To Go: 65
31. The Dressmaker — Kate Alcott
32. Spin — Catherine McKenzie
33. The Elegance of the Hedgehog — Muriel Barbery
34. Anna Karenina — Leo Tolstoy
35. A Necessary End — Peter Robinson
Finished reading: June 24, 2013
I don’t know what it is about the summer, but when the weather is hot and school is out, I get the urge to read mystery novels almost exclusively. In 2011, the summer months were when I got addicted to Michael Connelly through the Lincoln Lawyer series. In 2o12, I started reading his Harry Bosch books while making the daily commute to my summer internship. But this summer, after I’d finished The Black Box and caught up on Robert Rotenberg’s series (Stranglehold being the most recent), I had no mysteries to read by authors I knew. So, I thought, I needed to expand. In came A Necessary End. I found it in the BMV and it looked like an acceptable mystery, so I picked it up.
In A Necessary End, a small English town is shaken when a rally protesting the implementation of a nuclear power plant becomes violent, and a police officer from a neighbouring town ends up dead. Detective Chief Inspector Alan Banks, the lead detective on the investigation, is put under the supervision of Superintendent Richard Burgess, a senior officer sent in from London to assist on the case. But Burgess’s nasty tactics and anti-Communist tunnel vision put the investigation’s integrity in jeopardy, and Banks knows the only way to ensure a truly fair outcome is to solve the case himself.
I don’t want to waste too much time on A Necessary End, because it wasn’t more than a run-of-the-mill mystery at best. At worst, it was forgettable, dull, and the literary equivalent of plodding through a damp marsh. Yuck.
If I was interested in anything, it was the political climate during the time period the book was set in: Thatcher was the prime minister, and anti-Liberal, anti-“Commie” sentiments were pervasive. The swirling political tension, and how it affected Burgess and Banks’s police work and their list of suspects, was more compelling to read than the actual mystery, the conclusion of which I figured out within the first half of the novel.
Next book: Envy — Sandra Brown