Thursday, 28 December 2017

Blood Safari as Christmas ends

As Christmastime is ending and the post Christmas blues is already setting in, this will be my last reading suggestion for Yuletide. 'Tis still the season to be reading, albeit not for very long. As the novel is set mainly between Christmas and the new year, I thought it made sense to suggest Blood Safari by South African crime writer Deon Meyer. In summery South Africa, it is a Yuletide read devoid of the usual seasonal commonplaces. It is the second of his books I suggested to read for Christmas (see here for the other one). Blood Safari introduces Lemmer, a professional bodyguard who is hired to protect Emma Le Roux while she is trying to find her long lost brother. Lemmer is not a perfect man (no character should be), but he's truly good at what he does and has many virtues I love in a crime fiction protagonist. He is quick, sharp, efficient, reliable, he knows how to scan his surroundings and how to defend himself, his friends and loved ones... or people who pay him. In sum, he is a mercenary with principles. Even in extreme danger and when things see, desperate, he keeps on fighting. In any case, he is a great character, with a troubled past, anger issues and a surprising contempt for alcohol (you'll need to read it to discover why). I have read the novel right after Christmas, since then I have been wanting to revisit to kick start the season. Maybe this coming year.

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