This is book five in the detective/psychological thriller series featuring psychotherapist Dr. Frieda Klein, who is the occasional collaborator of London Detective Chief Inspector Malcolm Karlsson.
This book begins with the discovery of a male corpse in the Thames, wearing a hospital band labeled Dr. F. Klein. This leads the police to Frieda, who identifies the body as that of Sandy Holland, her former lover. The police, especially those hostile to Frieda as well as to Karlsson, immediately suspect Frieda, although one has to wonder why they would think she would identify herself so plainly if she had murdered someone. When it becomes clear that the police intend to arrest Frieda, she goes into hiding, with the goal of finding out who actually did kill Sandy.
Discussion: Who Frieda is and what she wants continue to elude us. While Frieda has gotten better at asking for help, one wonders why her friends are so loyal to her; she gives so little of herself to them.
Evaluation: I can’t decide if I have reconciled myself to Frieda being so enigmatic, or if I am tired of it; perhaps a little of each. The authors (Nicci French is the pseudonym for the writing team of husband and wife Nicci Gerrard and Sean French) have apparently decided to keep her character opaque. In this book, I also think they did not come up with a good enough motive for the actual guilty person to have turned into a killer. Still, in spite of its faults, the authors have kept the series interesting enough, and I’m hoping to last through the end of the “week” in this series (one presumes Saturday and Sunday are to come).
Published in the U.S. by Penguin Books, 2016