THE ESKIMO SOLUTION BY PAS­CAL GARNIER

Crime Scene - - POST MORTEM - BY PAS­CAL GARNIER By MARK BEAU­MONT

With the av­er­age Haringey stu­dio flat now cost­ing as much as the re­newal of Tri­dent, mean­ing that no‑one can af­ford a house un­til nana carks it, it’s a mir­a­cle that no­body has yet started a ser­vice to off el­derly rel­a­tives. Par­en­tokil, say, or Gran-dead. The chil­dren’s au­thor pro­tag­o­nist of The Eskimo Solution imag­ines Louis – the anti-hero of his first crime novel, pre­sented as a book-within-a-book – do­ing just that, sur­rep­ti­tiously mur­der­ing the par­ents of peo­ple strug­gling for money like a psy­cho­pathic Se­cret Santa. The prob­lem is, dis­tracted from his Nor­mandy writ­ing re­treat by el­derly neigh­bours, friends in trou­ble and his girl­friend’s Loli­ta­like daugh­ter, his life and fic­tion be­come blurred at the seams.

So eco­nom­i­cal, fast-paced and fleet­ing as to be al­most dream-like, this lat­est in a se­ries of trans­la­tions of novel­las by the late French thriller writer Pas­cal Garnier treats its sud­den bursts of vi­o­lence as al­most semi-comic asides to its dual tales of creep­ing psy­cho­log­i­cal dark­ness.

Oft likened to J.G. Bal­lard and Ge­orges Si­menon, Garnier’s prose is brisk and oc­ca­sion­ally daz­zling, whip­ping by so fast you barely have time to register its warped, un­holy mind­set suck­ing you in. Ten years af­ter its French pub­li­ca­tion, The Eskimo Solution’s chill­ing trea­tise on the eco­nom­ics of slaugh­ter is more timely than ever.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.