Posts tagged ‘True Crime’

July 23, 2017

The Adversary by Emmanuel Carrère

by Team Riverside

Paperback, Penguin Random House, £8.99, Out now

A bona-fide stranger-than-fiction story, the twists and turns of re-released true crime sensation The Adversary will have you exclaiming “I don’t believe it!” to no one in particular as you read.Adversary

Beginning with an account of the 1993 murder of a wife and two children by their husband and father, Jean Claude Romand, the narrative then spirals rapidly out of control as the killer – a respected French doctor and member of the World Health Organisation – is revealed to have been living a double life of colossal proportions.

As a tale it’s utterly astonishing; but it’s the moments where author Emmanuel Carrère pauses to reflect on the proceedings – whether he’s tracing Romand’s footsteps while trying to get into his headspace or drawing comparisons between the murderer’s deceased family and his own – that truly affected me. Unexpectedly lyrical and philosophical, his interjections are just as engrossing as the plot, and make sure that the book never feels ghoulish or lurid despite its fixation on a horrific crime. This isn’t writing to titillate – it is measured, respectful and questioning, and all the more powerful for it.

In short, Carrère has crafted nothing less than a modern In Cold Blood. Genuinely unputdownable.

Review by Tom

October 10, 2010

Homicide/The Corner: David Simon

by Matt

Despite the title fonts which suggest otherwise, this book, written prior to the TV show The Wire (which Simon is a co creator of) these books stand up on their own as a 360 degree portrayal of today’s American inner city, as vivid in its attention to the minute details of society  as Tolstoy was in his day. ‘Homicide’ is written from the point of view of the detectives, ‘The Corner’ from those who etch out their meagre livings on the corner. If these were novels they would be described, together, in their scope, attention to vocabulary, themes, as one of the great post 9-11 novel to rival Franzen etc, but, instead, you’ll find them in the ‘True Crime’ section along with the Myra Hindley biographies.