Top critical review
In two minds about this one.
on 25 October 2016
This book was not at all what I expected. If you are looking for suspense and action, choose another book to read. It has little in common with Agatha Christie except that it is a kind of 'house' mystery. It is narrated in a pedestrian report style. The plot can be seen through from very early on, by any self-respecting crime fiction fan. Despite several points where I thought I would give up reading it, I waded on valiantly to the end. The reasons were that I hope to visit Oslo soon, where the book is set, albeit in the late 60s, and because I'd read in the reviews that it was interesting in relation to the position of Norway in WW2 and the post war years. I didn't learn a lot about Oslo or the War and post-war time, but I learned a little about Norwegian attitudes at the time. I was very glad to reach the end, not only so I could start reading something more exciting, but also because the author wrote a very interesting piece about his aunt who had inspired the book. The writing here, unlike the rest of the book, came to life. I am pleased not to have missed that bit.
I still do not understand what is meant by 'human flies'. Perhaps it was lost in translation. But overall, I am glad I read it.