City of Sinners is the third book in Harry Virdee series by A.A. Dhand. Considering I’ve read all three of his books this year, I think I’m getting slightly obsessed with him.
Harry Virdee is in the police force in Bradford while his wife, Saima, is a nurse at Bradford’s A&E department. He is a Sikh but his wife is a Muslim. This is enough to create a story line in itself and their families reaction to their inter-racial marriage does form a background to the main story.
The main story in each of the books relates to a case that Harry is working on and in most of the cases I do feel sorry for his wife who seems to get inadvertently caught up in his cases. Or maybe that’s what happens when you marry a police officer.
As usual, this book starts right into the start of the case that DCI Virdee is working on. There’s no build up, no preparation, the book just starts by describing how the murdered body is hanging from Bradford’s Waterstones bookshop. Apart from the fact that I now want to go and see this Waterstones, it also feels close to home as nearly every city in England has (or had) a Waterstones.
After reeling you into the crime scene, it then goes on to describe the family saga as Virdee’s father is admitted into A&E. Saima is on duty at the time and helps to save his life, not that he knows this is his daughter-in-law.
However, this is almost a separate story line and enough to make it into a book on its own. The brothers have an interesting relationship and as bits of their upbringing is revealed, you can almost relate to some of it. The struggles our parents and grandparents went through to try and fit in and become accepted in to this society is real.
Going back to the crime scene, right from the beginning, this murderer said it was personal to Harry Virdee and so I naturally started thinking back to the other two books I had read wondering if it had anything to do with those cases especially as I had only read them a few months ago. It’s not and just when you think you have it all figured out or everything seems to be coming together, another twist in the book throws it all off.
I don’t think I can write any more about the case without giving the storyline away and I don’t want to do that because YOU HAVE TO READ THIS BOOK!
Like the other two books, this books brings so much together, especially from an Asian readers perspective and it is excellent in so many ways. I read this book on holiday within two days including part of it being plugged into the wall while my kindle charged. And yes, I ignored every single member of my family for the whole day. This book, along with the other two is a must read.
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