Wednesday, 28 March 2007

Three works of fiction

Finished March 28
Death Comes For the Fat Man by Reginald Hill
The latest in the Dalziel and Pascoe series brings in the element of terrorism. When a police officer thinks he's seen a gun in a video shop, assistance is called in. Dalziel is on duty and Pascoe is called from home in case it is a hostage situation where his negotiation skills might be needed. When the shop explodes, Dalziel is hit badly, but Pascoe has less severe injuries. With Dalziel in a coma, Pascoe is determined to find out what was behind it, but sees intrigue and suspects everywhere. The existence of an anti-Arab group called The Templars that may have support in high places adds more danger to his search for answers. This is a real pageturner.

The Big Over Easy by Jasper Fforde
Read by Simon Pebble, 10 CDs
I've been listening to this one on my commute. The first in Fforde's Nursery Crime series, this book introduces Jack Spratt and Mary Mary in their first adventure, searching for the cause of Humpty Dumpty's death. Fforde's imagination inspires so many twists and nursery elements and characters that the listener is spellbound. I love his sense of humour and both his outrageous and subtle uses of allusion and farce. From Prometheus to Willie Winkie, this book will keep you guessing and laughing right until the end.

David Golder by Irene Nemirovsky
Translated by Sandra Smith
This 1929 second novel by Nemirovsky was lauded at the time of its initial publication. The author based the work partly on her own experiences and knowledge of the financial world. The main character is a Jewish financier, disregarded by his wife and valued only for his gifts of money by his daughter. He does not have any remorse for those in need and refuses to help his partner when he comes to him for help. As he fights for his business to survive in a difficult economic time, he also finds that the strain has undermined his health. He has to decide how he really feels about those closest to him and what this means for him in terms of actions.

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