Kasa Cotugno's Reviews > Elegy for April

Elegy for April by Benjamin Black
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Mar 06, 2010

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bookshelves: arc, genre-crime-thriller, location-europe-ireland

Wintery Dublin in the mid 50's -- atmospheric,foggy, rainswept, a perfect setting for John Banville's third outing as Benjamin Black. He has said that his two writing selves write in completely different styles, but it it obvious that there is more than the usual talent on tap. Alter egos still arise from the same source. He also admitted that his role model is George Simenon -- shorter sentences, generating a faster pace. There is still a deliberation in the way he paces his story, releasing information only as needed. The mystery here is not so much that of the disappearance of April, a friend of Phoebe, Quirke's daughter, but whether Quirke and Phoebe will close the gap engendered by their past and whether or not he will manage to remain on the wagon. It is not necessary to have read the first in the series, Christine Falls, since there are enough references to enlighten a new reader. I am glad that Banville did not abandon Black after one or two novels as was his original intent, as he becomes more surefooted with successive novels.
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