- Paperback: 160 pages
- Publisher: Serpent's Tail; Main 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: 6 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 428,739 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Murder In Memoriam (Five Star Paperback) Paperback – 11 Aug 2005
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?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
Didier Daeninckx's chilling novel created uproar when it was first published in France in 1984. It is 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. In Daeninckx's story, Roger Thiraud, a young history teacher, is also mysteriously killed during this demonstration. Twenty 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.See all Product description
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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.
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.
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.Daeninckx ties together very cleverly a detective procedural with questioning of French mythology.
I would say the characters in the novel are not developed in any way, Dialogue falls flat without tags to identify what characters are doing or thinking as they speak, and the romantic interest appears to be an afterthought.They are like 2 dimensional,flat-pack ciphers that are put together to make the plot unfold from A to B.To counter this the descriptions of events that occurred in reality has the tang of political reportage, replete with a burden of factual accuracy.Daeninckx is a great documenter of reality,a poor purveyor of fictional energies.The book displays the paradox expressed in Hitchcock’s The Wrong Man.Dramatic license is lost in the pursuit of veracity.True stories based on real facts are in conflict with the emotional truths of fiction.
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