BOOK REVIEW: Luther- The Calling by Neil Cross

The Calling is the first novel featuring DCI John Luther. Yes, the same Luther you saw on telly as I did, played by Idris Elba. There are so many DC’s and DCI’s the modern British Crime Fiction has produced, so why bother about this one? As usually, he is tortured and that is interesting. Aren’t all?

DCI John Luther has a clearance rate of cases which is extraordinary as it is portrayed by Neil Cross in the telly series too, in the first few episodes. If you have watched the series or/are planning to, you can still read the book. The consequences of this book are what followed by the television series. It’s a prequel.

The plot is simple, John Luther is hunting for a brutal murderer and baby kidnapper who intends to do what he has done again. Now, the most extraordinary thing is there in this simplicity and the credit goes to the author of the book, Neil Cross. The opening scene is do dramatised and there a few more to grab, I feel as if it was a real crime scene in front of me. Every detail is spectacularly written, and very rare in crime fiction novels do you find such generous reception. Continue reading “BOOK REVIEW: Luther- The Calling by Neil Cross”

BOOK REVIEW: Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie

This one certainly one of the most famous Agatha Christie’s crime tale. Whomsoever I am talking with about crime fiction, does bring up Agatha Christie (even if they haven’t read her). The queen of crime as they like to call her, but Hercule Poirot certainly not the king of detectives.

Murder on the Orient Express is a renowned locked room mystery. A locked room mystery, if elaborated is a crime that sounds impossible to ensue. The plot starts on the famous Orient Express train that promises to take her passengers to a journey across the Europe, but is stuck somewhere in between due to heavy snow. Now this is a real incident, an experience the queen of crime has shared with us, her readers from the memorabilia of her life.

This locked room mystery is based on the whole coach of the Orient Express and Hercule Poirot happens to be in that coach. The deed is done, the culprit runs away and Poirot is given the task of bringing the culprit into the spotlight and by deducing his every move, to satisfy his own curiosity as well as the readers of the book. Continue reading “BOOK REVIEW: Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie”

Crime and Punishment and Redemption

Redemption. We all seek redemption. Most of us are seeking it from our past self for an idealistic future self in various forms. Writing Crime and Punishment for Fyodor Dostoyevsky is a creative redemption from his past and some of his brother, originally titled The Drunkards. Dostoyevsky became fond of this project and rewrote a version of it from scratch, that we take in our hands today and proudly read.

From the start of the novel, the author accomplishes to decipher that the protagonist, Raskolnikov, is tortured by his own thoughts. A student, as many, poverty-stricken, plans an instantaneous murder of an old pawnbroker, thinking it will delay his poverty for few more weeks, completely ignorant of the aftermath and having minimal self-control. This act of morality follows an aftermath which turns out to be psychological for Raskolnikov and the author spots an absolute scenario of what happens after one stands on the brink of insanity using Raskolnikov as his puppet until the protagonist is bring in contact with his own buried conscience and another sufferer. On the engagement of the book and one’s mind, one will indulge in it actively enough as the plot moves forward.

There is suspense in the novel no doubt. Dostoyevsky, in some amount succeeds in the main theme which he tries to revolve around the story: redemption. Characters like Raskolnikov do have a place in a reader’s mind once they have acquired his attention, for longer period of time. But novels like itself, fails to provide strong reasoning for characters who prove to be a drag thoughtout it. I am not going to name a few, you have to read it and judge it for yourself. My assessment is this, when moving forward the path author wants it to and so does the reader, then why a writer like Dostoyevsky would use elements to create a labyrinth, a maze which has no possible point to prove through the novel and does proves to be unnecessary?
Continue reading “Crime and Punishment and Redemption”

The World of Crime Fiction

In Italy, people call a story that consist of detectives or crimes giallo, for the word yellow. The reason is that since 1930s mostly crime fiction books had yellow covers. The earliest known crime fiction book is over twenty pages and is written by Danish author Steen Steensen Blicher and published in 1829. It is called The Rector of Veilbye and is supposedly based on a true murder case from 1626 in Vejlby, Denmark. The story is in the form of diary entries by a character named Erik Sorensen whose focus is on a trial about an unexplained disappearance of a farm labourer and after fifteen years the bones are unearthed.

The evolution and popularity of the genre increased in late nineteenth century in UK and USA, offering cheap paperbacks and mass producing them. Author like Arthur Conan Doyle made a huge contribution in the development of this literary genre for the famous detective Sherlock Holmes. Continue reading “The World of Crime Fiction”

BOOK REVIEW: Even Dogs in the Wild by Ian Rankin

John Rebus is back. Old, fat, still surviving on booze and nicotine. This time he is back with some old fellows as DI Siobhan Clarke and Malcolm Fox, and his old Dr. Hyde resembler, Big Ger Cafferty. With new villains and other fresh characters such as Daryl Christie and James Page, introduced only two novels back in Standing in Another Man’s Grave, Rankin has indulged us readers into a deeper mystery this time.

Detective Inspector Siobhan Clarke is investigating the death of a senior lawyer during a robbery. But the case becomes more complex when a note is discovered, indicating that this may have been no random attack, and when local gangster Big Ger Cafferty receives an identical message, Clarke decides that the recently retired John Rebus may be able to help. He’s the only man Cafferty will open up to, and together the two old adversaries might just stand a chance of saving Cafferty’s skin.

Meanwhile a team from Glasgow has arrived and they will leave no stone unturned for what they want before the leave Edinburgh in its own hands. DI Malcolm Fox is assigned a simple looking yet harsh task of providing local expertise to the undercover squad but he is soon drawn in too deep as everything collides. Continue reading “BOOK REVIEW: Even Dogs in the Wild by Ian Rankin”

BOOK REVIEW: Tooth And Nail by Ian Rankin

Tooth and Nail is the third novel by Ian Rankin featuring Inspector John Rebus. Rebus is sent to London to help detectives hunt a serial killer dubbed the Wolfman by the press. In the previous year, in some reviews and an essay on John Rebus, I have talked about Rebus a lot. My love and hate relationship with him and his actions and why he is to be considered as one of the most proficient detectives written in the contemporary world.

Rebus arrives in London just as news of a new victim of the serial killer begins broadcasting over the news. Rebus goes directly to the scene of the crime and is shocked to see the brutality first hand of a case he has only read about. Rebus attends the autopsy and spends some time with the lead detective, uncomfortably aware that this detective seems to think he is some sort of expert based on one case Rebus worked several years before.

Meanwhile, he is as usual vulnerable to some aspect of the story. He is new to London, despise it, and his ex-wife and teenage daughter live in London and a visit with them reveals that his daughter is dating someone who is not the kind of person a copper would choose for his daughter. Continue reading “BOOK REVIEW: Tooth And Nail by Ian Rankin”

A Glimpse of The World with Detectives

In the previous post, The World of Crime Fiction, I talked briefly about the origins of crime fiction. In this post I present you a list of detectives around the world.

Ian Rankin’s John Rebus books set in Edinburgh are engrossing tales of a misanthropic policeman who solves crime ordinarily or extraordinarily committed.

Set in Reykjavik,  Arnaldur Indridason’s Inspector Erlendur novels have the bleak setting, social realism and gentle pacing associated with Scandinavian noir. Continue reading “A Glimpse of The World with Detectives”