This is the second book in the Frieda Klein series of Nicci French. My attention in both the first and this second one is more focussed on the victims and the people, rather than on Frieda Klein, which I think is the purpose of the writers’ duo. I’m trying my best to describe Frieda Klein: she’s slim built, shoulder-length hair, loves to walk around the city and to tell its history. She avoids talking about her private life, strongly motivated woman and sometime, she sounds cold. Her deceased father was also a doctor, in a party, whenever someone found out about his profession and then told him his pain, he would tell him to close his eyes and stick out his tongue, then he would go away and start a new conversation with someone else.
In this serie, the story is about an anonymous man who has been found dead inside of the house of a mentally disturbed woman named Michelle Doyce. Asking her questions is an almost impossible task, hence, detective Karlsson asked Frieda for help. With the help of hints that are found in her house, they try to find clues. When all hopes seem to be given up, Frieda meets Jozef Morozov again who, looking at the piece of an advertisement folder, tells her what the handwritten code notes mean which helps her find out that the victim is a handyman named Robert Poole (his name reminds me of one of the detectives in TV series “Death in Paradise”, Richard Poole).
They track his family down, Karlsson and Yvette pay a visit to inform them about their son. His brother, whom they talk to, looks at them in unbelief. Turn out, Robert Poole had passed away a few years ago, which means that the victim had stolen his identity, so, they all are back to square one: who is this deceased man? They decide to collect all opinions from people who have been in touch with him. But, the more they get to know about him, the more question they have: “Ok, seriously, who the hell is this anonymous man??? Is he a handyman? A garden-designer? Or a trainer?” Nevertheless, there are a few things in common: when talking about Robert Poole, they all say that he is friendly, and attentive. Robert Poole is a crook who did his job quite well.
Intrigued to read? Does my description above sound like it’s an interesting read? Don’t be deceived. While the idea of the story is interesting, it’s very lengthy with a lot of unnecessary plots that distract me from focussing on the suspects and the victim. This book has 53 chapters and I find it quite boring. Just as any other boring thriller novel, the most exciting plots happen in the last few chapters. Nevertheless, there’s an important discovery, which correlates with the first book that I won’t reveal 😉
If you happened to read this second book before having read the first one, this book may confuse you; So, if you have the same ugly opinion as I do about this second book, don’t underestimate the first one! It’s packed with exciting and hilarious plots. So, if you haven’t read the first one, read it.
Psychotherapist Frieda Klein thought she was done with the police. But once more DCI Karlsson is knocking at her door.
A man’s decomposed body has been found in the flat of Michelle Doyce, a woman trapped in a world of strange mental disorder. The police don’t know who it is, how he got there or what happened – and Michelle can’t tell them. But Karlsson hopes Frieda can get access to the truths buried beneath her confusion.
Painstakingly, Frieda uncovers a possible identity for the corpse: Robert Poole, a jack of all trades and master conman. But the deeper Frieda and Karlsson dig into Poole’s past, the more of his victims they encounter – and the more motives they find for murder. Meanwhile, violent ghosts from Frieda’s own past are returning to threaten her.
Unable to discover quite who is telling the truth and who is lying, they know they are getting closer to a killer. But whoever murdered Poole is determined to stay free – and anyone that gets too close will meet the same fate.