Friday, 27 November 2015

The Ghost Runner

Finished November 26
The Ghost Runner by Parker Bilal

This is the third book in the series featuring Makana, but the first that I've read. Makana is from Sudan, but now living in exile in Cairo. He was a police officer in Sudan, but with the change in regime, he lost everything: his job, his family, and nearly his life. In Cairo, he has created a business as a private investigator and he and his partner have taken on the mundane job of following a man around to see if his wife's suspicions of a mistress are true. The man seems to be innocent, and therefore the job is quite boring until one day when he stops at a private health clinic. Makana finds him to be visiting a severely burned young woman. As his curiosity takes him further, and he confronts the man, he gets hired for a different job. Find the man who did this to the young woman. His job takes him out into the desert community of Siwa, where both of the girl's parents were from. There he finds a very insular community, with corrupt police, a drunken doctor, and many secrets past and present.
This is a story of a man haunted by his past, with a strong moral sense, and very good instincts and investigative skills. He is a man who notices things, and that means that he isn't easily fooled, and that he isn't willing to take things at face value. This is not a nicely wrapped up story, but a story that feels representative of a certain place and time in the world. A very interesting read.

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