Thursday, 17 December 2015

Stasi Child by David Young


review by Maryom
 When the dead body of a teenage girl is discovered close to the Berlin Wall, Karin Muller of Kripo, the detective branch of East Germany's People's Police, is called in to investigate. First appearances suggest the girl was trying to escape from West to East Berlin - a strikingly unusual occurrence in a city where everyone is trying to move the other way! - but evidence soon disproves the theory, and Muller finds herself on a chase across East Germany, tracking down a conspiracy reaching up to the highest ranks of the security service. Muller's investigation is part helped and part hindered by her counterpart in the Stasi, and further derailed by the Stasi's interest in her husband's behaviour and her own relationship with her deputy Werner Tilsner.
Set in East Berlin in 1975 in the days when the Wall still divided the city, this thriller has some of the aspects of  Martin Cruz Smith's Gorky Park - a corpse disfigured to make identification difficult, if not impossible, the rivalry and uneasy co-operation between police and state security, and a cover-up sanctioned from on high. Sadly it didn't grab me in the same way. It started really well, but telling part of the story of the point of view of another teenage girl involved in the events gave away too many pointers too soon and somehow, as what happened leading up to the death was revealed, events became less believable.



Maryom's review - 3 stars
Publisher - Twenty7/Bonnier

Genre - adult, crime thriller

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