Some books from the Library

Final Account is book 7 in the Inspector Banks series. This is a series I really enjoy and I have not read in a while so it was a pleasure to pick it up again. This book was renamed in the US, so UK readers will know it as Dry Bones that Dream.

In this installment, Banks is called to the scene of an almost headless victim of a shotgun blast. His traumatized daughter has to give her accounting of events and Banks becomes emotionally involved as he resolves to see justice done for the daughter’s sake. As the investigation broadens more characters are involved and Banks realizes that not everything about the crime, the victim, and some of the others he meets along the way are as it seems. Great installment in a series that I regularly enjoy.

This is the second book in the Inspector Vaara series.

Inspector Vaara is investigating a crime in which a woman was brutally tortured to death. At the same time he has been called to look into whether there is any truth to a local hero being branded a war criminal. Deception abounds and Vaara cannot seem to untangle his personal feelings and ideas of right and wrong from the investigations. Add into this all a strong dose of political pressure, chronic pain, visiting obnoxious relatives and it is a pressure cooker of a situation. This is a good outing in the series, but not as good as good as the first book, which I really liked. There is also somewhat of a cliffhanger at the end of the book regarding Vaara’s personal life.

This Dog for Hire appeared to be a cozy mystery, however I would not really classify as that. Yes, there is non-police sleuth and yes, we have an animal sidekick. But the crime and underlying mood of the book feels darker and more tense. The sleuth, Rachel Alexander, is hired to work on the case of murdered artist, whose valuable dog disappeared is missing. There are many theories of the crime batted around and Rachel does quite a bit of chasing down leads. The dog is recovered early on, the gist is not animal abuse by any means. The resolution and events that led to the crime are shocking when revealed. Great first in a series.

The Secret Place is the second book in two months I’ve read by Tana French. I love her writing and her books, generally. This book was an exception. I can appreciate the attention to detail and the research that went into delving into the teenage culture and vernacular, but there was only so much of it I can take. I was doing fine up until about a third of the way through and then I just had enough. The book is over 450 pages long and while the crime was interesting and the adult characters are superb, it is very teen centric. The crime and practically everyone involved are teens and the locations center on private boarding schools and the local shopping center/hangout.

As a Tana French fan, I am glad that I read it as her characters often roll over into other books, but it definitely was not a favorite.