Oh, how much I love reading a good, fast-paced thriller. If it has an interesting international touch, the better...
Double Identity by Alison Morton was a pleasant surprise. I had the chance to read a short abstract of the plot, but I was not prepared for the full package of action every couple of paragraphs. I´ve read it in one sitting without taking too much care of what was happening in my immediate reading and non-fictional reality. I simply could not give up following Mélisende´s search for the reason and the person who killed her fiancé, while sleeping in a hotel room in a private hotel in London.
The story starts as a relatively private crime: Gérard, a trader of not too much importance, is discovered dead by night, following an injection with a mysterious substance. She is the first suspect. Mélisande is not a noone. Born in wealth pertaining from the pre-Revolutionary France, with a British-born mother and a father owning a castle, she has an adventurous life of herself, with a very active past working in the special operations division of the French Army intelligence. She just gave up her military career in order to start a new life with her partner. It was not meant to be and she is forced to get back in the field.
Tracing back his boyfriend´s murder, there are octopus-like connections leading to ´non-friendly´ outside of the EU countries, revealing various inimities and institutional ironies within the EU itself. One may need a bit of political backgrund to fully taste the jokes and fine allusions, but not necessarily.
The story developes in a fast pace, but as in the case of any respectable good thriller, only the very last pages will reveal the culprits and the amplitude of the criminal connections.
Although I´ve felt a couple of times that the dialogues are not necessarily at the same audacity with the descriptive moments, there is an entincing way of creating the suspense, with the sentences becoming shorter and as focused as arrows when there is action coming up or unfolding. The literary effects are particularly good.
There are a lot of characters brought to life in this story, not all of them clear enough or memorable enough, but the main ones are introduced in a very detailed way, with a strong social and national background which define their motivations as well as their social status.
In times of political troubles and strange social outbursts, Double Identity by Alison Morton offers a glimpse into the tensed movements taking place behind the closed doors and windows of the European financial and political scene. Those fascinated by this realm, as I do, will be delighted in this book.
Rating: 4 stars
Disclaimer: Book offered part of a blog book tour, by the opinions are, as usual, my own