Tuesday, December 25, 2007

The Sinner

Bitter Lemon Press, February 2008

Cora Bender, a German mother and housewife, teeters on the edge of madness in the brilliant, psychological thriller, The Sinner by bestselling German author Petra Hammesfahr. Unhappy with her marriage, unable to feel any love towards her son, Cora muddles through life as she attempts to forget a tortured past.

As Cora and family picnic at the beach, Cora becomes enraged over the sexually overt behavior of a young couple sitting next to them. Without warning, Cora attacks the male and kills him; so begins the unraveling of her past; a past which is inextricably linked to the man she has murdered. Although it is clear that Cora has committed the crime, Police Commissioner Rudolf Grovian is determined to discover why, even if it means uncovering that which Cora can not face.

Hammesfahr, considered one of the greatest German crime authors, deftly explores how our past serves to define us and how one can never truly run from what was. Lyrical prose and concise wording creates a novel that hits at one's very soul; each word is rift with meaning and purpose. This is a book created by a master of the genre - one that an American public would be wise to embrace.

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