by Peter Temple.

Inspector Stephen Villani is the head of Homicide. He is called to a swanky hotel where a young woman — a girl — is lying dead. Possibly a prostitute. However, the hotel owners don’t want to make a big deal of the death. They respect their clients’ privacy and given the recent opening, want it to be big. And news like this is detrimental to their prospects. So begins a cover up. And more murders. Villani and his team attempt to solve the murders while at the same time, he has to deal with personal issues — a failing (or failed?) marriage, a 15 year old daughter gone astray, a brother who is possibly dealing with bikies and drugs and a father who won’t leave his property despite bushfire threats. The whole case gets very political with the important people possibly involved and trying to get Villani off the case. To no avail.

This book won the Miles Franklin Award and the Victorian Premier Literary award in 2010. All I found myself thinking was — how??? Am I missing something? The book didn’t do much for me at all. There were too many characters and I got lost as to who was who. It seems like a fast paced action that probably would be more suited to the TV than to a book because you just get lost. Villani’s character is probably the only one that seems to grow and that the reader gets an insight into. Everyone else is just there. I don’t know if that makes much sense. But honestly, I struggled to read this book and even the ending wasn’t worth it for me.

I give it a rating of 1. If you have read this book, please tell me if I’m missing something!!!

Until next time,


P.S. This has been cross-posted on my personal blog


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