Friday, October 16, 2015

DEVIL OF DELPHI by Jeffrey Siger

Sometimes the best way to solve a crime is not to solve it.

Jeffrey Siger’s Devil of Delphi has an electric ending. I could see it coming, but then again, I couldn’t.

Greece’s Chief Inspector Andreas Kaldis and his crew investigate the foreign mobs trafficking in bomba, counterfeit alcoholic beverages. The counterfeits have perfectly imitated labels. They threaten to destroy Greece’s wine and spirits industry. Some of the counterfeits are poison.

During the investigation, Kaldis gets crosswise with two master killers, Teacher with whom he has dealt before and her hired assassin, the psychopathic murderer Kharon.

Both are untouchable. Kharon lives in Delphi, the Greek mythological center of the world, a place where gods and rulers lived. Even the sacred mountain at Delphi reinforces its spiritual significance.

Kharon's name is that of the Greek mythological character who ferries souls to the underworld. 

Kharon kills the daughter of a prominent (but corrupt) Greek businessman. The businessman’s incompetent son tried to take down Teacher. The businessman attacks Kaldis and Kaldis’ dying boss Spiros.

So plenty happens. But the police can’t do much about it. Everyone is too dangerous or too powerful.

All this leads to the surprising ending.

The Andreas Kaldis books are among the best police procedurals I read. They take me to a place I’ll never be able to go. They describe government corruption, the kinds of fraud that surely helped lead to Greece’s present financial troubles. And they have interesting recurring characters (police, family, and villains).

If you are looking for good police procedurals, I suggest you try Jeffrey Siger’s Andreas Kaldis series.

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