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Siren of the Waters

A Commander Jana Matinova Mystery by Michael Genelin

Siren of the Waters by Michael Genelin

Review: We first meet Jana Matinova, the protagonist in Siren of the Waters the first book in Michael Genelin's new series as she examines the site of a car crash that killed seven. Her investigation takes her all over Europe, twisting and turning like a coiled snake, and Genelin gives us just enough clues to keep the pages turning. Matinova has great depth to her character, and we get to know her better through interwoven flashes into her past. A few of these slow the plot down a bit, but they're valuable in our understanding of who she is and how she ticks. She has suffered a great deal at the hands of the prior regime that destroyed her family but even that hasn't totally damaged her inner core of determination and a need for justice. She tries her best to separate her personal feelings from her work, but possesses too much humanity for her to always succeed.

Genelin has created well-rounded background characters as well. I particularly like the relationship between Matinova and her boss, Trokan. Their banter speaks to a long and caring relationship, and he helped her as much as she could while she suffered the state's scrutiny into the lives of her husband, herself and their child.

It's clear that Genelin knows Europe well. His vivid descriptions of the locations in the story make one feel as if one is there with Matinova and her fellow investigators. He's also done his research on how different police forces work. While Slovakia calls itself capitalist, the country hasn't fully shed its communist tendencies as we see in the careful way Matinova treads while doing her work. Overall, this is a wonderful story, and I look forward to the next Matinova book.

Special thanks to Katherine Petersen for contributing her review of Siren of the Waters.

Acknowledgment: Soho Press provided an ARC of Siren of the Waters for this review.

Review Copyright © 2008 — Katherine Petersen — All Rights Reserved
Reprinted with Permission

Selected reviews of other mysteries by this author

Mystery Book Review: Dark Dreams by Michael GenelinDark Dreams
Soho Crime (Hardcover), July 2009
ISBN-13: 9781569475577; ISBN-10: 1569475571

Location(s) referenced in Siren of the Waters: Slovakia

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Siren of the Waters by Michael Genelin

Siren of the Waters by A Commander Jana Matinova Mystery

Publisher: Soho Crime
Format: Hardcover
ISBN-13: 978-1-56947-484-6
Publication Date:
List Price: $24.00

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