If I knew that detective thrillers were this good, I should have checked them out more seriously long time ago. It seems that a lot of my fave books on this list involve a mystery of some sort. Furthermore I’m finding it difficult to figure out who the killer is, something which I used to solve in the past. Oh yes it’s also my second Greek author (the first being Nikos Kazantakis)
Inspector Costas Haritos is one fantastic protagonist. Sarcastic , stubborn and obsessive he goes through life with the delicacy of a bulldozer, however when it comes to his job he is a natural. Plus he has a heart of gold despite his gruffness. He is a bundle of contradictions and yet always gets his man.
An Albanian couple are found slashed and the killer is caught and says that it was a crime of passion. But according to a TV journalist things run deeper. Haritos is now curious and starts up an investigation, with some strange discoveries.
Things get worse when the journalist is found murdered and her successor is also killed a few days later. Now Haritos has to hunt for the journalists’ killer AND uncover the Albanian’s hidden agenda. This leads him to a media war and an underground organization.
Although the plot is complex and full of loops, Markaris (through Haritos) seems to be criticising modern Greek society and how it’s culture is being lost by a lazy generation and this seems to be one of the focal points. Also Haritos laments the fact that other races have donated in this loss of Greek culture and yet he supports it as well ( told you he’s full of contradictions)
For a novel which treats serious issues, there is quite a lot of humour in it and there were quite a few times I chuckled to myself. Costas is not dissimilar to Bukowski’s Hank Chinaski, another literary character I like so I was definitely enjoyable. It’s also addictive so make sure you have some free time when tackling this well constructed and intriguing novel.