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Murder In Memoriam (Five Star Paperback) Paperback – 11 Aug 2005


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Product details

  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Serpent's Tail; 5-star Ed edition (11 Aug. 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1852427957
  • ISBN-13: 978-1852427955
  • Product Dimensions: 12.7 x 1 x 19.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 423,683 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

?Murder in Memoriam is the kind of book that begins to restore one?s confidence in the detective story. Not only has Daeninckx produced a particularly intriguing narrative, but he has found a way to give this narrative a satisfying significance... A touch of moral vision and a pinch of righteous anger work wonders? Nick Hornby ?How many detective stories have helped a country confront its past? Murder In Memoriam has certainly done that? Guardian ?Didier Daeninckx is a novelist, magician and archaeologist prince... a frightening book? Jerome Charyn ?Serves as a tap on the shoulder - a necessary reminder that what is dead is not buried, and what is buried is, unfortunately, not dead? Derek Raymond

About the Author

Born in 1949, Didier Daeninckx lives in Paris. Recognised as France's leading left-wing mystery writer, his work is translated into all European languages. His 1984 novel Murder in Memoriam forced the French government to try Nazi collaborators, led to a life of imprisonment for Paul Touvier and made President Mitterrand declare 16 July a day of national reflection on fascism and racism.

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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Officer Dibble VINE VOICE on 16 Jan. 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
It is 1984 and young Inspector Cadin is based in Toulouse. He must use all his charm and brass neck to solve an apparently random street shooting. His only clue is the rather strange circumstances of the death of the victim's father who died in riots in Paris in 1961.

This detective story cum police procedural is really cover for a twin-pronged, searing attack on post-War France. It attempts to redress the dubious concensus of silence that fell over both Vichy and the Algerian War.

The description of events at a pro Algerian demonstration in Paris in 1961 were so shocking that I dismissed them. It is understandable why this novel was political dynamite in 1984, yet the events portrayed are now largely officially recognised.

This is an unsettling, provocative read. Shortish and very difficult to ignore from the first page. Not the greatest of pure crime novels if that's what you're after. Is this the sub-genre of 'political crime writing'? Whichever, it did act as a catalyst for further reading.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Feanor on 20 Aug. 2009
Format: Paperback
Didier Daeninckx wrote Murder in Memoriam in 1984 and caused a sensation in France. The French have a long history of self-analysis, even if little concrete comes out of it. The collaboration with the Nazis is something that was hidden in bureaucratic archives soon after the Liberation; the brutal suppression of the Algerian independence movement is another blot on their history. The French like to claim that once someone is French, their origins are irrelevant - a fine theory but much remiss in practice. So when crowds of Algerians decided to demonstrate in 1961 against French policy in North Africa, the police clubbed them to death in their hundreds; the ensuing news embargo ensured that the population at large remained ignorant of the truth, and continued to believe that the protestors had been violent (what else to expect from those uncivilised Beurs?). A French teacher on his way home is shot during the demonstrations; twenty years later, his son meets a similar death. Inspector Cadin, an iconoclast if ever there was one, pursues the investigation with single-mindedness, and uncovers dirt on monumental scale suppressed by the powers-that-be. Because it is France, justice can often be denied in favour of power. But Daeninckx is as left-wing an author as they come, and makes no apologies for his revulsion for this kind of national anomie; small wonder that his revelation of the terrible truths of 1961 and earlier created so much angst and outrage among his countrymen. This is a book well worth a read.
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By technoguy TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 12 Mar. 2014
Format: Paperback
Murder in Memoriam is a thriller with a political edge.Set against the backdrop of a demonstration in Paris in 1961,which resulted in the deaths of hundreds of Algerians at the hands of the police.Roger Thiraud,a young,innocent history teacher, is also mysteriously killed during this demonstration.20 years later,Bernard,his son,is murdered in Toulouse while on holiday with his girlfriend.To find the connection between the murders,Daeninckx’s hero Inspector Cadin must delve into the secret history and devastating compromises of wartime politics.Murder in Memoriam is a tense and unsettling indictment of France’s hidden past.

Cadin is obsessive in his pursuit of the truth and has a habit of making enemies:-
- You have the knack of getting your nose into the thickest s***, Inspector, but you don’t get yourself out by stirring it…
- How then?
- By dropping others in it.
Nevertheless,Cadin is a likeable figure,fearless in his probing grasp of unrelated events.Causing considerable danger to himself. He has a habit of falling in love with victims of crime.What were these two innocents onto,let’s have a look.

What struck me about the book is its sharpness and perception about two cover-ups in French recent history,the killing of peaceful Algerian protesters against French actions in the Algerian War in Paris 1961, which is a very taboo subject;and then the period of Vichy government’s collaboration with the Nazis and the transport of Jews to the extermination camps from France.The details given about the night of the killing of unarmed protesters is truly graphic.To write about a subject formerly buried so openly is ground-breaking and caused a sensational response.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
French crime novelists often don't waste much time in drawing their characters in detail --- the number of crime novels turned successfully into bandes dessinees indicates how they like to concentrate on story rather than elaborate pen portraits (see J-P Manchette for instance)Affaire N Gustro (Folio Policier). That works fine for the addicted reader -- especially so when the story has some real substance in the plot. But omission of detail occasionally leads to a feeling of emptiness not long afterwards. Murder in Memoriam is a bit like that. The plot -- as has been observed by others -- apparently caused a furore in France when it was first published but it remains strangely undeveloped given some of the indications in the first chapters. And the absence of detail in the characters then leads to a feeling of mild dissatisfaction on completion -- especially as there are huge clues to the denouement flagged early on.

But it's a good read nonetheless -- although a lesser book than it might have been if it had carried the promise of its early chapters.
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