A Frieda Klein Mystery by Nicci French
Review: When a dead and decaying man is found in the apartment of a woman, who seems to believe he is still alive and interacting with her, the police call in psychologist Frieda Klein to do an evaluation. Frieda doesn't believe the woman killed the man, as the police are quick to conclude, but strongly suspects that the reason he was found in her apartment may lead to his killer in Tuesday's Gone, the second mystery in this series by Nicci French.
The dead man is eventually identified as Robert Poole, a man with no past but one who had accumulated a large amount of cash in the bank. At least he had a large amount of cash in the bank; it's gone now, withdrawn just a day or two before he probably died. The people with whom he interacted in the months prior to his death all call him friendly, someone they trusted, even as he conned them out of their savings. After interviewing them, Frieda doesn't have any reason to doubt their sincerity and though the police are trying to close the case as quickly as possible, she keeps coming up with reasons why their likely suspect or current person of interest really isn't either a suspect or interesting. Still, she does believe that it must have been someone Poole connected with that eventually killed him, though the who — and more importantly to her the why — elude her.
The murder mystery in Tuesday's Gone, while quite compelling and of considerable interest, is actually a relatively minor plot point in this book, which seems to be a continuation of the first in the series, Blue Monday (not reviewed here). Readers starting with this book will likely be utterly confused as to what's going on as the current case is constantly intertwined with what is presumably the unsolved, or at best unresolved, case of the previous book. (The two cases seem have little, if anything in common with each other, other than Frieda is involved with both, so it's not quite clear why so much attention to the former is paid here.) Rare it is where books in a series absolutely must be read in order but apparently this is one such case. And, without giving away too much, the book ends on a note that suggests the next in the series has the potential to be just at confusing (if one hasn't read, now, the first two in the series). The situation is really quite unfortunate as (a) the murder mystery storyline, brief as it is here, is well-structured and riveting; and (b) the characters are so well drawn that, like them or not, they are about as real and multi-dimensional as characters get in modern crime fiction. A mixed review overall: terrific premise for a mystery but far too little time spent on actually exploring it.
Acknowledgment: Penguin Group provided a copy of Tuesday's Gone for this review.
Review Copyright © 2013 — Hidden Staircase Mystery Books — All Rights Reserved
Location(s) referenced in Tuesday's Gone: London, England
— ♦ —
Tuesday's Gone by Nicci French — A Frieda Klein Mystery
Publication Date: April 2013
List Price: $27.95
— ♦ —
Page Author: Lance Wright
Site Publisher: Mysterious Reviews
Mysterious Reviews is a Division of
The Hidden Staircase Mystery Books
and a Business Unit of the
Omnimystery Family of Mystery Websites