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Marr, Chris - 'The Director'
Hardback: 224 pages (Dec. 2008) Publisher: Robert Hale Ltd ISBN: 0709087195

This second book by this impressive new author tells the story of Leonard Fleason, who is employed as a film critic by a newspaper, owned by his father-in-law. He has a very contented sort of life, with a good income from doing something he really loves. He has aspirations of writing his own film screenplay and spends a lot of time dreaming of doing just that.

His perfect world, however is shattered, when he discovers that his wife is having an affair and in an attempt to check her out, he employs a private investigator. He then decides to stage a burglary. Following this, he has the perfect excuse to have a burglar alarm system installed, with motion detectors and in this digital age, a secret, very tiny, wireless CCTV camera, in the master bedroom. He returns home, following a trip away to the Cannes Film Festival, for his newspaper. He decides to review the film from the CCTV camera and is shocked to see his wife making love in the marital bed to a lover who is not the man that the private investigator suggested, but another.

He decides to confront his wife and her lover with the film by inviting them both to dinner. Leonard, when he prepares the meal (he does all the cooking) decides to tamper with the food and put a harmless poison in it. The lover, however, unfortunately becomes very ill and subsequently dies and Leonard is arrested for his apparent murder. Leonard's troubles couldn't get any worse but there is a very successful finale.

This mystery is very entertaining and a real page turner. It is written with humour and has lots of surprising twists and turns. Each chapter has the title of a film which suggest its subject matter. The author's first novel, THE LADY OF THE MANOR, was written with a historical setting, whereas this one is set in the present. I think this is an even better novel, than his first one and I look forward to reading further ones in the future as this novelist improves even further.

Terry Halligan, England
April 2008

Details of the author's other books with links to reviews can be found on the Books page.
More European crime fiction reviews can be found on the Reviews page.

last updated 7/06/2009 16:54