Tuesday, 14 October 2014

The Burning by Jane Casey

Maeve Kerrigan Novels
Minotaur Books; Reprint edition (May 8 2012)
368 pages - 13.86 $

It's been a while since I have this book in my To Be Read pile (TBR) on Netgalley and I finally decided to start it... and I finished it in a few days! I admit that the romantic side in a detective series bothers me, it's not my kind of reading but ultimately I do not regret it. 

The blurb

In this first in Casey’s thrilling, romantic mystery series for adults, meet Detective Constables Maeve Kerrigan and Rob Langton 

The Burning Man. It’s the name the media has given a brutal murderer who has beaten four young women to death before setting their bodies ablaze in secluded areas of London’s parks. And now there’s a fifth.

Maeve Kerrigan is an ambitious detective constable, keen to make her mark on the murder task force. Her male colleagues believe Maeve’s empathy makes her weak, but the more she learns about the latest victim, Rebecca Haworth, from her grieving friends and family, the more determined Maeve becomes to bring her murderer to justice. But how do you catch a killer no one has seen when so much of the evidence has gone up in smoke?

Maeve’s frenetic hunt for a killer in Jane Casey’s gripping series debut will entrance even the most jaded suspense readers.

What's good in that book

I should say at once that once again, the blurb provided by the publisher does not really stick to the story! (I wonder if the person who writes the blurb actually reads the books...

Maeve investigate the fifth victim because 1) her boss asked her to and 2) because they have found evidences that differ from the other murders. Point. If her male colleagues make fun of her, it's not because she has empathy for the victim but because she is a woman in a man's world. Point (bis). This topic is rather well treated in fact, Maeve having learned to defend herself and to respond to attacks from her colleagues which changes from some of the other novels. Here, the author does not dwell on machismo, gender relations and sexual harassment at work with long speeches. She treats the subject as a fact and shows the difficulties faced by Maeve through sometimes rough dialogues

Maeve investigate the latest victim, whose body we discovered early in the book. In view of certain elements, the detectives want to know if the victim is one of the Burning Man or not. Throughout the story, we thus learn more about Rebecca, her friends, her family, her past. The other four victims, meanwhile, are only vaguely described. I must say that I knew before the end who killed Rebecca (and yet, I never try to know in advance, because I like to be surprised) (for those who like to rack their brain to find the culprit, it can be frustrating). The story is well done, the results of the investigation are revealed as you go. There is a bit of luck in the discovery of the culprit, a little action, some wounded, in short, you do not get bored. 

If you worry about the romantic part of the book, it's very light, so this is not a problem for those who do not like affectations. The author puts a lot of humor in the relationships, which makes the story less romantic but more real. Good to know also, the book is mainly narrated throught the point of view of Maeve and Louise, Rebecca's best friend. The chapters are identified, so there is no possibility of confusing the characters which is fine because the author has not quite managed to create different voices for the two women (but I may be biased after reading Lauren Beukes, champion of the characterization).

In a nutshell

Some likable characters, a story well done, realistic dialogues and a bit of humor, it's a 3.5 / 5 for me.

Disclaimer: An e-galley of this title was provided to me by the publisher. No review was promised and the above is an unbiased review of the novel.

No comments:

Post a Comment