Monday, September 12, 2011

BOOK: Trackers by Deon Meyer

Trackers by Deon Meyer, 478 pages

RIP 6; Global Reading Challenge; 2nds Author

I was blown away by Deon Meyer's Thirteen Hours last year, and I was not let down with his latest release. Trackers involves several different trackers in South Africa, and is almost three overlapping stories in one giant thriller.

One story is Milla Strachan, recently separated from a terrible husband, discovering herself in a new job, as a writer for the intelligence gathering division of the South African government. A second story is bodyguard Lemmer accompanying the smuggling of two rhinos from Zimbabwe into South Africa. The third story is recently retired cop Mat Joubert working on a missing husband for a private investigative firm. Through it all, the organized crime network in South Africa play havoc with their fingers in everything.

Each story was exciting and thrilling in its own right, but the subtle way they overlapped, providing the reader with a bit of information that the characters don't have was very well done. Watching the intelligence gatherers compile information and make conclusions did not inspire much confidence in me, but they did manage to get the job done, mostly through dumb luck. Although it wasn't meant to be, I found that section quite humourous, knowing what I did from the previous section. I haven't read about Mat Joubert before, but librarything tells me he is the main character in several other books, and my cop buddy from Thirteen Hours, Bennie Griessel, makes a small cameo. Joubert and Lemmer are tough, strong characters, those outlaw type guys who operate mostly within the law, the kind that are fun to read about.

Without wasting a lot of words on description, the plot flies along. Yet Meyer manages to set the South African location as if you were there, and the characters come to life with depth and backstory. Mention must be made as well to the translator from Afrikaans, KL Seegers, for the wonderful job.

Now that I am up to date on some of my other favorite mystery series (Inspector Montalbano, Inspector Erlunder, Inspector Gamauche) it's time to read more Deon Meyer. Bennie and Mat each have a few books they've been in already - Dead at Daybreak, Devil's Peak, Dead Before Dying, and Proteus.

thanks to randomhouse for the review copy