Little Sister – David Hewson

This is the third of the author’s series about Dutch Detective Pieter Vos (my reviews of the others are here and here) and continues the previous high standards.

The story is about two surviving sisters (Kim and Mia Timmers) whose parents and a sister were brutally murdered ten years previously. In the aftermath, these survivors were held responsible for killing someone: the lead singer of The Cupids, a world famous local band. Apparently, they believed he was the one who killed their family. Since then, the girls have been cooped up in the psychiatric facility at Marken, and are now due for release. They have never been beyond the institution walls in the last ten years, and any release will be challenging. They will need close support, time in a half way home, and lots of hard work if they are to make it back into society. But things do not go that well…

I’ll leave the rest of the tale for you to discover for yourselves. It’s enough to know that the odd dead body turns up, and Pieter Vos and his colleagues are on the case. They will peek behind the curtain, and see what evil lurks there.

Of the three books, this was – marginally – not quite as sharp as the others. Oh it’s a good read, and thoroughly entertaining. But somehow the characterization of the girls didn’t completely convince me. I’m not saying it’s bad; just that it did not work for me. A clear case of personal taste. It may be that because I correctly guessed where the story was going, this weakened the characters in my eyes. However, the rest of the characters more than passed muster. And the quality of the writing remained as high as ever.

I continued to enjoy the author’s deft touches at putting enough local color into the story so as to root it firmly in the Netherlands, while at the same time he so clearly put on show the human condition, warts and all.

In short, good stuff, especially if you have read the preceding books and are therefore better placed to see the ongoing development of the characters.

At the end, my immediate reaction was: when is the next book in the series coming out? Get a move on David Hewson!