As a founder member of Mystery Women in 1997, promoting Crime Fiction has always been my passion.
Following the closure of Mystery Women, a new group was formed on 30th January 2012 promoting crime fiction.
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Translated from the German by Anthea Bell
Published by Weidenfeld & Niccolson, 12 May 2016. ISBN: 978-1780228327
Blum’s childhood was marred by emotional abuse, but she has found happiness and
security in marriage and motherhood.Her
fulfilling domestic life is complemented by her professional success running
the Blum Funerary Institute, Innsbruck.When, however, Blum’s idyllic marriage is unexpectedly shattered by the
death of her spouse, Mark, she rapidly moves from the numbing paralysis of
grief to a ruthless and energetic pursuit of those she believes are responsible
for his murder.Blum displays terrifying
resilience and cool determination as she systematically begins to administer
justice by hunting down the unwholesome gang that her police-officer husband
had sought to expose before he was killed.
The tale is a chilling one.When the protagonist of a novel spends her working life preparing corpses for their final resting
places, the reader, gentle or otherwise, will inevitably encounter some unpleasant
and gruesome events.There are explicit
and macabre descriptions throughout the book and I was delighted to find myself
plunged into one spine-tingling chamber of horrors after another whilst being
pulled every which way on a breathtaking ride to the scintillating
conclusion.Aichner researched for this
novel by working, for six months, as an undertaker’s assistant, and his graphic
depictions of the mortician’s particular skills are, at times, seriously
The story also explores Blum’s psyche
through a backstory that reveals the dysfunctional relationship she had with
her adoptive parents.A series of
premeditated and cruel acts of vengeance by the intrepid undertaker results in
the elimination of several hideously sadistic criminals; the question is
whether Blum’s merciless punishment is justified or not.Despite several of the villains meeting quite
hair-raising ends, I found myself applauding Blum’s resolve and courage and
willing her on to finish the job.Woman
of the Dead is an exhilarating, unusual and deliciously frightening read.
is an award-winning author and photographer living in Innsbruck, Austria. His
books have been translated into eight languages.
Dot Marshall-Gentworked in the
emergency services for twenty years first as a police officer, then as a
paramedic and finally as a fire control officer before graduating from King’s
College, London as a teacher of English in her mid-forties. She completed
a M.A. in Special and Inclusive Education at the Institute of Education, London
and now teaches part-time and writes mainly about educational issues. Dot
sings jazz and country music and plays guitar, banjo and piano as well as being
addicted to reading mystery and crime fiction.