Thursday, 2 September 2010
Requiem Mass by Elizabeth Corley
I can’t even remember where I came across this book, but I’m glad I did. Corley creates some interesting characters from remarkable perspectives and presents her detective with several moral dilemmas which make the reader stop and think about justice in its entirety. What is justice and can it be wrong to pursue it in every case and at all costs? She also created a rather incongruous detective. Many of the protagonists in modern crime novels are young and single with no children or have a drink problem etc. etc. Fenwick is a family man who cares deeply about his children and his own effect on their lives. As such, Corley adds an element of reality by introducing a man who, like the rest of us, has to juggle his career and desire to rise in the ranks with his life without dropping the ball on either. I suppose the potential for the dysfunctionalism which is so prevalent in today’s society and modern literature, but it’s refreshing to find a character who is fighting it and hasn’t just given in and accepted that he must sacrifice his family to his career. Not that Fenwick doesn’t have his problems, but they don’t take pride of place in his life as they so often seem to nowadays.
Interesting plot, engaging characters, enough tension to keep it interesting and a depth which is often lacking in crime novels. 5/5