My September Euro Crime and Petrona reviews

RoShadows RoShadows RoShadows Two of my book reviews went up at Euro Crime during September, both of rather good novels. One, River of Shadows by Valerio Varesi (MacLehose Press; translator Joseph Farrell) is a classic police procedural set in the Italian countryside. I wrote that it is "a welcome newcomer to the crime fiction genre (in England, at least: it was first published in Italy in 2003). Soneri has many attributes in common with Andrea Camilleri's Inspector Salvo Montalbani". The other, Three Seconds by Roslund and Hellstrom (Quercus; translator Kari Dickson), is an "addictive thriller".  I wrote: "the book has two elements. In one, it is a great thriller whose pace never lets up, particularly in the second half. It is full of the sort of detail that made Stieg Larsson so popular, for example the scenes in the library and the way in which the police informer tries to anticipate anything and everything that might transpire once he is incarcerated and can't control events. The other main element in the book, again with echoes of Larsson, is the political corruption of the national police force in Sweden and the ministry of justice responsible for its oversight."

My reviews at Petrona during September include some very good novels: An Empty Death by Laura Wilson; Ashes to Dust by Yrsa Sigurdardottir (translator Philip Roughton); The Woman Before Me, a talented debut by Ruth Dugdale (winner of the CWA debut dagger); Midnight Cab by James Nicholl; and U is for Undertow by Sue Grafton, among a few others. See here for the month's archived reviews. I also reviewed my first (and so far only) Kindle book during September: Silent Counsel by Ken Isaacson.

I'm not going to pick a favourite from these as it would be a bit like comparing apples and oranges, but I can certainly recommend any of them as a very good read indeed.

5 thoughts on “My September Euro Crime and Petrona reviews

  1. Maxine I am about half way through Three Seconds and really enjoying the Larsson like detail and the build up of tension. Looking forward to the second half now, but I won’t read your review till I have written mine.

  2. Thanks for the three recommendations. I printed out your 3rd quarter books and am aiming for those starred, or some of them, although I’d read 4. Valerio Varesi looks good, and I also will look for the other Gianrico Carofiglio books which are at the library. Still reading Malla Nunn’s “Let the Dead Die,” which doesn’t disappoint.

  3. I must get round to Stratton´s War, a book I am really looking forward to, but thanks to good friends (and their numerous temptations) I have so many promising ones on my shelf.

  4. Ali Karim does a bang-up job of interviewing the “Three Seconds” authors at the Rap Sheet. What interesting people. I might not read the book as I think it’s too hard-boiled for me, but I appreciated what the authors had to say. They even discussed “genre fiction” and “literary fiction” and came out on the right side, in my view, anyway. It’s well worth reading.
    I’m looking forward to the “Virtual Bouchercon” experience of reading reportbacks and summaries, maybe video clips. The list of authors who are involved is simply staggering!
    I’m also considering coining another term: If the books we listen to on tape are called “audiobooks,” why can’t the dvd movies we see of classic mysteries (am looking at the PBS productions of Ngaio Marsh mysteries, for example), be called “videobooks”?

  5. I have just finished reading Three Seconds, and really want to go back and read The Vault. That sits on my TBR shelf and I never got round to reading it , but after the totally addictive Three Seconds it is a must read. Many thanks Maxine for the review copy.

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