The hair stands up on the back of my neck and I get an age old feeling in my belly. Like there’s a fight ahead. Like something’s really about to go off….
After convicting a superior for corruption and shooting off a gangster’s Crown Jewels, the career of Hamburg’s most hard bitten state prosecutor, Chastity Riley, has taken a nose dive: she has been transferred to the tedium of witness protection to prevent her making any more trouble. However, when she is assigned to the case of an anonymous man lying under police guard in hospital – almost every bone in his body is broken, a finger cut off, and refusing to speak in anything other than riddles – Chastity’s instinct for the big, exciting case kicks in.
Using all her powers of persuasion, she soon gains her charge’s confidence, and finds herself on the trail to Leipzig, a new ally, and a whole heap of lethal synthetic drugs. When she discovers that a friend and former colleague is trying to bring down Hamburg’s Albanian mafia kingpin single-handedly, it looks like Chas Riley’s dull life on witness protection really has been short lived…. Fresh, fiendishly fast paced and full of devious twists and all the hard boiled poetry and acerbic wit of the best noir, Blue Night marks the stunning start of a brilliant new crime series, from one of Germany’s bestselling authors.
I loved this book, I love Chastity Riley, she is such a great character as are all the other character’s around her. The translation from German to English by Rachel Ward works well. I have read translations from other languages and sometimes there is a slight barrier in some way that the translation can be a bit stilted. But this story flows beautifully. I love the wit.
We begin as Chastity is called in to a case to look after a man who has been badly beaten breaking most of his bones, as well as removing his index finger from his right hand, as he says they obviously didn’t realise he was left handed! But as she drives on her way, her recently acquired car gives up in her. ‘The car’s a heap of junk and my driving’s worse than a cow on ice.’ A quote from the first chapter which made me chuckle, I was hooked.
Chastity is a force to be reckoned with not happy to be babysitting, anxious for her subject to wake so she can ask him his name, who did this. But when he wakes he’s not exactly forthright with answers. Chastity decides to try bribery which still doesn’t get her much further. It’s a slow process, when she does get answers it’s in riddles.
But the story moves on at a fast pace, we get to know some of the other characters, as chapters are interspersed with short paragraphs going back in time of some of the other main people. Calabretti currently nursing a broken heart, Faller an ex colleague who seems to be trying to get the Albanian on his own, Klatsche who owns the Blue Night bar and Chastity’s sort of boyfriend, husband and wife Rocco and Carla. All these characters work.
Chastity and a couple of other characters seem to smoke and drink too much, I would be under the table after the first round. Chastity is a well rounded character with some great quirks, determined to see justice served. The story really does pack a punch. my first time with German noir, but definitely not my last I have the next two books on my shelf to read. I hope there will be many more to come if this one is anything to go on.
So, if you are looking for a new character to follow then I highly recommend you grab a copy of this book. It certainly got ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ out of ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ from me.
Published by #OrendaBooks. Available from all good book retailers.