Sunday, May 3, 2009
TITLE: FATAL LIES
AUTHOR: FRANK TALLIS
Details: no. 3 Dr. Max Liebermann Mystery
When a young cadet is found dead in a military school in Vienna in 1903, an autopsy seems to suggest death by natural causes. However, there are some strange injuries, some old and healed and some fresh, on the boy's body, and they stimulate Inspector Oskar Reinhardt to investigate further, with the help of his friend Dr. Max Liebermann of course. Very soon they discover a web of bullying, abuse, secrecy and misuse of power with more than just one victim.
At the same time, Max's involvement with Amelia Lydgate appears to have come to an end, leaving him in the grip of strong feelings of jealousy and anger. When he subsequently meets the beautiful and passionate Hungarian violinist Trezska, he quickly falls for her charms. But there is far more to Trezska than meets the eye, and Max could find himself losing more than just his heart.
I wasn't overly impressed with either of the mysteries in this book. However, what ever strength the book lacked in that respect was adequately made up for by the descriptions of the society in Vienna, early in the 20th century. And I do love the way historically correct events and people (like Sigmund Freud) feature in these stories.