by Nicci French
Bonnie Graham is standing in a room belonging to a friend. At her feet is a corpse, straddled in a spreading pool of blood. The questions are numerous: who is responsible for the dead body on the floor? What does she, Bonnie, have to do with it? And what is her next course of action? This opening premise gives some idea of just how quickly (and comprehensively) Nicci French is able to transfix the reader. It is this combination of a shocking situation and the ill-advised, often self-destructive actions of the duo's protagonists which the authors pull off in book after book; we may disapprove of what French’s characters do in their extreme situations, but it's impossible not to identify with them. Bonnie is a music teacher, rehearsing through a sweltering summer in London with a band that is scheduled to play at a wedding. Any pleasure the experience might have afforded is to evaporate as bitter internecine divisions within the band make themselves felt, and sexual involvements move in particularly murderous directions. This is typical Nicci French fare -- and admirers will meet need no other recommendation.
I'm doing pretty well on this so far, having read Belinda Bauer's Theakston's Old Peculiar Crime Award-winning novel, Rubbernecker, Tess Gerritsen's The Surgeon and now Mark Billingham's Scaredy Cat (all of which are very good). However, I still feel like I have a little while to go. The good thing about this is that I am discovering brand new authors all the time, which is amazing!
Nicci French is definitely on the list of authors I need to read. I've heard many great things about her books in the past, so I'm excited to add this one to the crime to-read pile and get going with it (once I get through the stockpiled Tess Gerritsen and Belinda Bauer novels!).
What's on your wishlist this week? Let us know in the comments below, or link to your own Wishlist Wednesday post in the Linky :)