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Sunday, 17 December 2017

‘In the Dark’ by Andreas Pflüger



Published by Head of Zeus,
16 November 2017.
ISBN: 978-1-78669091-3 (HB)

Jenny Aaron is a unique police detective, blinded in a disastrously unsuccessful mission five years earlier in Barcelona when she abandoned a badly wounded colleague.  Exceptionally intuitive, an excellent marksman, she has battled meticulously to navigate her sightless world to ensure that the disability doesn’t impair her super efficiency in the secret, elite Berlin unit to which she’s urgently recalled.  Tasked to investigate the senseless and brutal murder of a prison psychologist, old enemies and hostilities re-emerge and old friendships and alliances revive.

It’s a race against time to hunt down a cunning and ruthless serial killer whose prey is Jenny. The reader twists and turns on a rollercoaster of a chase that is never predictable and this is entwined with interesting references to Bushido, the Samurai Code of Conduct, deeply engrained in Jenny and her pursuer, and to the limits of physical endurance.  

The plot is an elegant and detailed jigsaw of construction.  Jenny is a stubborn, likeable heroine and the author himself has stated, without giving too much away, that the book is the first in a trilogy.   Subsidiary characters play their part well and are entirely credible, and the dialogue is intelligent, flowing effortlessly right up to the final, shocking showdown.  This is a truly gripping, action packed and un-putdownable read.

The author, a German screenwriter, wrote in the German language and is served well by a talented translator, Shaun Whiteside, who has undertaken a superb job of rendering this complex novel into English. 

Let Jenny have the last word:
If there is still time in the end
I don’t want to ask myself
why I must die
I want to know
why I have lived.
------
Reviewer: Serena Fairfax

Andreas Pfluger is a German screenwriter and author. He has written a number of episodes for the hugely popular German police procedural Tatort.


Serena Fairfax spent her childhood in India, qualified as a lawyer in England and practised in London for many years. She began writing by contributing feature articles to legal periodicals   then turned her hand to fiction. Having published nine novels all, bar one, hardwired with a romantic theme, she has also written short stories and accounts of her explorations off the beaten track that feature on her blog. A tenth, distinctly unromantic, novel is a work in progress. Thrillers, crime and mystery narratives, collecting old masks and singing are a few of her favourite things.

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