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22 March 2010
Review: THE DEVIL'S FEATHER, Minette Walters
My contribution this week to the crime fiction alphabet is a book that I read some time ago but have never reviewed on this blog.
Published in 2005.
When five women are brutally murdered in Sierra Leone, Reuters journalist Connie Burns comes to believe that the culprit is a foreigner whom she recognises: someone she met, under a different name, in Kinshasa.
Two years later she recognises the same man in Iraq, again living under a different name. Voicing her suspicions to colleagues results in Connie being kidnapped for 3 days.
When she is released apparently unharmed, she refuses to speak about her ordeal and returns to England. The reader is never told explicitly what happened to her but we are left to deduce it from snippets. Seemingly small things now leave Connie subject to panic attacks. She lives as a recluse in Devon but decides to keep investigating the man, and he comes after her.
I found this a difficult read. The story is told through emails and accounts given to others in interviews. As the reader I never felt included in direct disclosures and the events were never really narrated for my benefit. There are two major stories intertwined and by the end I was impatient for it to finish. I felt as my brain had been exercised enough.
[ the "devil's feather" is a woman who stirs a man's interest without realizing it; the unwitting cause of sexual arousal. Connie's captor calls her 'feather'. Connie decides to use this to lure him to England and eliminate him. This puts all her friends and family in danger]
My rating was 4.4
Other books by Minette Walters
The Ice House (1991)
The Sculptress (1993)
The Scold's Bridle (1994)
The Dark Room (1995)
The Echo (1997)
The Breaker (1998)
Acid Row (2001)
The Shape of Snakes (2001)
Fox Evil (2002)
Disordered Minds (2003)
The Devil's Feather (2005)
The Chameleon's Shadow (2007)