Today my guest reviewer, Claire Knight, shares her thoughts on The Executioner Weeps by Frederic Dard.
It was fate that led her to step out in front of the car. A quiet mountain road. A crushed violin. And a beautiful woman lying motionless in the ditch.
Carrying her back to his lodging on a beach near Barcelona, Daniel discovers that the woman is still alive but that she remembers nothing – not even her own name. And soon he has fallen for her mysterious allure. She is a blank canvas, a perfect muse, and his alone. But when Daniel travels to France in search of her past, he slips into a tangled vortex of lies, depravity and murder. The Executioner Weeps is a macabre thriller about the dangerous pitfalls of love.
Claire’s Rating: 3/5
Ever since introducing myself to translated crime last year with Six Four by Hideo Yokoyama (Japanese) and The Murdered Banker by Augusto De Angelis (Italian), I’ve been trying to try crime stories from different countries to get a flavour of the various crime writing cultures. So when I saw The Executioner Weeps by Frederic Dard, a late French crime writer, on Netgalley, I jumped at the chance to read some French crime.
This is a slow burner that starts with a bit of a bang, quite literally. Our main man Daniel is involved in a car accident which leaves him with a smashed violin case and a young woman with no name or memory. After this initial excitement, the story goes along at quite a gentle pace as Daniel is desperate to help this woman regain her lost memories or at least remember her name! I really felt sorry for this nameless girl; the thought of losing my memories entirely to the extent I don’t even know my own name is a scary one and one that I hope never becomes a reality.
It wasn’t a bad story, it has a few moments of excitement – #nospoilers here – but it didn’t totally enthral me like a lot of the crime thrillers I’ve read. I might read another offering from Monsieur Dard but I will be looking for other translated crime before that – no it hasn’t put me off!
Many thanks to Pushkin Vertigo and Netgalley for my copy of The Executioner Weeps.
Thanks Claire! What do you think, #bookjunkies? Does this sound like something you might want to read? If so, click the book below and grab yourself a copy!