mandag den 11. maj 2009

Peter James, Not Dead Enough (2007)

This crime novel which is the third in the Roy Grace series, is my first acquaintance with the British writer.

The plot sets out well with the affluent wife Katie Bishop who is found murdered in her own home. Of course the police take a close look at the husband, but he has an unassailable alibi. Soon after another woman is murdered, also someone who is connected with Brian Bishop, and the police begin looking for a serial killer.

Roy Grace is a likeable and competent detective superintendent, but it is difficult for him to focus on the murder case as his good friend and colleague has marital problems and moves into Grace´s flat. Furthermore, old friends tell him that they have seen his wife, Sandy, who disappeared several years ago, abroad.

My overall impression: an average crime novel written in average language, not free of clichés. I think the plot is supposed to be ingenious, but I don´t see it as truly original, and it is too easy to guess what is going on. This surprised me as I have seen several enthusiastic reviews of James´ books, but apparently I am not the first reader who has been disappointed with the plot in this one.

Peter James, Langtfra død (2008).

Denne krimi er mit første bekendtskab med den britiske forfatter, men den tredje i serien om Roy Grace.

Plottet begynder i fin stil med overklassefruen Katie Bishop, som bliver fundet myrdet i sit eget hjem. Politiet undersøger naturligvis ægtemanden nærmere, men han har et uangribeligt alibi. Kort efter bliver endnu en kvinde myrdet, også med tilknytning til Brian Bishop, og politiet begynder nu at tænke i seriemorder-baner.

Kriminalkommissær Roy Grace er en tiltalende og dygtig politimand, men det falder ham svært at koncentrere sig fuldt ud om mordsagerne, da han først må bruge tid på at støtte sin ven og kollega, som netop er blevet smidt ud af sin kone. Senere hører han, via gamle venner, at hans forsvundne kone, Sandy, er blevet set i udlandet.

Mit helhedsindtryk: middelgod krimi i middelgodt sprog, som ikke er fri for klicheer. Plottet skulle vist være udspekuleret, men er i virkeligheden ikke specielt originalt, og det er lidt for let at gætte sig til, hvad der foregår. Jeg undrer mig lidt, da jeg har set mange begejstrede anmeldelser af forfatteren, men jeg er tilsyneladende ikke den første, som har været skuffet over plottet i denne bog.

4 kommentarer:

Lauren sagde ...

I got this from the local charity shop, and I donated it back as soon as I'd finished, which basically sums up my reaction.

It was OK, but nothing special. The Sandy plot appeared to appear out of nowhere (I know it's a series, but...) and the trip to Munich was logistically almost impossible; I didn't buy Grace's relationship with Cleo; and even the twist on the killer's identity was framed slightly oddly (I really liked the idea, but who doesn't turn a page or two to check on things!)

I thought the colleague with marital problems was one of the most interesting in the book, but the house-share sequences were *so* cliched. (I can just about buy 'all men are slobs' if I have to, but surely people behave better when they are guests?)

Dorte H sagde ...

Lauren, mine comes from the local library so no problem there :)

I think you sum it up very well, and I have heard many similar reactions to his third. If I come across the first ones, I will certainly give them a chance as so many people seem to like them better.

Unknown sagde ...

I haven't heard of this author but I think I'll pass this one up. There are so many crime novels nowadays on the market that I feel the book has to be truly ingenious and extraordinary to catch my attention. I guess I have been jaded a little bit after having read the best of them IMO.

Dorte H sagde ...

Lilly, good idea. It wasn´t embarrassingly bad but you won´t miss a lot.
I hope I will have a more positive review at the end of the week :D