Pieter Van In, Book # 2
October 31st 2001
October 20, 2021 October 23, 2021
Beat the Backlist, Cloak and Dagger, Finishing The Series, Library Love, The Backlist Reader, Virtual Mount TBR
One quiet snow-covered Sunday morning in Bruges, a prominent business executive is found dead in the streets, apparently due to an alcoholic hemorage, but for Inspector Van In, there is a something about the autopsy that does not add up. When he questions the businessman's friend, a Dutchman, he too is found dead the next morning, burned to death in a house fire.
When there is an explosion in the middle of a popular tourist area in downtown Bruges, Van In strives to find the connection between the three incidents, but no one is coming forward to claim responsibility for this terrorist attack. Just an anonymous letter to the police, threatening more bombings--unless they cooperate with a series of demands that would undermine the entire city government.
Aided by the spunky and beautiful assistant DA Hannelore Maartens, Inspector Van In finds himself enmeshed in the case that threatens not just the lives of countless of innocent people, but the heart of the city he loves.
What I think
Second book in the series dedicated to Van In, a commissioner from a small town in Flanders called Bruges. This time the commissioner has to investigate an unclear death, statues and monuments that someone wants to blow up in the city and history that goes back to Nazism.
The case is interesting but the commissioner makes the book heavy. It is also true that there are unpronounceable names for us (as I read in some comments), but this is the beauty of the various languages of the world and honestly it didn’t bother me, I just didn’t pronounce them. What bothers me are the untranslated parts in German, French and Dutch. There are notes at the end of the book, why not put notes for the translations as well?
I don’t like Van In. He is a drunkard and smoker as well as a traitor and criminal (sorry but a policeman who pays an escort is a criminal) so I really don’t like him as a leading figure and unfortunately I still have two books to read (because I’ve bought them already, since 4 years ago). If he doesn’t improve in the next two books, I won’t finish the series.
Too bad because when it comes to Nazis I usually like whatever I read, but not here. The whole thing is very boring, the solution not very surprising and from the beginning you know who the guilty one is. Which sometimes is fine, but it depends on how it all works out, here this expedient of already knowing the culprit is not exploited to the fullest.