Wednesday, April 25, 2007

"The Grave Tattoo" - Val McDermid

Val McDermid's the author of the "Wire in the Blood" series of serial killer books that I haven't read but I have watched a lot of the BBC movies based on them. They were sort of okay. Pretty much run of the mill in these days of CSI and its tiresome ilk.

"The Grave Tattoo" chronicles the adventures of a low level Wordsworth academic searching for the connection between a two century old tattooed corpse in an English bog, Fletcher Christian of HMS Bounty fame, and William Wordsworth, long winded, now deceased, poet laureate of England.

The reviews made the book sound pretty cool, I swear it. But it wasn't. McDermid threw in so much ancilliary crap (such as a clever mixed race tough girl with a penchant for poetry, conniving gay male friends, untrustworthy ex-boyfriends and jealous brothers) that none of it really helped move the story along and kept it from ever really achieving any sort of depth. In the end it felt like a sort of politically correct Agatha Christie singleton with none of the true cleverness the old dame brought to a mystery.

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