* 4.5 stars *
Many people visiting Paris will have taken a tour of the catacombs - that ethereal world beneath the busy streets of the French capital. These are the public parts, accessible for a small fee, but the tourist tunnels are just the beginning. Seventy feet beneath the surface, well below the Métro and the RER, there lies a vast network of mines and tunnels not accessible to the general public.
Some of these tunnels have access to Government buildings, schools, and hospitals. Now, imagine if those tunnels were utilised by a terrorist organisation - using explosives or some noxious substance that could kill those going about their daily business in the buildings and streets above whilst evading detection themselves below!
This is the terrifying scenario that Inspector Khalid Sadiqi of the counter terrorism squad is faced with in City of Dark. The opening scene is at the Val de Grace military hospital where the prime minister has been assassinated. This is a particularly secure facility, but it appears that his killer accessed the building from the catacombs, and also left behind messages taunting his pursuers.
Sadiqi teams up with Canadian engineering student Antonia (Toni) Corrigan in his quest to catch the killer. Toni is an expert on the catacombs, her knowledge is second to none - don’t forget that this claustrophobic world below Paris is a place where it’s easy to get lost and find oneself continually hitting dead ends, and the likelihood of never finding your way out is entirely possible, so Sadiqi definitely needs her knowledge, if he’s to discover the killer’s lair.
This was an exciting and well researched storyline, with much historical and political detail. The surly Sadiqi contrasts with the bubbly and quirky Toni, but though Sadiqi is drawn to her romantically, he’s not entirely sure she’s trustworthy.
Well written, with a frightening but credible scenario. I could see this transferring to the big screen quite easily, and I would be first in the queue to see it!
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City of Dark Kindle Edition
- ASIN : B07SPDBCJ1
- Language : English
- File size : 5299 KB
- Simultaneous device usage : Unlimited
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Not Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 523 pages
- Best Sellers Rank: 1,273,032 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
4.5 out of 5
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Top reviews from other countries
Terrific - would make a brilliant movie!Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 28 November 2019
Page turnerReviewed in the United Kingdom on 19 June 2019
A great story set in a Paris rarely seen by most. Catacombs, Free masonry, jeopardy. A real page-turner.
Brilliant and rareReviewed in Canada on 22 February 2020
The connection between France and Quebec is rarely seen in literature. This book brings it to light. To English Canada, Quebec ranges between a historical artefact and a severe pain in the ass. The story also highlights the sheer corruption of French politics. Not simply money, but control. One line in here stand out. All these years after The Revolution, France is still run by a clique of aristocrats. As one who lived there, you are left with the same question. What breeds such a level of arrogance when nothing in the country's history supports it. The references to Algeria are very telling. In a century of dirty wars, it was one of the most evil, again based on the sense of superiority to emblematic of the French. Living in Algeria after it was all over, one constantly came across the scars and the deep bitterness. Nothing in modern day Bosnia compares with what was evident in Algeria of the late 60s.
A really good read!Reviewed in France on 9 August 2019
This is a great first novel and better than many other detective books I have read recently. The plot is terrific and original, the characters attractive, and the research that has gone into it impressive. While it is perhaps a little bit too long, it is full of fascinating information and I learnt a lot of new things about Paris. In addition, I particularly appreciated the strong female character. I also think it would be excellent material for a film. Highly recommended!
Great new Quebec authorReviewed in Canada on 9 August 2019
The perfect read for the summer, with a fascinating new character involved in French anti-terrorism. A modern renaissance of the great inspector Maigret. Looking forward to future books involving the same characters: both good and bad.