Communicator (communicator) wrote,

Case Histories

I am back in my old routine of walking to work, which means I am listening to audio books again. This week I listened to Case Histories by Kate Atkinson. It was recommended in passing by altariel, because Jason Isaacs with his shirt off turns out to be 'Jackson Brodie', Atkinson's brooding northern detective.

This is the first of the Jackson Brodie books and concerns three murder cases which took place in and around Cambridge decades apart. Each centres on a hidden family story, and all come to some kind of interlocking resolution. It's a good read. It is intricate, it's deftly and expertly written, and has very good female characters. There are more female than male characters and they are diverse and engaging. Also - and this may partly be a function of the reading by Susan Jameson - it is intermittently very funny, in a sad-but-true kind of way. It did make me laugh out loud in places.

It pops along at a good pace too. Compared to the austere Scandinavian murders I have been reading lately it is lively, colourful, and ironic. However, it does have tender emotion.

Most strikingly, Brodie is written to be attractive to a modern woman reader. He is sensible about sex, and gritty and miserable and everything. I was talking to a lecturer in English in the staff room at college this week, and I thought I would test out my theory. I mentioned I was listening to the book, and she was straight in there about how attractive Brodie is. Excellent.

Anyway, definitely recommended if this is the type of thing you like.
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