Of Fever and Blood-Sire Cédric
novel in translation
"This fast-paced supernatural thriller is a race against time to defeat a deadly force. Of Fever and Blood begins at the end of an investigation. Inspector Svärta, an albino profiler, and her colleague Vauvert, solve a series of sadistic ritual murder cases, and the supposed culprits—the Salaville brothers—are killed in a standoff. However, one year later, the killings start again, this time in Paris. All forensic evidence points to the brothers, but how could that be?"
Another surprise enjoy. I'm not usually drawn in by supernatural thrillers but once Cédric sets the background, he plunges you into this complex narrative that keeps you going. The supernatural aspects were really well handled-like they stood up to scrutiny and remained really creepy. They elevated what would have been a good thriller/mystery into something that really sticks with you, for better or for worse. The details of the crimes were grisly and not for those with weak stomachs but did not seem gratuitous. They didn't seem exaggerated and I could not imagine writing them out (like other books I've read).
Above all this grisly, creepy grit rises a truly compelling detective. She remains opaque (as does her partners-the character development was not the largest priority) but is a mystery in herself. She is vulnerable (you realize things about her that takes a bit for her to get) but nevertheless is tough as stones. I really enjoyed her as a character as she throws herself past sexism and her own past. Then there was somewhat of a grim humor as the characters had to reconcile the supernatural and the procedural demands of the police. One of the main detectives basically has to operate outside of the law and it is this awareness of the reality of an investigation that makes the novel suitably creepy-this is the real world these supernatural aspects are affecting.