Sunday, October 05, 2014

Peter Robinson. Friend of the Devil (2008)

     Peter Robinson. Friend of the Devil (2008) A wheelchair-bound woman is murdered; that’s Cabbot’s case. A girl is raped and strangled; that’s Banks’s case. Although these two crimes occur at opposite ends of Banks’s patch, they do connect eventually. Dual plots that intersect are Robinson’s speciality, as is the on-going soap opera of his principal characters. Banks and Cabbot both lonesome after their break-up, but neither can find a way to reconcile. The consequences of old crimes at first interfere with investigation the provide the break.
     A competent performance by Robinson, but not as engaging as his earlier works. He’s now a bankable writer, so his publishers give him leeway to digress and expand secondary plots. Some of these are truncated. Some scenes are merely plot points, and lack the suggestion of deeper currents and complex interwoven back stories that are Robinson’s forte. The psychology of one perpetrator is barely plausible. It’s this contrast between well done and perfunctory writing that grates. The overall effect is uneven. Or maybe I’ve come to expect to much from this series. **

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