Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Books: Tatjana - By Martin Cruz Smith

(Drivebycuriosity) - Russia is in a limbo. The Communist dictatorship of the Soviet Union has officially ended, but a modern democracy has yet to arrive. Today the Russians have few human rights but lots of bureaucracy, corruption & criminality. The defective novel "Tatjana " by Martin Cruz Smith is set in this mess (amazon).

The book is a part of Smith´s Arkady Renko detective series which started with the acclaimed novel "Gorky Park".  Now the Moscow criminal investigator Renko inquires into the death of  journalist "Tatjana", which is officially declared as a suicide. Reno has to deal with the mafia, corrupt colleagues, willful friends and the problems of modern Russia.

it is a slow story. Martin Cruz Smith is more interested in the political, sociologic and psychology aspects than in action. He spiced the novel with bitter & cynical remarks and with a pinch of dark humor. So "Tajana" resembles more the novels of Patricia Highsmith than the thrillers of Raymond Chandler, and there is even a touch of Donna Tart`s "Goldfinch" in it.

If you want a glance of today´s Russia in the shape of a psychological detective story,  "Tatjana" could be the right book for you.

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