(Received from Netgalley for review.)
I admit to not knowing the first thing about this book before I requested it from Netgalley. But I was intrigued by the cover, with its blood-spattered pinup, and the idea of a murder mystery spanning over a century was right up my alley. And it all starts very strongly. The individual detectives are all quite distinctive from each other. And though I didn’t particularly like two of the four (the 40s detective on the make and the futuristic amnesiac) I quite liked reading the other two’s stories. The repressed Victorian detective was a decent piece of period work, and the present day Muslim detective was by far my favorite character.
And then the ending becomes increasingly out there, and it just wasn’t working for me. Maybe it will work for other readers, and maybe I just wasn’t up for the major twist in tone towards the end. But it also felt a little preachy in the last few pages, and I don’t know if I’d ever be entirely up for that. Still, there’s some solid work here, and an ambitious concept, and I think the writer’s heart is in the right place.