Greeks Bearing Gifts – Philip Kerr, 2018
… in my experience you can’t be too careful when it comes to a past you are trying to shake off like a bad cold.
It is 1957 and the world is still trying to cure the hangover of the WWII. The Germans, either responsible or not, still carry on their shoulders with the guilt of the Holocaust. Detective Bernie Gunther amongst them. As much as he managed to stay out of the party during the whole Nazi era and with no innocent blood on his hands, he knows that he cannot be exactly proud of his past.
He has decided to leave his past behind, to lay low and let the time do his job. His new identity as Christof Ganz may work for some but he was a remarkable cop in Munich and there are individuals with a good memory for faces and names. An old acquaintance will offer him a new job which he won’t have other alternative but to accept and where his outstanding skills as a homicide detective can be of use.
“Claims adjuster” is just a polite way of describing someone who’s paid to find out if people are lying.
As expected, his good eye and sharp mind will be praised by his boss who will give him a new assignment in Athens which will result in a new risky adventure.
‘The Doris’ would be just another unfortunate boat shrunk with a juicy insurance to claim, but not when Bernie is in charge of assessing the facts and before he realises, he will be in the middle of a twisted and intricate plot and facing his past once again.
For all those who have followed closely this amazing character created by Philip Kerr, this story results likely one of his most sophisticated narrations. No doubt that this book was a great closure for Bernie Gunther’s tales.
With a heavy gut is that I write this brief review which is also to present my respects for one of my favourite authors. May rest in Peace, Philip Kerr (1956-2018).
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