Author – Nicci French
Published – 2 July 2015
Genre – Crime fiction
In the interest of getting through some of my backlog of reviews I have taken the executive decision (this is MY blog after all) to write a few shorter reviews. First up – the 5th of the 8 books in the Frieda Klein series.
I surprised myself by really taking to the series after all the previous standalones; I think in Frieda they have created a great and very likeable leading character. Strong and independent she’s been a magnet for trouble and despite leaving the post she held temporarily assisting the police, she has still managed to end up in dire situations. But of course the advantage of setting out the commitment to 8 titles at the beginning means that a long story arc can be plotted through the whole series to offer a little something in each book.
In ‘Friday’ the opening gives us someone else’s point of view of Frieda when a body is discovered with a hospital name bracelet bearing her name. Through this part we see Frieda through other’s eyes and it offers a different perspective, and we can see how being self-contained can come across as aloof, disinterested or even callous.
The body in question is someone who has been close to Frieda and with the backstory from the previous books and a little incriminating evidence, it is inevitable that the police believe that Frieda is responsible. Frieda herself believes that Dean Reeve is to blame and goes on the run to prove her case. She makes a pretty rubbish amateur detective (obviously crime fiction isn’t her first love). It feels quite a sad book, especially seeing Frieda out of her comfort zone and away from the sanctuary of her home.
This feels like a book where the series has reached a tipping point. Suddenly the familiar from the earlier books in the series has been taken away, there are lots of changes in the relationships and this is perhaps setting us up for the final few books. It certainly seems much more like a ‘middle’ book and is perhaps not so easy to pick up without knowing more about the characters.
Many thanks to Penguin for the review copy.