Friday, November 19, 2010

Elegy for April by Benjamin Black

It's a cold, bleak winter in Ireland, and April Latimer is gone. The question is, where? Phoebe Griffin, April's concerned friend, goes to her father, the somewhat unhinged but brilliant Doctor Quirke. She claims that April is missing and probably dead, although her only proof is that she hasn't seen April in over a week. Nonetheless, Quirke digs a little deeper and finds some disconcerting evidence and telling truths on the scandals of the well-to-do Catholics of Ireland.

I enjoyed the language used in this story, because it made it unnecessary to describe the setting in much detail. He only had to say where they were with a few minor details, and the language painted everything gray by itself. It all sounded bleak and lonely, but beautiful nonetheless. The words read like Robert Frost poetry, lovely but dark and lonely at the same time. The plot was kind of slow, and the main conflict seemed to take a backseat in some parts, but it stayed on where it needed to and wrapped up quite nicely. I also thought that the story was focused more on the characters than the plot, which I enjoyed. There were a lot of third person narratives and not as much movement, which was interesting, but if you're looking for thrills and action, you have to wait until the very end of the story. The twist at the end is killer. I would (and already have) recommended this book to all my friends.

Reviewer Age:13

Reviewer City, State and Country: Fairfax, VA USA