Meet Garvie Smith. Highest IQ ever recorded at Marsh Academy. Lowest ever grades. What is the point, anyway. Life sucks. Nothing ever happens. Until Chloe Dow's body is pulled from a pond. Detective Inspector Singh is already on the case. Ambitious, uptight, methodical he is determined to solve the mystery and get promoted. He does not need any assistance from notorious slacker, Smith. Or does he?
I liked the premise for this book, after all, how many fun stories happen due to someone having to team up with someone their not hugely happy about? The cover caught my eye quite easily and every mystery is like a maze is it not? Plenty of twists and turns and dead ends, hidden things and then finally you reach the exit aka. figure out who, how, what and possibly the why. I do get a bit tired of the genius who can't be bothered and is cocky as anything trope and so struggled to enjoy the character of Garvie.
This story does hit on some hard notes, so if you can't handle a book that touches on paedophilia, rape and of course, murder, then this isn't the book for you. At least though, the author doesn't make it any more than it needs to be, you know how some feel the need to put every detail in, this one doesn't, and so you're left understanding and knowing without being handed too much. Starting off I found this a difficult book to get into, it took about a quarter of the book before I was really interested. Once I got into it more I managed to breeze through it and finish it off in good timing.
I'm not in a rush to read this again but I will hang on to it for the kids to read when they're old enough.
I picked this book up to read it as a challenge. The first thing that drew my eye was the cover. I liked the bright yellow, that looked a bit like a game board or a Pacman screen. The back of the book had a blurb that made the book sound quite interesting. I was expecting a bit of a murder mystery/thriller. I also expected a bit of Sherlock anti-social clue uncovering
The first few times opening the book, I put it down quickly. That first paragraph just wasn't grabbing me and insisting on being read. I didn't like the main character in it and I was a bit shocked that Garvie was male as well. For some reason I had expected a girl. When you read the blurb, there is no indication whether Garvie is a girl or a boy, so I guess that's why. I was also a little worried about the size of the book. This one is over 400 pages.
On the third attempt at reading this, I stuck to it. Once I was past that initial exchange with Garvie and his mother and once Garvie moved outside to where the action was about to start, I was definitely warming to the story. By the time the police arrive, I was hooked in. So despite those three or so training wheel pages, the rest was a steady race to the end.
I found that I was picking the book up, any chance I could get. Then one evening as I had the house largely to myself I just sat and read for two hours until the mystery was solved and the book concluded. What a ride! I had several theories on the go. About two thirds of the book through they had a suspect and then another popped up. I had suspicions which proved to be so close but yet not on the money. The real baddie was a shock to me, and that is what made it such a good read. I was guessing and wondering right up to the end.
As I was reading I kept thinking to myself two thoughts. The first was I hope this isn't a once off, and that I wanted to read more like this with Garvie as the hero. The second thing I thought was I hope they make this into a movie, because it would make for a good watch! I'm very glad I read this and I can't wait to see the next book released now.
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"Character - the willingness to accept responsibility for one's own life - is the source from which self respect springs."
Joan Didion (1934 - ), 'Slouching Towards Bethlehem'