing terrible has happened, you haven't seen [him or her], have you, Mr. Tremaine...?".
uhhhhhmmmmm, yes. yes, I have...
as I was reading Harbor, I thought about my next Mystery read maybe also having a maritime, even oceanic, theme to it. the power of the sea, and all that, transferred from Horror to a whodunit. I thought about a few books I have ready: A Watery Grave; Inspector French and the Sea Mystery. the phrase "watery grave" even turned up in Harbor, like an omen.
well, I ignored it. I decided going to a book with either the word "sea", or the words "watery grave" was a bit too obvious--and I settled for Behold A Fair Woman, which hinted at a "killer stalking the sand dunes", and had a cove complete with windmill on the gorgeous cover. I thought to myself: "well, if it starts on a beach, but moves to a big city after 10 pages, you had your shot to pick something more obviously watery, and declined. so let's see how we do...".
so far...VERY maritimish! we do have a windmill--possibly haunted--and a lighthouse too! turning out to be the perfect follow-up to Harbor, if I wanted a similar vibe, but with better weather and a lovelier climate. I'm on the island of Moulin d'Or. there's a jetty, St. Julian's Harbour, tourists, and instead of a hostel, like in Harbor, there's a full-scale hotel--big and ugly, and peopled with catty, enigmatic passive-aggressive types who definitely have a weird history. Mordecai's vacation is clearly going to end soon, when the first body drops (detectives are very good at taking vacations where evil people are planning mayhem, aren't they?). anyway, it's got the verve I now expect from this fairly fast-paced author--not the most colorful stylist in the world, but not constructing a book out of dry wood and stale vanilla hardened with sawdust; in fact, some of the turns of phrase are frightfully melodramatic. but, I like it. this is exactly what I wanted for more harborside shenanigans after, uh, Harbor. and David Niven is Mordecai Tremaine, in my mind.
time for another Mordecai Tremaine Mystery! actually, I'm bloomin' lucky to own this one, as opposed to the other three I bought. a trio of books from this series were in the Mystery section of the bookstore, and their lovely covers and tempting back-cover synopses got me to spend. days later, a browse of the General Fiction section at that same store brought my eye to the spine of Behold A Fair Woman by pure chance--thank goodness for similar spine-design, leading to a quick peek at a now-familiar author name...and I even tracked the one that was filed completely out of place! nice try, series-splitter-uppers.
they don't seem to have his Yuletide title, though--Murder For Christmas. maybe in the Spiritual section...?
Publisher: No Exit Press (21st Sept 2017)
Source: Real Readers
In the depths of the Norwegian winter, a woman s frozen corpse is discovered in the garden of a notorious ex-lawyer, Vilhelm Thygesen. She has been stabbed to death.
A young biker, a member of a gang once represented by the lawyer, is found dead in suspicious circumstances.
Thygesen starts receiving anonymous threats, and becomes ensnared in a web of violence, crime and blackmail that spreads across Northern Europe.
Does the frozen woman hold the key?
I have lost count of the number of times I have picked up The Frozen Woman over the past several weeks. Usually, I really enjoy nordic crime thrillers, and this has twice won Norway's best crime novel, so there is no reason that I should not thoroughly enjoy it. I just could not get into it. At my last attempt, I got about 40% in, and then just completely lost interest again. I persevered more than I normally would if I had bought the book rather than had been given it to review, but alas, it was not for me. Thank you to the nudge team for providing a copy for me to review via Real Readers.