The 7th Woman

The 7th Woman - Frédérique Molay, Anne Trager I enjoy mysteries and recently I have been trying to read mysteries from different parts of the world and have found it very interesting to see how these types of stories play out in different cultures.  Cotteril’s Dr. Siri Paiboun series set in 1970’s Laos is full of self deprecating humor and a distrust for authority figures.  Camilleri’s Inspector Montalbano series set in Sicily is dry with an interesting disdain for any sort of procedural method in detection.  Crimes are solved, and the detectives are equally effective and skilled in their own distinct ways.

It seems to me that the British and American crime solvers are similar.  Often times, going all the way back to Sherlock Holmes, they are either completely outside the criminal justice system (amateurs, private detectives, or retired police officers) or if they are actually police officers, they are either damaged in some way or have their own code and procedures that they follow.  We like the free agent, the rebel, the detective who puts his moral code above the letter of the law.  At least we do in novels because that type of behavior in a police officer would most likely be a nightmare in real life.  Harry Callahan is fine on the movie screen, but we don’t want to see him walking up to our vehicle when we blew that red light trying to get to work on time.

Molay’s Nico Sirsky series is set in Paris and they love their rules.  They have tremendous respect for their bosses.  Everyone is supremely skilled and devoted to their jobs.  Even being well dressed and physically fit and attractive is important enough to be mentioned as a sign of success and competence.  The French are a bit different I guess.

The Seventh Woman is a very well done “race against time” type thriller.  The killer has promised to kill seven women in seven days and we are off at 90 miles per hour from the start.  I read it in two sittings and thoroughly enjoyed it.  I have already read the second in the series and have put the third on my TBR if that tells you anything.