Sunday, January 19, 2020

Review of "Brutality: A Fina Ludlow Novel," by Ingrid Thoft

Review of

Brutality: A Fina Ludlow Novel, by Ingrid Thoft ISBN 9780399171185

Four out of five stars

 Fina Ludlow is a private investigator that among other things works with and for her father. The relationship between Fina and her parents is not a loving one by any means, her father treats her as a lowly employee whose only reason for existence is to bring business, revenue and profits to his law firm. Fina has siblings and their relationships to the parents are similar to hers.

 Liz Barone is a former soccer player at New England University, and she is in the process of suing the university for what she is claiming is cognitive decline due to repeated head injuries she suffered while playing for the university. She is attacked in her kitchen and suffers serious injuries, which ultimately prove fatal. Not happy with the actions of the police, Liz’s mother hires Fina to dig into the circumstances of Liz’s death and hopefully uncover the culprit(s).

 Fina’s tactics are simple, interview, re-interview and politely harass all people where their name has popped up in her inquiries. There is little text devoted to deep thought on the part of Fina, she openly admits to having an “annoy with questions” style of investigation. Even if she has to interrupt the course of their lives and inject conflict. It reached the point where I found her tactics annoying, developing empathy for all the people she harassed.

 There is no gunplay or significant physical conflict in this story, so if you enjoy that style of detective novel, you will be disappointed. Fina ultimately solves the case, so if you are a fan of the female detective that restricts herself to being a pain in the sit-down to almost all players, this is a book for you.

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